By Michael Goodenough and Jo Peterson
Cloud computing is a game changer. By removing infrastructure as a barrier to rapid and massive scaling of applications, even the smallest companies can compete on a level playing field. The ease of use and accessibility of infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) make it possible for an application to be created one day and used by thousands the next.
However, cloud is also rapidly evolving. Are you successfully learning – and keeping up with – the language of cloud? That’s critical, because trusted advisers who have made the pivot into the cloud space know that providing the right service to customers is all about asking the right questions.
Our advice: Broaden your knowledge base so you, and your staff, are equipped to have those conversations.
It’s true that you can learn from your vendors. But add in some agnostic certifications and you’re much more likely to stand out from the pack. These certs can also bridge the vocabulary and general knowledge gap. Certifications enable to you to understand exactly what the client needs.
Here are some cloud certifications – both vendor-specific and vendor-independent – that will equip you with the tools to help customers succeed.
- Certificate of Cloud Security Knowledge: The vendor-neutral and well-regarded Cloud Security Alliance CCSK certifies competency in key cloud security areas. The CCSK is a web-based examination.
- Cloud U (Rackspace): Although designed by Rackspace, Cloud U is a vendor-neutral, 10-course curriculum that covers and certifies knowledge of the fundamentals of cloud computing. Each lesson is accompanied by a quiz. The end result of the courses is a certificate.
- CompTIA Cloud Essentials: The CompTIA Cloud Essentials specialty certification is a more holistic approach to cloud. It offers a business and technical perspective and covers the basic fundamentals of cloud computing.
- Cloud Certified Professional: CloudSchool.com offers vendor neutral cloud certifications. Cloud Certified Professional certifications prove proficiency in specific areas of cloud computing. There are certificates for Cloud Architects as well as area based certifications such as Cloud Governance and Cloud Security.
- IBM Certified Cloud: Vendor-specific certification designed to demonstrate the skill set needed to design, plan and architect an IBM cloud computing infrastructure.
- IBM Certified Solution Advisor, Cloud Computing Architecture V4: Completion of this certification will provide the holder with the ability to demonstrate the benefits and underlying concepts of cloud computing as well as equip them to help customers use the IBM product set to realize those benefits.
- Google Certified Deployment Specialist: While not a cloud certification per se, this coursework is complementary. It addresses the abilities required to deploy, configure and migrate to Google Apps.
- VMware Certified Professional: VMware offers six cloud-specific certifications that range from beginner to advanced. These tracks certify knowledge and expertise in virtualization-related technologies.
- Amazon Web Services: AWS has five separate certifications available. While these certs are primarily technical, they are worth exploring for those in the community who have advanced beyond basic concepts and have a large customer base utilizing AWS.
- Microsoft Azure and Productivity: There are a number of cloud certifications available from Microsoft for both systems and productivity suites, as well as Azure PaaS. Use Microsoft partner learning paths to find details about related exams, assessments and readiness.
Cloud Productivity Certifications and Exams for Office 365:
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