Upskilling in Progress: 3 Steps For Highlighting Your Proactivity Before You’re Fully Certified

11/20/2020Staff Writer
Blog post
Facebook iconTwitter iconLinkedin icon

The perfect position doesn’t always come at the right time. Sometimes, we may not be as “ready” on paper as we’d like to be for the application process. Whether it’s things in our lives that are keeping it from being the ideal moment, or we don’t have every requirement that the position calls for, it can seem like it’s just not meant to be. But for those who are either currently in the process of, or about to embark on, the upskilling journey, there are ways to approach this position with confidence and use your current situation to your advantage. Here are just a few things you can try.

Know the Value Behind Your Choice to Pursue a Technical Certificate 

So you’ve just started, or maybe you’re nearing the end, of that certification that’s perfect for the job you’re interviewing for. That’s perfectly fine! Chances are, if you landed the interview, the hiring manager will be just as eager to learn about the proactivity and dedication that set you on this upskilling journey as anything else.

Make sure to have your talking points ready to go on just what it was that pushed you towards adding these new skills and talents to your repertoire. Any organization is going to love to hear that you took matters into your own hands to chase a dream job (like theirs!) or to simply better yourself as a professional. Don’t dwell on the fact that you’re not yet certified. Instead, shift the focus to your excitement about the process and your seriousness about the craft. By pairing a real enthusiasm for the opportunity at hand with the new skills you’re learning, your potential employer will see you as a candidate that’s soon-to-be-qualified, but already fully dedicated.

Demonstrate What You’ve Already Learned From Your Certification

No, you might not have that shiny Google IT or Salesforce Admin certificate in your back pocket just yet, but that doesn’t mean you haven’t picked up a trick or two. If you’ve already been taking the course, you absolutely have plenty to show. So then… show off a little!

During the hiring process, demonstrate just how much you’ve learned. Take anything you’ve already picked up from your certification process and use it in the interview to show that not only are you well on your way to mastering this field, but that you’re a quick learner who is eager to broaden their skillset. The organization you’re speaking with will be able to tell just how far down the road you already are, while knowing that you are the type of driven person any company would be lucky to have.

Keep Your Eyes on What’s Next

Just because you’re still waiting to finish your certification doesn’t mean you can’t take a look at your next challenge. An eye to the future is what has you upskilling to begin with, so lean into that desirable trait when you can. Employers love candidates who strive for more.

Take a look at other avenues for upskilling that you may be interested in in the future. Whether it’s for the position you’re interested in, or just other skills that you’d want to add, it’s always best to have a plan for your next big thing. Your potential employer will love to hear that even though you’re not even done with your current certification, you’ve already got plans for what you will do when you knock this one out of the park. 


Being in the middle of a certificate course doesn’t have to be a burden when you’re going after that great fit. If you play it right, you actually might even be able to use it to your advantage. So go ahead and apply for jobs while you upskill, because some lucky organization could always use a candidate who never stops improving.