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Today I launched a Certification Checklist on My Developerworks that you can use to track your progress on following the steps required to earn a certification: Getting Started Guide to DB2 Certification.
You can use most of the steps in this checklist to track your progress
for any IBM software certification, but many of the steps are specific
to DB2. I would like to expand the list in the future, but started
with the basics.
Please note that you'll need to be logged into My Developerworks in order to access and use the template.
What is a checklist template?
A Checklist template allows you to create a copy of the steps that must
be take to achieve a specific goal (in this case to earn a
certification). By creating a copy of the checklist, you are able to
check off the tasks as you complete them (or if they are not applicable
to you) so you can keep track of your progress. You can set specific
deadlines for completing each step and use My Developerworks to keep
you on top of the schedule.
This is the first checklist that I've created, so I'm sure there are
areas for improvement. If you have suggestions for how I can improve
this checklist, I'll be happy to hear from you.
I don't want to get fired... and I'm sure most of you don't either! So, reading the article I found that one of the best ways to KEEP your job is by continually growing your skills! I can give plenty advice as to how you can grow your skills... and not all of them require a great deal of time or money!
Certification I've blogged about how to get certified many times. The only thing I want to add at this point is that you can use the path to get certified as a roadmap for building skills. You will learn a lot but will also have validation that your skills are up to par by passing one or more certification exams. For further information on how to start, see my blog entry "Certification 101". To make it even more cost effective for you to get certified, we have Certification Days where exams are offered half price, and a Try it Again offer that allows you to retry your exam if you failed to pass. In my opinion, getting a certification is the FASTEST and most COST-EFFECTIVE way to build skills... bar none!
Classes Travel is expensive, so take a look at the new way to take an IBM class where you choose the time, place, and best of all, no travel involved! Self-paced Virtual Classes are one option, ILO classes are another. Right now, you can take a free SPVC to see how it works.
Books Another very cost-effective way to build skills. You can buy a printed book, read a book online, borrow from a library... whatever works for you. There is a wide selection of books available... that cover just about every topic imaginable. For the entire list of books that we have available for Information Management topics, see either DB2 in Books or IM Bookstore. The online engines where you can read books are Books 24x7 or Safari Books Online. You can read more about these options in my blog entry.
Conferences OK... a conference is very expensive... but is it really? If you factor in all that you get when you attend a conference, you may find that it is very cost-effective. The IOD conference has free certification exams, 400 technical sessions, demos... not to mention networking! See Kate's blog for a series of entries about the IOD conference. Another option is to attend a virtual conference. I don't know of any that are scheduled at this moment...but when I learn about one, I'll blog about it. Sure it is quite different than attending a conference in person in a city away from your home / office, but it still provides some training, demos, and networking, but is usually free to attend.
So, please! Don't get fired because you've let your skills stagnate! Keep up to date with the many options that are available to you!
Earning IBM Professional Certification is a smart career move. But many of us are nervous when taking the certification exam. Our “Take it Again” promo can help build your confidence. If you don’t pass an exam on your first attempt, you can retake it for no additional cost.
Take It Again is a voucher program, offered worldwide, by IBM Professional Certification. With Take It Again you may purchase specially priced vouchers so that in the event you do not pass an exam on your
first attempt, you may quickly and easily retake the same exam for no additional costs.
Using the voucher number, schedule and pay for your initial exam. (Note: To be eligible for the free retake, you must provide the TIA voucher number
when scheduling this original testing appointment.)
Take the exam.
If you do not pass the exam you may register to take the same exam again using the
same voucher. (Note: After taking the original exam, please wait a minimum of
one day before attempting to register for the retake. This will allow time for the
original test results to be entered into the system.)
There is no additional charge for retaking the exam.
Over the past month, I've written several entries to help you get certified. This posting lists all of those entries and makes it easy for you to navigate through some of the material. I'll repost or update this entry as I go. I hope you find this useful.
Certification Day that took place in Toronto early in July was very successful, so more dates and venues have been added. I hope there is a location near you, but if there isn't yet, maybe it will be added as more dates and venues are under consideration.
What do you get? 50% discount on the normal exam fee on any IBM software certification exam. See ibm.com/certify for a list of the software exams that are available. Given my bias... see some of my previous blog entries regarding exams and prep materials available for DB2.
How do you register? Send an email to Christiana Soares (email@example.com).
How do you pay? Credit card is the only option.
How much do you save? 50% off the exam fee, which in many cases means a savings of $100 USD.
Which locations and dates?
August 18 - Austin Texas August 31 - Shanghai, China September 3 - Mainz, Germany September 16 - Denver, Colorado September 23 - Chemnitz, Germany September 25 - Ehningen, Germany October 13 - Liverpool, United Kingdom October 15 - Frankfurt, Germany November 17 - Sydney, Australia
I work in the Toronto Lab where we have at least 2500 employees. We're lucky enough to have a library where local employees may borrow books. This morning I shared the elevator with a couple of people carrying one of the books by Roger Sanders. The book is affectionately known as the "red book" and the one that I saw clearly came from the library and was so well-used it was amazing! It makes me happy to see that there are so many people here at the lab who prepare and take the certification exams.
Speaking of Roger Sanders, author of 4 of our DB2 Study Guides, I was reminded by Billy Sundarrajan that IDUG has posted a video of Roger teaching one of his certification prep classes:
Roger will once again be teaching his preparation course at the IOD Conference taking place in Las Vegas the week of Oct 25. There is no better way to cram for the exam! Here are the details:
DB2 9 for Linux & Windows DBA Certification Crammer (Exam 731) This training is designed to introduce the student to the concepts a test candidate must know in order to take and pass the DB2 9 DBA for Linux, UNIX, and Window certification exam (Exam 731). The material for this course is aligned with the 731 exam objectives.
DB2 9 for Linux & Windows DBA Certification Crammer (Exam 731) This training is designed to introduce the student to the concepts a test candidate must know in order to take and pass the DB2 9 DBA for Linux, UNIX, and Window certification exam (Exam 731). The material for this course is aligned with the 731 exam objectives.
All five of these certification prep guides were written by members of the exam
development team. That is, they created the questions for the certification exam
that you are about to take! Also, each chapter of the book corresponds directly
to a section on the exam. So, if you take the assessment exam and find out that
you are week on a single topic, you simply need to read the chapter that
corresponds to the topic where you need improvement. Lastly, the authors created
a set of sample questions for the book that provides you with the correct answer
to the question as well as an explanation as to why the correct answer is
correct and the incorrect ones are not.
All six of these books... and many more, can be read and searched electronically. Safari Online and Books 24x7 are two popular electronic book engines where these books are available. Why would you want to read a book electronically? You might not want to read an entire book electronically, but if you are browsing books to find out which one you should buy in print, searching and reading parts of the book electronically makes sense and may help you make the best choice on your purchase.
Also, if you are mostly prepared for the exam, but just want to do a bit of review before taking the exam, you might consider doing the review electronically. At the very least, I'd suggest reading the summary for each chapter, answering the sample questions that are found in the book, and reading the description for the answers. This can be done quite easily electronically.
Safari Books Online is a
great electronic book engine and right now, you can receive a free 15-day
trial. With Safari Books Online, you can search for a particular keyword, read
the entire book cover to cover, or simply ensure that this is the book you need
before you buy the printed version. Hurry! This offer has been held over until the end of 2009.
Books 24x7 is another great electronic book engine. IBMers world-wide can access books via this engine, free of charge. You can reach the site through many internal home pages. Many other companies and schools also have subscriptions to Books 24x7. Check with your company to see if you have a free subscription.
Last week my 4 blog entries centered around why and how to get certified in DB2. So, once you've earned your certification, what's next? The latest Certification Magazine answers this very question. I encourage you to read the article: I'm Certified, Now What? by Lynn Lawton.
Share the News
The fact that you passed a certification is NOT broadcast to the world. This is something that you should do yourself. Tell your management, update your profiles on facebook, linkedin, plaxo, etc, add details to your email signature line, add details to your business cards. In short, tell everyone in the biz that you have put the initiative in to study, learn, and pass a certification exam and you should be very proud of your accomplishments.
Put it to Use
You must have learned something during your learning journey... and hopefully what you learned will help you become more efficient or effective at your job. Or perhaps you learned about a new feature or way of doing your job that will have far reaching effects. Practice what you learned. In addition, did the certification that you earned simply a stepping stone to more advanced topics? Check through the roadmaps to see if there are deeper achievements waiting for you. For example, if you've earned a DBA Certification, consider trying for the Advanced DBA Certification. Build on what you have just learned.
Expand your Network
With your added knowledge, are you now qualified to answer questions on forums or in newsgroups? Are you now able to write articles? Join professional groups? I would suggest that you look at PlanetDB2.com, ChannelDB2.com, groups on LinkedIN, Facebook fan pages, etc. Wherever product experts gather, you should see if you are able to join and contribute.
Display the Accomplishment
Print your certificate... give one copy to your boss and frame another to display in your office. Be proud of your accomplishment and brag about it. If you are in a consulting role, perhaps this certification will open up new opportunities for you and the certificate can be presented to your clients.
Consider a Job Search or Raise Request
It won't hurt to ask.... is it time for a raise or a job change? A new certification might be the stepping stone to something better.
Teaching is a great way to strengthen your knowledge about any topic. Now that you are certified, can you encourage and help others achieve the same goal? Can the need for certification become a department or company wide goal and future achievement? Wouldn't you prefer to work with people who at least know what you do? Think of the synergy that can come from working with equally educated team members.
Achieving a certification is a great accomplishment, but in no way does it mean that you know everything that there is to know. You must put what you learned into practice, recommend better ways of doing things, and continue to learn. One mistake that I saw people making a few years ago is that they didn't think that they needed to re certify when a new product level was released. This is an incorrect assumption. If the vendor thought that it was worth updating an exam (usually at significant cost) then it is worth you retaking the exam to be sure that you are aware of the latest features of the latest products.
Do you have any other suggestions for what people should do once they've received their certification? If so, let me know!
By popular demand, the Assess and Save special offer returned July 1. Purchase and pass any Information Management Online Assessment Exam through Prometric Testing July 1 - Sept. 30 and receive a 50% off voucher towards purchase of the corresponding exam. That's $100 back in your pocket. Candidates from the first phase of this offer experienced significantly improved pass rates on the actual exam.
The successful candidate for
the IBM Certified Database Associate - Informix Dynamic Server 11.50
Fundamentals has important knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary
to provide entry level administration of IDS 11.50, including basic SQL
(Structured Query Language), how IDS 11.50 is installed, how to create
databases and database objects, security, transaction isolation, backup
and recovery procedures, and describe replication technologies and
This certification targets:
Entry level technical professionals - programming, system design, architect
University students - application of information technology
exam has a time limit of 90 minutes, except the upgrade exam which has
a time limit of 60 minutes. The number of questions and the cutscore
for each exam varies. For example, exam 730 has 64 questions and you
must score 59 percent or higher to pass it. How do I prepare to pass an exam? Here is the recommended path I suggest you take to prepare for a DB2 exam: 1)
Choose the exam you want to take based on your job role. The DBA and
AppDev certifications first require that you are certified as a
Database Associate. To help you decide where to start, see the certification roadmaps. 2)
Read through the exam objectives. Every question on the exam relates
directly to one or more of the exam objectives. For a breakdown of the
exam objectives and the recommended study materials, see ibm.com/software/data/education/certprep.html Here are the exams that cover the DB2 9 product:
* Exam 737 - DB2 9 System Administrator for z/OS 3)
If you are experienced with DB2 and feel that you are prepared to pass
the exam based on what you saw in the exam objectives, take an assessment exam.
You'll get a report after taking the assessment exam that can help you
pinpoint your weaknesses. Assessment exams cost $10 per take, so if you
really think you are ready, come and take the exam to see. 4) If you are NOT experienced with DB2, download a free version of DB2 Express-C and give it a try! 5)
Decide on how you want to increase your skills:
a) Consider buying one
of the Certification Study Guides to refresh and deepen your skills: ibm.com/software/data/education/bookstore. For exam prep, the best books are these: DB2 9 Fundamentals Certification Study Guide by Roger Sanders DB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 731 by Roger Sanders DB2 9 Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 732 by Susan Lawson and Daniel Luksetich DB2 9 Database Administration Upgrade Certification Study Guide for Exam 736 by Roger Sanders DB2 9 Advanced Database Administration Certification Study Guide for Exam 734 by Roger Sanders and Dwaine Snow. All
five of these certification prep guides were written by members of the
exam development team. That is, they created the questions for the
certification exam that you are about to take! Also, each chapter of
the book corresponds directly to a section on the exam. So, if you take
the assessment exam and find out that you are week on a single topic,
you simply need to read the chapter that corresponds to the topic where
you need improvement. Lastly, the authors created a set of sample
questions for the book that provides you with the correct answer to the
question as well as an explanation as to why the correct answer is
correct and the incorrect ones are not. For reference and guidance beyond the exam, I suggest the following: DB2 9 for Linux, UNIX, and Windows: DBA Guide, Reference, and Exam Prep (6th Edition) by George Baklarz and Paul Zikopoulos b)
For self-study, also check out the free tutorials that IBM provides for
most of the exams. The tutorials are broken into hour long segments of
information based on the exam objectives. If you have a great deal of
experience, this may be all you need to prepare for the exam. To see
the full set of exam prep tutorials that are available, see ibm.com/software/data/education/selfstudy.html. c)
Take an education class from IBM or one of its partners. These classes
typically have a fee, even for employees, so check with management to
see if you can take one of these classes. Classroom education is an
excellent way to learn, but may be difficult to justify due to costs.
Don't forget to look into ILO training as this type of training gives
you all the benefits of classroom education, but eliminates the travel
costs. The best place to start to determine the classroom education
that best fits your needs is with the training roadmaps: ibm.com/software/data/education/roadmaps.html. 6) If this is your first time taking a certification exam, review the steps on this site: ibm.com/certify/process/t_proc.shtml. Can I gain experience by reading DB2 Forums and Blogs?
There are several DBAs who firmly believe helping out on the various
forums have helped us gain a deeper understanding of subjects that were
on the exams. So, contribute to those forums. You're not only helping
other people, you're helping yourself as well! Most likely you'll find
members of the DB2 development team actively taking part in the forums
as well. Here are the sites that I recommend, at the least: Planet DB2 - a blog aggregator that combines DB2 blogs from around the world. IBM developerWorks - DB2 Portal IDUG – International DB2 User’s Group My blog: https://www.ibm.com/developerworks/mydeveloperworks/blogs/SusanVisser/ Kate's blog: ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/katedawson
I hope you find this information useful! Good luck on your journey towards certification!
Today I want to tell
you about how to prepare to take and pass an exam.
How to Prepare
to Pass a DB2 Certification Exam
the exam objectives.The website ibm.com/certify lists the
objectives for every IBM certification exam.Read these carefully as each question on the exam links directly back to
one or more of these objectives!(That’s
a huge hint!)
In the past 10 years, I’ve met many people who have taken and passed one or more DB2 certification exam. I like to chat with people, so I usually ask them to tell me if they see benefits to passing an exam. I also meet with many people who are reluctant to take an exam and must convince them of the benefits. I’ll put a few of my findings in this post, but I hope that I hear from people if they agree or disagree!
People who are reluctant to take a certification exam are usually reluctant due to fear. Fear of failure, fear of taking a test, fear of having others learn their scores, or fear of being judged or ranked. I totally understand these fears! The first thing I want to stress about certification exams is YOUR SCORE IS CONFIDENTIAL TO YOU. Sure the score is captured by a computer system and is sent to IBM to be stored in a DB2 database, but we are governed by very strict privacy laws that prevent any of this information to be given to anyone except for the candidate who is taking the exam.
This should give you a sense of comfort that you can take the exam without anyone knowing. So if you fail, feel free to try again! Use the score report to help you strengthen your knowledge in the areas where you didn’t do so well. If you do pass the exam, you must tell your managers, customers, clients, etc. Only you can brag about your certification!
Another thing that you should keep in mind is that each exam has a cutscore assigned to it. You can think of a cutscore as the mark you must reach to pass the exam. To come up with a cutscore, we have a team of experts take the exam and then rank each question in terms of difficulty, importance to the job role, and frequency that the task is performed. As an example, the cutscore for Exam 731 is 59%. Since there are 64 questions on the exam, you must answer 38 questions correctly to pass the exam. As a result of passing the exam, you will be sent a certificate stating that you are now IBM Certified. Your certificate will look the same whether you score 59% or 100%!
I also suggest that you don’t play the “score” game. I’ve heard conversations where people are bragging about their score or candidates who are pressuring themselves to score better than one of their co-workers. I can tell you that most of the people bragging about their score are embellishing slightly! It’s best to not discuss your score in the first place.
One of the biggest benefits of passing a certification exam is that it proves that you are very proactive at keeping your skills up to date. Anyone can say that they know about the latest features of a product, but by passing a certification exam, you have validation that you do indeed understand the latest features. Although DB2 certifications are very popular and still growing in numbers, the number of people who actually [i]have[/i] a certification is a fraction of the number of people who [i]could[/i] have a certification. If you are certified, consider yourself as part of a relatively small group!
A second benefit is that studying for a certification will expose you to areas of the product that you wouldn’t normally care about. Very few people have hands-on knowledge of EVERY feature in a product, so when studying for, and taking the exam, you will be exposed to more features than you normally use. Perhaps you’ll discover a feature that will really help your application or in the usage of the product.
One of the benefits that I mention to the developer in the Toronto Lab who create the DB2 product is that it will allow them to see the product as our customers use it. Not many of us in the Toronto Lab work as DBAs, so by passing the DBA exam, it exposes us to the tasks that DBAs must perform in their daily jobs. It seems to me that this will help IBM create better products! The same is true for those who are writing about the product, supporting it, testing it, or even selling it.
A team of us are trying to scientifically determine the actual benefits of being certified, but in the mean time, my team ran an informal survey asking what the benefits were. Here are some of the responses:
Certification adds credibility when addressing customers
Certification is a partner requirement
Certification gives my company a business advantage
Certification helps me pinpoint problems faster
Certification gives me confidence and respect
Certification gives me credibility with younger workers and my peers
Certification gives me leverage and job security
Certification led to my membership in a competency network
Certification gives me professional recognition
Certification helps me set up a training plan to keep my skills current
Certification is valued by management
Certification earned me better performance ratings
Certification helped me earn a promotion
Certification earned me management recognition
Certification gave me additional skills
Certification led to a raise
What do you think? Have you experienced any of these benefits? Are there other benefits that you experienced?
One of the publishers that I work with quite often is MC Press. You may know of MC Press through the large number of books that they have published on IBM products and technologies. For instance, you'll find books within the following categories:
We're working on two more certification guides that will be part of this series.... so stay tuned to find out more details.
When you go to the book links above... you'll notice that there is a banner on the site reminding you of our Assess & Save Promotion. Remember that this promotion is only active till the end of the month, so don't miss out.
Two more things you should know.... One... you can save 20% on all books that you purchase before April 19, 2009 through the MC Press Online bookstore.
Two... if you are a registered member of MC Press Online, you'll have access to a rich collection of resources such as white papers, articles, and podcasts. MC Press Online likes to reward its members with cool prizes. Currently you have a chance to win a pair of Zetronix 80” Video Glasses. Interested? Check out the free resources and enter for your chance to win!
I mentioned yesterday that the Assess & Save offer will be active only for the next month. Today I want to tell you about the success of this promotion. Apparently we've been giving out a lot of vouchers for people to take their exam of choice for 50% off the regular price. But even better than that... those who are taking the certification test with the voucher are PASSING!
This tells me that the people who are taking part in this promotion are very serious about getting certified. It also tells me that those who pass the assessment test are suitably prepared to pass the real exam. Although the assessment test questions are different that the questions on the real exam, they are close representations of the questions that you can expect to see on the exam.
So do you want to give it a try? Thanks to Kate, here's how you can take part:
Determine which IBM Professional Certification will best grow your skills and demonstrate your expertise. Check out the Certification program overview, and the Certification roadmaps to learn more about the program and choose an exam.
Study, study, study to get prepared! Visit the exam preparation page to find study resources, including our extensive collection of Certification Prep Guides:
Take a self-assessment test. IBM offers online self assessment exams for each Information Management Professional Certification exam. These practice tests enable you to test your readiness for an exam for a minimal fee, helping you to be successful when you take the actual exam. With the Assess and Save Offer, candidates who purchase and pass any Information Management Online Assessment Exam through Prometric Testing from now until April 30, 2009 will receive a 50% off voucher good toward the purchase of the corresponding exam at the IBM Authorized Testing Provider, Prometric. That's $100 right back in your pocket!
Register to take the actual exam at a Prometric Testing Centre (using the voucher number provided) and Save!
Can you believe that it is already late in March! I've just returned from vacationing with my son for his March break from school... and am refreshed from the vacation... and pumped because SPRING is here!
There are several deadlines approaching quickly that you must take action on to avoid missing important opportunities.
DB2 Chat with the Labs session featuring a panel of DB2 experts who will discuss cloud computing. Listen live on March 25, 2009 10:00 am PDT/1:30 pm EDT.
Cloud Computing and Virtualization have been named the top 2 strategic technology trends for 2009 by various analysts. With the current climate of tight IT budgets and restraints on capital expenditure, Clouds can come to the rescue with pay-as-you-use models for compute, storage and software resources, and offer flexibility to scale-on-demand. You can now lower the costs of your database solutions by taking advantage of Cloud computing with DB2.
A replay of this and prior DB2 Chat with the Labs are available for approximately one year.
Safari Books Online is holding an exclusive webcast with Thomas Erl during which he will discuss some of the most important SOA design patterns in use today. Register today for the event that takes place Thursday, March 26 10:30 am PDT/1:30 pm EDT.
Don’t miss this opportunity to hear Thomas Erl, author of the newly published SOA Design Patterns, a catalog of 85 design patterns for service-oriented architecture and service-orientation. In development for over three years, the catalog has been subjected to comprehensive reviews by hundreds of industry professionals and is in use by many of the world’s leading technology companies.
Erl will reference design principles and technologies covered by his previous two titles, SOA Principles of Service Design and Web Service Contract Design & Versioning for SOA and will further highlight some of the recent contributions to the SOAPatterns.org community site.
The IDUG 2009 North America conference features 120 hours of peer-reviewed technical presentations, written and delivered by the most sought-after DB2 experts in the world: DB2 Gold Consultants, vendor experts, IBM Distinguished Engineers, IBM Fellows, IBM Vice Presidents, and a keynote by General Manager Ambuj Goyal.
During IDUG 2009 NA, IBM is waiving their $200 certification test fee for conference attendees. There is no limit on the number of free certification tests attendees can take (or re-take, if they do not pass on their initial attempt). IBM will offer 40 different certification tests during the conference, covering DB2, Cognos, InfoSphere, content management, and U2. During a down economy, re-certification can be an effective way for database professionals to lock in their skills and value.
The Assess and Save Offer expires on April 30, 2009. With this offer, candidates who purchase, take and PASS an Information Management Online Assessment Exam during the offering period, will automatically receive a 50% off certification voucher good for the corresponding exam. That's $100 USD right back in your pocket!
IBM offers these online assessment exams for each Information Management Professional Certification. These "practice tests" enable you to test your readiness for a minimal fee, helping you to be successful on exam day.
The IBM IOD EMEA Conference is the premier Information Management conference in Europe, Middle East & Africa (EMEA). It is the annual forum for leading organizations across the region - including our key Customers and Business Partners, Press, Analysts and employees to come together to explore the latest in Information On Demand and to share their experiences and expertise with others in this ever-growing community.
If you only attend one Conference this year, here are just some of the reasons why the IBM Information On Demand EMEA Conference 2009 is the one to attend!
If you were lucky enough to take a break... welcome back! I hope spring is inspiring you to change like it is for me.
If you haven't yet upgraded your skills to DB2 V9, here is some incentive for you:
DB2 V8.2 goes out of service very soon! Meaning that if your company hasn't yet upgraded to V9, they are likely planning a move soon. Make sure your skills match the product you are using or about to use.
It is easier than you think to learn DB2 9. There are so many training resources available to suit just about anyone's needs, including travel-free learning, games to make it fun to learn, and books:
I just came across this whitepaper The Value of Training and I think this should become required reading for anyone making financial decisions for a company. Unfortunately it is too common and too easy to cut skills development and training budgets in the hopes of improving gross margins.
But, as this whitepaper points out quite effectively, this short-sightedness will cause higher attrition, higher support costs, and the risk of falling behind in technological advances.
But if money's tight, what can you do?
The IBM Education Pack helps you save money on a variety of training options, and until March 3, the discounts are higher than normal.
IBM developerWorks, PlanetDB2.com, and ChannelDB2.com are filled with training ideas that are free or less expensive. These include articles, tutorials, videos, podcasts, webcasts, free e-books, virtual conferences, and so on.
Books continue to be a very low cost way to build skills. Check online bookstores to find the best price for printed books, but also consider e-books. IBM has a company-wide subscription to the online book engine Books 24x7. What a great way to ensure that all employees have access to a wide variety of the latest published books.
ILO classes can cut down on training costs by allowing employees to call into a classroom setting rather than having them travel to a class. ILO classes may be less expensive, but they still provide the high quality content and instructors that you expect from an IBM training class.
Certification is another thing that should never be ignored. Going through the certification process, an employee will learn many new things and they will have proof at the end that they are skilled in that area. Also since certifications are job-role based, you can ensure that you or your employee are targeting the skills that are needed for your job. There are many training options for gaining the skills to get certified including classes, books, and tutorials. Best of all is that there is a "Assess and Save" promotion going on right now that allows you to save 50% of the exam fee.
Bottom line... don't sacrifice training budgets in these tough times. Keeping your employees skilled will help you weather the storms.
* Validated knowledge and skills. * Peer recognition. * Increased value to employers. * Increased marketability.
The DB2 Certification Program offers all of these values... and now is a perfect time to get certified or upgrade to the latest level of certification. Right now the Assess and Save Promotion is active... and best of all... is available to EVERYONE, World-Wide!
How does it work?
Take an assessment exam for a fee of $10.
If you pass you'll get a voucher for half off the regular exam fee.
Study some more... especially the sections where you scored poorly.
Take your certification exam.
Repeat for every exam that you wish to pass so that you can fill your credentials with these valuable certifications.
In my opinion, the best way to study is with one of the excellent study guides what we've published through MC Press. Why these books? Well, besides being well-written, the authors were part of the exam development team, so they actually know what you need to know to pass the exam, and they have FREE sample questions (that are different than the assessment exam questions) along with answers and explanations.