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New IT certifications endorsed by 30 HK corporations

Carol Ko | July 25, 2008
Home-grown IT professional certification scheme caters increasing demand for senior IT titles in Hong Kong and China.
HONG KONG, 24 JULY 2008 Senior IT experts in Hong Kong will soon to have three more professional certificates recognising expertise in project management, business analysis and information security.

The new professional certification programme was introduced last week by the non-profit Hong Kong Institute for IT Professional Certification (HKITPC) and was supported by the Hong Kong Computer Society (HKCS) and the IT and business community.

The three new Certified Professional of IT (CPIT) accredited programmes are designed to expand the career development horizon for IT professionals and to help organisations ensure the success of critical IT projects, by optimising costs and enhancing productivity.

It [CPIT] has so far been endorsed by more than 30 corporations, including Cathay Pacific, CLP Power and The Hong Kong Jockey Club, and has certified more than 50 IT professionals; seasoned IT experts with many years of relevant working experience and with senior titles such as Director, Senior Manager, IT Architect etc, said Stephen Lau, chairman of the Board of Governance of the HKITPC.

New certificated titles

The new professional certificated titles that will be available in early 2009, are Associate Project Manager CPIT (APM), Business Analyst CPIT (BA), and Information Security Officer CPIT (InfoSec).

Together, they join the three original pioneering certifications rolled out by HKITPC last year: Project Director CPIT (PD), Systems Architect CPIT (SA), and Quality Assurance Manager - CPIT (QAM).

Through this certification scheme hosted by a genuinely independent and non-profit organisation, professionals can be recognised of their professional competencies that best reflect their knowledge, skills and experience, said Sunny Lee, president of the Hong Kong Computer Society.

IT certification also paves the ways for people to work across the Mainland-Hong Kong border and in the international arena as well as facilitating life-long professional learning and offers inspiration to their personal career development.

K.C. Fung, Director of Technology Solutions Hong Kong at EMC, was the first among the 50 certified IT professionals to acquire the Systems Architect CPIT (SA) title. This is a very serious certification scheme, said Fung. It required me to write an essay to describe my work experience and to sit before an interview panel.

Increased confidence

He said the new IT professional title gave him increased confidence, as it recognizes his attainment in IT at a certain level.

In the long run, IT certification helps the employers of IT professionals have a solid business and recruitment reference, said Sunny Lee. Ultimately all of these will help Hong Kong's IT industry enhance its competitiveness and that of the entire Hong Kong economy.

The Hong Kong Computer Society has granted HKITPC seed funding of one million Hong Kong dollars for the development of the new professional certification programme, in addition to a sponsorship granted by the Office of Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO) two years ago.

According to Lee, the grant from OGCIO only covered the expenses on research and development of the certification programme, but was not responsible for operations. One million is not enough, said Lee. Nothing starts easily. We hope that this (seed funding) can sustain the programme, without it being interrupted by budget concerns and calls for more financial support from the ICT industry.

Charles Mok, Chairman of Internet Society Hong Kong, said: I think the professional certification process ought to be expedited because right now we are only doing certification under trial programs, one job title after another. This is rather slow and we ought to move beyond to start having a full roadmap for the future, including legislation. Right now the industry and our professionals, are not getting the respect needed to keep this sector sustainable and to attract bright new talent to join us.