Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on Okta Certified Professional

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 These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

Aspiring cloud identity management professionals can use Okta Certified Professional certification to find their footing in the field.Earlier this year in February, we turned the Deep Focus lens on Salary Survey newcomer Okta, a cloud identity management provider that offers three levels of certification. Our first pass was to review the data gathered for Okta Certified Administrator, Okta’s middle-tier certification. This week, we’re checking in at the base of the Okta Certification pyramid.

The introductory Okta Certified Professional credential — No. 18 on this year’s Salary Survey 75 list — helps cloud specialists get grounded in the world of cloud identity management (a topic explored in the April issue of Certification Magazine). This is a great place to start who individuals who are new to the identity and access management (IAM) realm.

Here’s what the salary picture looks like for Okta Certified Professional holders who responded to the Salary Survey:

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $132,640
Median Annual Salary: $130,000
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 2.8 percent
Very Satisfied: 50 percent
Satisfied: 38.9 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 8.3 percent
Not At All Satisfied: [No responses]

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $71,000
Median Annual Salary: $35,000
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: [No responses]
Very Satisfied: 25.8 percent
Satisfied: 41.7 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 24.2 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 8.3 percent

The largest single body of Okta Certified Professional holders to participate in the Salary Survey is made up of U.S. residents (75 percent of respondents), though we did also hear from certified professionals in four other countries: Australia, India, the Netherlands, and Romania.

The usual impressive majority of credential holders to respond to the survey are men (81.2 percent of those surveyed), but we heard from notably more women, nearly 20 percent of all OCP holders, than is the norm. In terms of age, Okta Certified Professional holders are heavily concentrated in early adulthood and early middle age, with 35.4 percent of those surveyed between the ages of 25 and 34, and 37.5 percent of those surveyed between the ages of 35 and 44. We also heard from a smaller contingent (22.9 percent of respondents) between the ages of 45 and 54, but the true outliers are the 2.1 percent between the ages of 19 and 24, and the 2.1 percent between the ages of 55 and 64.

When it comes to formal education, the highest level of education completed by most Okta Certified Professional holders is a bachelor’s degree, claimed by 56.3 percent of respondents. We also heard from equal numbers of individuals who either hold master’s degrees (16.7 percent of those surveyed) or completed some level of technical training after high school (16.7 percent), with the rest either claiming an associate’s degree (8.3 percent) or high school diploma (2 percent).

There’s apparently strong demand from employers for Okta Certified Professional holders: 100 percent of those who participate in the Salary Survey have full-time jobs. “Full-time” work schedules can vary, of course, and while some Okta Certified Professional holders have a standard 40-hour work week (22.9 percent of respondents), many put in between 41 and 50 hours per week (47.9 percent), and some work more than 50 hours (22.9 percent). The presumably happy outliers are the 6.3 percent of respondents for whom “full-time” means somewhere between 31 and 39 hours per week.

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of Okta Certified Professional holders, 35.4 percent of those surveyed, are at the senior specialist level. The rest, in descending order, are either specialists (19.8 percent of respondents), managers (19.4 percent), senior managers (9.8 percent), directors (7.8 percent) or executives (also 7.8 percent).

Cloud identity management being a relatively new field, there are considerably fewer Okta Certified Professionals whose expertise has been seasoned by long application than is the norm: just 11.8 percent are hardened 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 (56.8 percent of respondents), between 3 and 5 years (21.6 percent), between 6 and 8 years (7.8 percent), or between 9 and 10 years (2 percent).

Finally, here’s the view of Okta Certified Professional 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: 70.6 percent
Several times a week: 17.6 percent
Several times a month: 3.9 percent
Occasionally: 5.9 percent
Rarely: 2 percent

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills. 
Strongly agree: 37.2 percent
Agree: 45.1 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 13.7 percent
Disagree: 2 percent
Strongly Disagree: 2 percent

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 39.2 percent
Agree: 43.1 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 15.7 percent
Disagree: [No responses]
Strongly Disagree: 2 percent

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 39.2 percent
Agree: 45.1 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 9.8 percent
Disagree: 3.9 percent
Strongly Disagree: 2 percent

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CertMag Staff

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Certification Magazine was launched in 1999 and remained in print until mid-2008. Publication was restarted on a quarterly basis in February 2014. Subscribe to CertMag here.

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