Cloud expertise is what many IT specialists want to possess to succeed in their careers. This is the knowledge that they need to have to be able to perform the tasks required to improve the functioning of their company. This is why Amazon provides the interested individuals with the certification program to allow them to gain the skills they want. Also, with its help, the organizations build effective and innovative teams for the Cloud initiatives using AWS. It is an indisputable fact that the program gives a lot of benefits for both sides.
Amazon Certification Program
The Amazon certification program contains 11 certificates and all of them are presented at 4 levels. It helps the candidates choose what they want and prove the level of the skills they need. All in all, the vendor offers the following options:
1. Foundational Level
This is the very first step that you can take if you want to start your career path with AWS Cloud. This track offers only one option that is known as Amazon AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner. This is an entry-level certification, which is intended for those individuals who have or want to possess an overall understanding of AWS Cloud. They need to pass the CLF-C01 exam to get this certificate. It is recommended to have 6 or more months of experience with AWS Cloud, but it is not a strict requirement to fulfill. You can try to measure your skills in any case if you are sure of your successful outcome.
2. Associate Level
This is the next level you can follow after dealing with the Foundational one. It requires that you have at least one year of hands-on experience solving problems as well as implementing solutions with the use of AWS Cloud. With this level of expertise, it will be much easier for you to understand the content covered in the exam topics. In total, there are three certifications available at this level and they are the following:
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect
It is developed for those candidates who perform the Solutions Architect role or want to become such a professional. Before going for the SAA-C02 test, you need to have a solid understanding of how to design the available, fault-tolerant, scalable, and cost-efficient distributed systems on AWS. It is also recommended that the applicants possess some hands-on experience in deploying AWS and managing services. You should also have a solid understanding of the AWS infrastructure.
- AWS Certified Developer
If you want to get the development role, you can go for this certification and validate your knowledge of the high-level programming languages and AWS security best practices. Amazon DVA-C01 is a prerequisite exam that you need to pass for this path. It will evaluate your skills in using or interacting with AWS services, identifying the key features of AWS services, and deploying the Cloud-based applications with the help of AWS.
- AWS Certified SysOps Administrator
This certificate is ideal for those individuals who want to become a Systems Administrator and deal with the required tasks professionally. The SOA-C01 exam is the one that you have to clear to earn this certification. It validates the skills of the potential candidates in identifying the appropriate use of AWS operational best practices and migrating on-premises workloads to AWS.
3. Professional Level
If the Associate level is not enough for you and you want to go further, you can proceed with the professional-level track. Considering the fact that it validates the skills of a more advanced path, it is recommended to have at least 2 years of comprehensive experience working with design, troubleshooting, and operating solutions with the use of AWS Cloud. It offers only two certificates, including:
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect
This is the perfect option for those who completed the associate-level variant of this path and want to enhance their knowledge of the sector. This certificate shows that you have the skills in designing and deploying the enterprise-wide scalable operations on AWS. You will also prove your ability to select the right AWS services in order to develop and maintain the applications that are based on the given requirements. To obtain the certification, you need to take the SAP-C01 test.
- AWS Certified DevOps Engineer
As for this certification, it is intended for those IT specialists who strive for the DevOps Engineer role and want to get proof of their professional-level skills. To pass the DOP-C01 exam, you should know how to deploy the highly available systems on the AWS platform, scalable systems, or the ones that are self-healing. It is also important to be able to automate operational processes and manage tools to perform this task.
4. Specialist Level
This track can be taken separately from the associate- or professional-level ones to add some technical AWS Cloud experience to the certain IT domains. You can opt for it after finishing the Foundation level or getting one of the associate-level certificates offered in the recommendation sections. There are 5 certifications that you can go for, which include the following:
- AWS Certified Advanced Networking
To be able to pass the ANS-C00 exam and earn this certificate, it is recommended to have at least 5 years of hands-on experience implementing and architecting network solutions. You should also have an advanced knowledge of AWS networking technologies and concepts. With this path, you are able to validate the skills in designing and maintaining network architectures for all the AWS services.
- AWS Certified Data Analytics
As for this certification, it is required to possess 5 or more years of experience with common data analytics technologies as well as more than 2 years of hands-on experience working on AWS. The areas that will be evaluated include the integration of AWS data analytics services and their fitting in the data life cycle of storage, collection, visualization, and processing. The test that you need to complete for this path is Amazon DAS-C01.
- AWS Certified Security
Having this certification means that you have successfully passed the SCS-C01 exam. And being able to complete it means you have all the skills you need to make tradeoff decisions in terms of security, deployment complexity, and cost. This test also validates that you possess a solid knowledge of the data encryption methods, AWS mechanisms, secure Internet protocols, and AWS security services. To be eligible for the exam, you should have 2 or more years of hands-on experience securing AWS workloads.
- AWS Certified Machine Learning
Being able to choose the proper ML approach for a given business problem and identify the needed AWS services to implement the ML solutions are the core skills that are validated by this certification. Therefore, you need to have at least a year of experience designing, architecting, and running ML/deep learning workloads on AWS Cloud. If you possess this level of expertise, you can go for the MLS-C01 exam.
- AWS Certified Database
The last certification available in the Amazon certification program validates the skills in analyzing the requirements and needs to recommend and develop the proper database solutions with the help of AWS services. You need to have 5 or more years of experience with database technologies and more than 2 years of hands-on experience working on AWS. Amazon DBS-C01 is a qualification exam for this path.
To help the potential candidates pass any of the certification exams from the Amazon certification program, the vendor offers various study materials and training options. Thus, you can choose various courses for any of the tests from the huge list of options. For example, you can enroll for the following courses to prepare for the topics you need:
- Architecting on AWS;
- AWS Cloud Practitioner Essentials;
- Developing on AWS;
- Systems Operations on AWS;
- Getting Started with DevOps on AWS;
- Security Engineering on AWS;
- The Elements of Data Science.
Also, the official website provides you with whitepapers and webinars to build or improve your technical skills. If you visit the Amazon platform and create an account there, you will get access to practice tests as well. They can help you improve your test-taking skills and get an understanding of how to deal with the type of questions the real exam contains.
The Amazon certification program can be beneficial for any interested candidate and can open a lot of new doors. Thus, you can become a Cloud Software Engineer, an Operational Support Engineer, a DevOps Engineer, a Cloud Developer, an AWS SysOps Administrator, a Solutions Architect, or a Senior AWS Cloud Architect. There are even more options for you to go for. As for the average salary, you can expect about $137,724 per year.