If one thing is certain in IT, it’s never too late to cash in on the cloud. As the cloud becomes more critical to IT and the business at large, demand for cloud skills will only grow. But proving you have the right skills and knowledge in a competitive job market can be difficult. If you’re looking for an extra edge in landing a new job or promotion, cloud certification can be a great option.
If you haven’t certified on a cloud platform, then what are you waiting for? It’s 2017. Forbes projects that IT budgets will be heading to the cloud soon — even if yours isn’t already. Obviously, you’ll want to certify on the technology in your system, but there are additional certs you can get started with today to help you guide your path to the cloud. Given this background—and each vendor’s focus on certification—we’ll take a look at certifications for Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, VMware, Cisco, and finally Google.
The AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam is intended for individuals with experience designing distributed applications and systems on the AWS platform. The Certified Solutions Architect – Associate proves to employers, partners and clients that you’re a skilled AWS pro. Because of this, it consistently ranks as one of the highest paying certifications; AWS Architects earn a median salary of £75,000 (ITJobsWatch, 2017).
This is Microsoft’s most advanced cloud certification and should be considered the crowning achievement of a cloud professional’s career. It recognises your ability to run efficient, modern data centres and qualifies you for high-responsibility jobs like cloud architect.
To achieve it, you’ll need to first obtain one of four Microsoft MCSA certifications:
- MCSA: Windows Server 2012 or MCSA: Windows Server 2016
- MCSA: Cloud Platform
- MCSA: Linux on Azure
The CCNA Cloud certification is a job role focused certification and training program that helps Cloud engineers, Cloud Administrators, and Network Engineers to develop, advance, and validate their cloud skill set, and enables them to help their IT organization meet changing business demands from technology transitions.
With a CCNA Cloud certification, you will obtain the skills to perform entry-level provisioning and support of Cisco cloud solutions and services like: Cisco UCS and server virtualisation, United Fabric and Unified Storage.
VMware kick-started the virtualization and cloud computing movement. They were also the first to introduce software-defined data centers. This industry-recognized certification validates that you know how to implement, manage, and troubleshoot a vSphere V6.5 infrastructure, using best practices to provide a powerful, flexible, and secure foundation for business agility that can accelerate the transformation to cloud computing. This is a path if you’re new on this technology :
- Gain experience with vSphere 6.5 (minimum 6 months recommended).
- Attend one of the required training courses at an authorized commercial training center.
- Pass the vSphere 6 Foundations Exam or vSphere 6.5 Foundations Exam.
- Pass the VMware Certified Professional 6.5 – Data Center Virtualization Exam.
Google Cloud Platform (GCP) appears to be growing as quickly as Azure, with usage climbing from 10% to 15% in 2017. A Professional Cloud Architect enables organizations to leverage Google Cloud technologies. With a thorough understanding of cloud architecture and Google Cloud Platform, this individual can design, develop, and manage robust, secure, scalable, highly available, and dynamic solutions to drive business objectives.
CompTIA is the world’s leading provider of vendor-neutral certifications, having issued over two million since 1993. Alongside longstanding industry certifications, like the A+ and Network+, CompTIA also provide two cloud computing certifications: Cloud+ and Cloud Essentials.
The CompTIA Cloud+ is a robust entry-level certification aimed at professionals with 1-2 years’ experience working with networks, storage or data centre admin. Not to be confused with CompTIA’s Cloud Essentials, which is designed as an introduction to cloud for non-IT professionals. Passing the Cloud+ will prove your knowledge of cloud models, virtualisation, infrastructure, security, resources management and business continuity. You must pass the (CV0-002) exam.
In the ever-changing world of the cloud, you face unique security challenges every day — from new threats to sensitive data, to uneducated internal teams. The CCSP certification (Certified Cloud Security Professional) builds and proves cloud security skills at an expert level and is backed by two leading non-profits: Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) and (ISC)². When you earn this cloud security certification, you prove you have deep knowledge and hands-on experience with cloud security architecture, design, operations and service orchestration. You’ll even focus on compliance, legality, audit processes and privacy – particularly relevant with the introduction of GDPR in May 2018.
If you’re responsible for managing and securing cloud environment, (ISC)²’s CCSP is among the best expert-level certifications you can get in 2018.
Now it’s your turn to choose the better path of your success and expertise in the beautiful and innovative field of Cloud Computing.