IDC Forecasts Worldwide IT Certification Revenues Will Exceed $4 Billion in 2003

FRAMINGHAM, MA – MARCH 27, 2000 – The shortage of skilled IT employees is fueling growth in the IT certification market. According to a recently published report from IDC, worldwide revenues in this market are on track to exceed $4 billion by 2003. Currently, the market stands at almost $2.5 billion.

"The IT skills shortage is forcing companies to offer attractive packages to fill IT positions, and these offers are capturing the attention of people with little or no experience in IT professions," said Anne-Sophie Dankens, a research analyst with IDC's IT Education and Training Services program. "These candidates need to be trained or certified before they can land an IT job."

The skills shortage isn't the only factor driving growth in the IT certification market. According to IDC, the proliferation of emerging technologies, the increased need for recertification, the appearance of vendor-neutral programs, the competitive advantage, and other tangible benefits certification brings are also contributing to the market's growth.

IDC expects the test delivery side of the certification market to grow faster than the certification training portion, and the Internet will play a key part in this growth. "The business of IT certification test delivery is mostly applying the Internet as a tool to facilitate its administration and management," Dankens said. "eCertification" remains limited to the IT assessment business and has not yet widely spread to the world of high-stake IT certification exams. However, IDC believes obstacles to "ecertification" will become less formidable as testing providers invest heavily in research to develop sophisticated test drivers and robust test delivery tools for the Internet.

IT certification for networking technologies is in high demand. IDC estimates certification related to networking currently accounts for 40-45% of certified professionals. Certifications for Internet/Web technologies and general IT skills are also in high demand.

IDC's new report titled The IT Certification Training and Testing Market, 1998-2003 (IDC #B21429) analyzes the IT certification market's evolution and examines how the market has changed since 1997. Revenues are forecast through 2003, and historical data is provided back to 1997. The report discusses the testing delivery business, identifies key IT certification areas, and examines new opportunities. To order a copy of the report, contact Cheryl Toffel at 1-800-343-4952, ext. 4389 or at

About IDC

IDC delivers dependable, relevant, and high-impact data and insight on information technology to help organizations make sound business and technology decisions. IDC forecasts worldwide IT markets and technology trends and analyzes IT products and vendors, using a combination of rigorous primary research and in-depth competitive analysis. IDC is committed to providing global research with local content through more than 500 analysts in 43 countries worldwide. IDC's customers comprise the world's leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, and the financial community. Additional information can be found at

IDC is a division of International Data Group, the world's leading IT media, research, and exposition company.

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