Free certifications to add to your resume.

While it might not be feasible for you to start a new degree program or expensive certification program, there are plenty of free and affordable certifications that help you add to your credentials.

Certifications are a quick way to gain skills that will boost your resume and raise your value as a job candidate. While not all certification programs are free, there are several reputable certifications that won’t take up too much time or money. Here are five free online certifications you should check out.

#1: Hubspot Inbound Marketing Certification Course

If you’re interested in adding a certification that can be valuable to a company, consider one of the best free certifications: the Hubspot Inbound Marketing Certification Course. Hubspot’s offering teaches you the basics of SEO, blogging, conversion analysis, and reporting, among other concepts. Specifically, a course in inbound marketing can make you appealing to startups and entrepreneurs interested in hiring someone who can help them grow their businesses.

Bonus: Marketers looking for more cheap certifications can also check out Google Digital Garage for digital certification in search engines and social media, as well as Google’s Academy for Ads to get Adword certified.

#2: FEMA

The Emergency Management Institute, better known as FEMA, offers several different preparedness certifications. If you want to demonstrate that you’re responsible and prepared – or if you want to advance in certain specialized fields – a FEMA certification is worth checking out. This certification does not require much time, and is free to qualifying applicants. It can be obtained after an online test, allowing you to boost your resume skills almost immediately.

#3: Free Code Camp Certifications

Free Code Camp can teach you the basics of HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, GitHub and more. Today, coding is a hugely in-demand technical skill, and this type of skill set makes almost any employee more valuable to a company. Earn quick certifications that can be added to your resume, and when you’re ready, gain some free experience by working on open source projects used by nonprofits. This course is geared toward beginners, walking you through each “challenge” in a step-by-step manner.

#4 Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)

If you want to find free job training, a MOOC from a well-respected university might fit your bill. The open online course system offers a range of subjects, from marketing to writing to history. There are many free courses, like Development Economics: Macroeconomics and Essay Writing, but if your goal is to earn a credential, some courses do require a nominal fee.

#5: Hubspot Inbound Sales Certification Course

Interested in a career in inbound sales? Hubspot’s Free Inbound Sales Certification Course consists of five classes totaling three hours of inbound sales training. When you’ve completed the crash course on sales strategy, you can move on to a 60-question multiple choice certification exam. As long as you answer 45 of those questions correctly, you’ll become certified with a useful new skill.

Certifications are a creative way of naturally adding relevant skills to your ATS resume.

To get an idea of which certifications would benefit your job search the most, try running your resume and an interesting job posting through Jobscan.

Jobscan uses smart curation and machine learning to identify the most important skills to the job. These are the skills you’ll need to back up with experience or certifications.

How to List Certifications on Resume

Now that you know which certifications to include in your resume, let’s talk about how to list those certifications. Knowing where to put your certifications and how to format them will help make sure hiring managers and applicant tracking systems alike can easily locate them.

Keep them in One Place

It’s a good idea to create a section specifically for your certifications at the very bottom of your resume. You can call it “Certifications”, “Professional Training” or “Courses”. This way, your hard-earned certifications will be easy to spot (since hiring managers often need to skim) but won’t crowd your other resume sections.

Get the Order Right

As is true of the other sections in your resume, include dates (in parentheses works well) and list certifications in reverse chronological order, with your most recent course taken at the top. The inclusion of dates and the order in which you list them ensures that the information is parsed correctly by applicant tracking systems.

Make Important Details Bold

You can also use bold font to highlight important details, like the name of a highly-distinguished certification program or a follow-up project you completed as an additional component of the certification.

Here’s an example of how your certifications section should look:

This article was originally published on December 1, 2016. It was updated on February 7, 2018, when A+, OSHA, and Notary Public certifications were replaced by completely free alternatives. 


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