Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on MCSE: Core Infrastructure

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Salary Survey Extra is a series of dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our annual Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

You can no longer earn the MCSE: Core Infrastructure certification from Microsoft, but it' still hanging around.The tangled web of Microsoft certifications got a whole lot simpler earlier this year on Jan. 31, when all remaining MCSA, MCSD, and MCSE certifications were relegated to the dustbin of history. That includes this week’s featured credential, Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE): Core Infrastructure (No. 41 on our most recent Salary Survey 75 list).

There’s no immediate reason for MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders to clean up their résumés: All Microsoft credentials that were formally retired at the end of January will remain active until Jan. 31, 2023. After that point in time, they will no longer be considered “active” by Microsoft and you’ll probably start getting questioning looks from hiring managers who are combing through that section of your CV.

Here’s what the salary picture looks like for MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders who responded to the Salary Survey:

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $124,430
Median Annual Salary: $131,670
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 10 percent
Very Satisfied: 26 percent
Satisfied: 44 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 18 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 2 percent

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $76,550
Median Annual Salary: $73,750
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 5.7 percent
Very Satisfied: 17.1 percent
Satisfied: 40 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 28.6 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 8.6 percent

The largest single body of MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders to participate in the survey is made up of U.S. residents (58.8 percent), but we also heard from credential holders in 24 other countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Georgia, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Netherlands, Pakistan, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom.

All but a handful of the MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders who responded to the survey are men — just 7.6 percent of those surveyed are women. In terms of age, those same certified professionals are relatively old and getting older: More than 85 percent of those surveyed are either between the ages of 35 and 44 (33 percent), between the ages of 45 and 54 (also 33 percent), or between the ages of 55 and 64 (20 percent). The outliers are the 8.2 percent of those surveyed who are between the ages of 25 and 34, the 4.7 percent who are between the ages of 65 and 74, and the 1.1 percent who are 75 or older.

Roughly 85 percent of MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders who responded to the survey have an educational background that includes time spent at a college or university. The highest level of education completed by most MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders is either a bachelor’s degree (43.5 percent of those surveyed), master’s degree (32.9 percent), associate’s degree (4.7 percent), professional degree (2.4 percent), or doctorate (also 2.4 percent). Most of the remaining credential holders exited the realm of formal education either after completing some level of post-high school technical training (7.1 percent of respondents) or after getting a high school diploma (5.9 percent), along with a tiny group (1.1  percent) who are currently furthering their educational pursuits.

A solid 91.5 percent of MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders who responded to the survey are employed full-time, with  4.3 percent holding part-time jobs, 1.1 percent who are students, and the remaining 3.2 percent currently out of work. For most survey respondents, full-time employment means either putting in between 41 and 50 hours per week (50.6 percent of those surveyed), or sticking to a standard 40-hour work week (31.8 percent). The outliers are the 11.8 percent of those surveyed who work more than 50 hours per week, and the 5.8 percent who are on the clock for between 31 and 39 hours per week.

With COVID-19 continuing to spread, a striking majority of survey respondents have shifted away from the traditional office workplace, doing their jobs from home either between 21 and 30 hours per week (3,5 percent of those surveyed), between 31 and 39 hours per week (7.1 percent), 40 hours per week (28.2 percent), or more than 40 hours per week (40 percent). That leave fewer than one-fourth of MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders who are filling half of more of their work schedule at the office, putting in either 10 or fewer hours per week from home (15.3 percent) or between 10 and 20 hours per week from home (5.9 percent).

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders we heard from are employed at the senior specialist level (43.8 percent of those surveyed). The rest, in descending order, are either managers (16.3 percent of respondents), directors (13.3 percent), senior managers (9.5 percent), executives (7.6 percent), specialists (5.7 percent), or rank-and-file employees (3.8 percent).

An eye-opening 71.4 percent of MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders who responded to the survey are IT veterans, having worked in a role that directly utilizes one or more of their certified skills for more than a decade. The rest have been plying their certified skills for either between zero years (1 to 11 months) and 2 years (1.9 percent of respondents), between 3 and 5 years (9.5 percent), between 6 and 8 years (2.9 percent), or between 9 and 10 years  (14.3 percent).

Finally, here’s the view of MCSE: Core Infrastructure holders on key questions from the survey about how certification impacts job performance:

At my current job I use skills learned or enhanced through certification: 
Several times a day: 53.3 percent
Several times a week: 30.4 percent
Several times a month: 8.6 percent
Occasionally: 6.7 percent
Rarely: 1 percent

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills. 
Strongly agree: 44.8 percent
Agree: 37.1 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 13.3 percent
Disagree: 2.9 percent
Strongly Disagree: 1.9 percent

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 31.4 percent
Agree: 43.8 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 20 percent
Disagree: 2.9 percent
Strongly Disagree: 1.9 percent

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 30.5 percent
Agree: 41.9 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 20 percent
Disagree: 5.7 percent
Strongly Disagree: 1.9 percent

PAST MCSE: CORE INFRASTRUCTURE DEEP FOCUS FEATURES

2020

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