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What is the Learning Path to Become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate?

The AWS Solutions Architect – Associate certification is designed to help you in architecting and deploying AWS solutions using AWS’ best practices. The training content consists of about 70 hours of content with video courses, hands-on labs, and a preparation exam. After getting certified, you will be able to architect, secure, manage, and optimize deployment and operations on the AWS platform.The aim of this certification is to help you demonstrate your skills in key areas like:Designing and deploying highly available, reliable, dynamically scalable, and fault-tolerant applications on the AWS platform.Choosing the right AWS service for the application.Implementing strategies for cost control.Designing and deploying enterprise-wide scalable operations on the AWS platform.The exam will cover 5 domains which can be broken down as:Designing organization complexity – 12.5%Designing new solutions – 31%Cost optimization – 12.5%Planning for migration – 15%Improving existing solutions – 29%AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate learning pathLearning path to become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate is designed in such a way that anyone can learn designing systems and applications on the AWS platform. With these recommended courses, laboratories, and examinations, you will be able to build your skills and move along to the path of getting the AWS certification. The learning path for AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate can be defined as:1. AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner or AWS Technical EssentialsAWS Certified Cloud Practitioner Exam is a 1.5 hours long digital exam that will test your knowledge of the AWS cloud. The certification will validate your knowledge in four domains: cloud concept, technology, security, and billing & pricing.AWS Technical essentials course cover the fundamentals of the AWS services to help you make informed decisions regarding the IT solutions required to fulfill your business needs.k2. Architecting on AWSArchitecting on AWS is a 3-days long classroom course that covers the basic concepts of using the AWS platform to build IT infrastructure. After this course, you will be able to build resilient and scalable solutions in the cloud.3. Exam Readiness: Solutions Architect – AssociateThis Exam Readiness: Solutions Architect –Associate intermediate-level, classroom course is 4-hours long that covers all the topic areas of the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam. You will be reviewing the same questions from each topic and map them to architecting on AWS. This will help you focus on specific areas of study.4. AWS Certified Solutions Architect – AssociateThis is a 130 minutes long exam that will validate your skills in architecting and deploying robust and secure applications on the AWS platform.AWS Solutions Architect’s Roles and ResponsibilitiesRole and Responsibilities of a Solutions Architect are following:Conducting evaluations, designing and analyzing the systems used in the enterprise.Stimulating appropriate design by leveraging the evaluation of the industry’s strength using tools like IBM Rational.Ensuring delivery of robust business solutions by the application architecture team.Developing, enhancing, and maintaining service design process for assuring robust design.Working closely with the enterprise architect for assuring constant compliance of strategies, architecture, and blueprints. Providing architect team with solutions alert for developing business-oriented project.Planning, designing, and executing storage solutions for the company.Ensuring the testing assistance for developing storage solutions.Preparing and presenting test plans, presentations, reports, analysis briefings, and white papers.Suggest practices that can be used for developing storage solutions.Collaborating with the IT team to make sure that the architectural solutions can be effectively implemented.Managing the platform layout and continuing configuration of storage infrastructure.Identifying requirements of the customer, analyzing alternatives, and conducting recommendations for the product.Conversing with sales personnel and performing demonstrations.AWS Certified Solutions Architect RequirementsOnce the organization has understood what are the roles and responsibilities of a Solutions Architect, they can start recruiting the right person for the job. A good Solutions Architect must have the following core skills:Technical background:As a solutions architect, you will be required to have working experience in the IT sector that includes IT infrastructure, architecture, and cloud development, business analysis, product/project management, DevOps, Software architecture design, etc.Communications skills:A Solutions Architect has to negotiate with the stakeholders, understand the need of the customer, and manage product delivery and risks. You must be good at listening, advising, and explaining as you will be working with software architects, project teams, and business analysts.Deep analytical skills:You must have an understanding of how the business works. You must be good at recognizing the strategies and processes that will help the organization achieve its goals. This way, you can deal with analytics as well as move between different business layers.Management skills:Even though they won’t be directly involved in the management of the project, they will have to account for given resources and deadlines. They must be able to make decisions about what works for the project and what does not. They are focused on giving satisfying business results in the given resources and timeframe.To achieve this, you must have a Bachelor’s degree or higher in IT, Computer Science, Software Engineering or any other related field. Additional certifications from AWS, Microsoft, IBM, etc. are optional but impactful. You must have in-depth knowledge of computer systems, web platforms, database management, operating systems, and security measures. You must also be able to communicate information to technical as well as non-technical members of the team. To fulfill these requirements, you can follow these steps:DegreeYou will need a bachelor’s or higher degree in the field of computer science, information technology, or software engineering. During your undergraduate program, topics like hardware compatibility training, operating systems, etc. will be covered. If you are going for a Master’s degree, you will be needing specialization in systems architecture. Some others go for MBA in Information Systems. In the Master’s degree coursework, concepts like systems design, software engineering, project management, and advanced computer architecture are included. In some colleges, along with the undergraduate training, a graduate-level certification is offered in systems architecture. During college, you must work on your communications skills as you will be working as a liaison between the engineers and the business managers. You must also be able to communicate your needs to the non-technical employees. CertificationIt is not mandatory. However, it will display your expertise as a solutions architect. Some organizations even ask the solutions architects working for them to get periodic training or get certified. Many organizations that provide these certification programs in enterprise and systems architecture offer programs for teams and individuals. ExperienceRelevant working experience will help advance your career. It must be in the field of business intelligence tools or complex database management system. During this time, you will be learning about different software programs and technology platforms. Also, you can try taking independent contractor jobs.AWS Solutions Architect Certification validityThe AWS Solutions Architect Certification is created for professionals who have experience in creating distributed applications. With this certification, you will be able to validate your skills of designing, implementing, and managing applications using the services and tools provided on the AWS platform. To get this certification, you will be required to take a 130 minutes long multiple-choice, multiple-answer exam that costs 150 USD. In the exam, the following areas will be covered:Using network technologies on the AWS platformConnecting the AWS platform to the client’s interfaceBuilding reliable and secure applicationsDeveloping hybrid systems with AWS components and on-premises data centerDesigning scalable and highly available systems on AWSImplementing and deploying applications on AWSData security practices, troubleshooting, and disaster recovery methods used on AWSAWS certification uses its thoroughness and rigor for evaluating the skills of a candidate. They focus on best practices and hands-on experience. If your organization uses AWS, a certification will clear your concepts and strengthening your knowledge. If you have no experience working on AWS, the certification will build a foundation of skills and knowledge used for working with AWS solutions. With the AWS certifications, you will have validated your expertise in some of the most profitable and in-demand skills from the most reputed and recognizable service provider in cloud computing. AWS is still the number one provider of public cloud computing, where 68% of SMBs and 64% of enterprises are running applications on the AWS platform.Once you get the AWS certification, it will be valid for 3 years from the date you passed your certification exam. For maintaining the status of your AWS certification, you have to demonstrate your expertise periodically through recertification. It will not only strengthen the value of your certificate but also display to your employers that you have the latest knowledge, best practices, and skills related to AWS.For recertifying the AWS Certified Solutions Architect- Associate, you can just retake the current exam. You will get a 50% discount voucher in the benefits section of the AWS certification exam. Also, you can just earn a professional-level certificate that will satisfy your associate-level recertification requirement.There is an AWS Certification Program Agreement containing terms for governing your participation in the certification program, entering the AWS, Inc., which is a part of the customer agreement. To get an AWS certification, you must have:Taken the certification exam and passedComplied with the requirements of the AWS certificationAdhered to the rules and regulations applied on the programWhen you have the AWS certificate and are working on the AWS platform, you must be:Conducting activities in a competent and professional mannerPromoting the AWS services maintaining its name and reputationNot making any guarantees, warranties, and representations related to AWS or its features, specifications, and capabilitiesNot engaging in any false, illegal or deceptive practicesComplying with the terms of the customer agreementAs a holder of the AWS certification, you have the right to use the name of your AWS certification. This right is revoked when your AWS certification is terminated or no longer valid. Also, AWS can revoke your license at any time by giving you a written notice.AWS Solutions Architect Associate Required SkillsSolutions architect is an in-demand tech job. Organizations are hiring Solutions Architects to help them design and develop advanced cloud-based solutions as well as migrate their infrastructure and workload to the existing AWS cloud. There are limitless virtual resources on the AWS platform that can be provisioned and disposed of. With these many resources available at their disposal, a Solutions Architect must have the skills to handle the data and infrastructure. Here are a few skills a solutions architect must have:1. Programming languageIt is the most basic and important skills for a Solutions Architect. Since they have a background in software development, this won’t be new to them. As a solutions architect, you must be skilled in Python, Java, C# or any programming language with an official AWS SDK. Having programming skills will help you to create logical and viable solutions. Also, it can be used for creating a demo or proof of concept for showing a point or learning how to use the latest technology.2. NetworkingKnowledge of networks like DNS, VP, HTTP, TCP/IP, and CDN will help you in creating a scalable and secure cloud-based solutions. You must also have working experience in services like CloudFront (CDN), Route 53 (DNS), and Virtual Private Cloud (VPC). This will help you in using the public as well as private subnets, VPC peering, and internet access for designing your cloud network.3. Data StorageAs a Solutions Architect, you must have knowledge of databases. There are several data storage options available on the AWS platform. This includes powerful and simple bucket storage like S3, relational database service, and Hadoop clusters. To select the one for your company’s data, you will have to compare different databases’ performance, capabilities, and price.4. SecurityThere are services and guidelines laid down by the AWS like securing access to your data and AWS account to ensure that only authorized people and code are allowed for performing specific tasks. You must also have a thorough understanding of the Identity and Access Management (IAM) that is used for defining which user and services can access the resources. You need to learn about securing your network through Access Control Lists and Security Groups.5. AWS Service SelectionWhen it comes to cloud architecture, AWS provides several front-end as well as back-end technologies. As a solutions architect, you must have the skills required for knowing which services are relevant to your organization. You must know what your end goal is. For this, you must have knowledge of SNS (notifications), SQS (Simple Queuing), RDS (Relational Database Service), and IoT related services.6. Cloud-specific technologiesThere are different rules while using cloud. As long as you correctly design and harness AWS infrastructure, availability, scalability, and recovery are comparatively easy. To create cost-effective and scalable applications, you need to use storing state and messages, and handle failures correctly. If you want to create applications which can be scaled through creating instances of the same service, you need to use patterns like eventual consistency, queuing, and pub/sub.7. CommunicationYou need to be able to explain your vision to managers, software developers, and fellow architects through documents, emails and presentations. You need to learn how to write in a concise, clear way, presenting your idea and displaying complex environments through diagramming tools. Apart from the above-mentioned skills, you must have the following relevant working experience:Software developmentData securityNetworkingAWSAlso, you must have hands-on experience working with Linux, the architect’s toolbox (Chef, Puppet, Docker, Capistrano, Jenkins, and Ansible), Infrastructure as code (CloudFormation), advanced project management tools, etc.Why Architecting in AWS?With Architecting in AWS, you will be able to perform the following:Application of the frameworkManaging multiple accounts for the organizationConnecting the AWS cloud to the on-premises dataDiscussing the billing to connect VPCs of multi-regionTransferring large data to AWS from the on-premises data centerDesigning large data centersUnderstanding architectural designs used to scale a large websiteProtecting the infrastructureUsing encryption to secure the dataEnhancing the solutions’ performanceOnce you get the AWS Solutions Architect certification, you will have a high-opportunity market and greater earning potential. This certification is one of the best paying certifications in the IT sector. It is perfect for people working on improving their AWS cloud skills pursuing a worthy certification path. Also, Solutions Architect working on the AWS with the certification can get an average annual salary of $114,000.AWS Certified Solutions Architect Exam ScheduleTo prepare for the AWS Certified Solutions Architect exam, you will need at least three months during which, you will cover the AWS ecosystem and general concepts of cloud computing. The first step is to create a document where you will mention everything that you will learn. This will be your study guide.The first monthThe task for the first month is to lay the groundwork. In this, you will get an introduction to the Ecosystem of AWS and how core AWS services interact with each other. It is the hardest month. So, you need to stay focused and vigilant.The second monthThis month you build the foundation. You need to keep up with your pace. During this month, you will be covering concepts like auto-scaling, load balancing, etc.The third monthUp until now, you have covered all the important topics. Now, you have to do some reading, go through FAQs and white papers. Also, study the best AWS practicesOnce you think you are ready, you can schedule your exam. To schedule your AWS Certified Solutions Architect exam, you need to follow the below-mentioned steps:Sign in to aws.training. Next, click Certification in the top navigation.Click AWS Certification Account, followed by Schedule New Exam.AWS Certified Solutions Architect salary in IndiaAWS certification exams are in great demand and are now offered in multiple languages across the globe. As more and more companies are making the move to AWS, it has led to an increase in salaries of professionals who are AWS certified. Designed for solutions architects, system operations administrators, and developers, AWS certifications are role based. So they can be used by candidates working at associate as well as professional level. For solutions architect, AWS offers certifications for the associate and professional level. To be eligible for the professional level certification, you must have the associate level certification.In India, the average pay for an AWS Certified Solutions Architect is Rs 10,00,000. Your salary will also depend on your experience in terms of prior knowledge of database, operating system, network, and best practices used in AWS. Also, your expertise level varies with the certification you have. An AWS certification will help you get priority over other professionals.With so many job profiles, it is clear the cloud computing jobs are increasing every year. According to the report by Gartner Forecasts Worldwide, the market of Cloud computing is expected to reach $411B by the year 2020. Also, from the year 2015 to 2018, the AWS adoption rate has increased to 68%.AWS Certified Solutions Architect Exam If you want to get started in cloud computing and start developing applications on the AWS platform, you need to have an in-depth knowledge of the services offered by the AWS. For this, you need AWS certification. For solutions architect, there is an associate-level and a professional-level certification. Once you have prepared for the exam, you need to get ready for it. For this, you need to understand the following:1. Types of QuestionsIf you have been taking practice tests, you will have a firm grasp on the subject. Every certification exam covers certain material and you must have a thorough understanding of every concept to be confident. AWS certification exams have multiple choice and/or multiple answer questions. All the questions are real-world scenario based with charts and graphs for more detail. To test your knowledge, ambiguous questions are written.2. Format of the examAll the certification exams offered by AWS have the same format where at a time, only one question is displayed. There is an option to mark the question for later. After you have gone through all the questions, a list of every answered question will be displayed. The selected options will be displayed as letters. There will an asterisk next to the questions that were marked for later. 3. Cost and duration of the Certification examThe cost of the associate-level certification is $150 while the professional-level certification costs $300. The duration also varies for both the exam. For the associate-level, the duration is 130 minutes while that for the professional-level is 170 minutes.4. Environment for the testYou can use Pearson VUE or the PSI network for taking the AWS exam. For admission, you will have to show two personal identifications at the exam center. The primary identification includes a valid driver’s license issued by the government and passport. For secondary identification, you can either use a second primary ID form or your debit card.  There are no personal items, food, and drinks allowed in the test area. Also, people wearing watches, eyewear, or GPS tracking device will be inspected. You can request paper, pencil, marker, or whiteboard.AWS Certified Solutions Architect Exam Retake PolicyGetting AWS certified will help bring tremendous job growth and multiple job opportunities. One of the most common questions people ask is what to do if you fail the certification exam. There can be many reasons behind this like inadequate preparation or it might not have been just your day. One thing to remember is that you shouldn’t be afraid of failure. Worrying about whether you can pass the certification exam or not will only hinder your preparation. There are a lot of people who have failed the AWS certification exam. After all, they are difficult exams which can separate masters in AWS from the others. You need to remember that plenty of people pass the certification exam too. Having stress of the exam is common. The important thing is to remember how to manage that stress. Every now and then, you need to take a break and maintain the work-life balance. When there are just a few days left for the exam, you will start to doubt yourself and feel underprepared. Take a deep breath and remember that you have worked hard and prepared well for the exam.After you have taken the exam, you will be immediately shown your results on the screen. However, there is no single passing score. Instead, AWS has a statistical method to determine if you passed or failed. The passing scores change every exam. If you win the exam, you will receive an AWS Certified logo, digital badge, and an e-certificate within 72 hours. However, if even after all the preparation you still fail, don’t feel disappointed. It is a tough exam and not everyone clears in first attempt. You will be eligible to retake the exam after 14 days. There is no exam limit. You can retake the exam as many times as you want. However, for every attempt, you will have to pay the complete registration price. For beta exam test takers, only one attempt is available.After AWS Solutions Architect CertificationAfter you have passed the exam, within 72 hours, you will get an AWS Certified logo, a digital badge and an e-certificate in your AWS account. You can use the digital badges to display your status on Facebook, LinkedIn or any other social media website. Within 5 days of finishing the exam, you will receive a transcript of your results.The IT landscape is shifting more and more towards cloud computing. This has led to an increase in prominence of the AWS. And with this certification, you will be ready for the change as the following skills will be validated by a renowned brand:Architecting and deploying robust and secure applications using the AWSUsing the principles of architectural design for defining a solution that fulfills all the requirements of the customer.Using the best practices for implementation.After you get your certificate, you should start working on projects. If you have old projects hosted on a web server, you can migrate them on to the AWS platform.All the figures mentioned above are accurate as of August 2019 and are sourced from online job portals such as Indeed.com, Salary.com, Glassdoor.com, etc.

What is the Learning Path to Become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate?

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  • by Joydip Kumar
  • 06th Sep, 2019
  • Last updated on 11th Mar, 2021
  • 15 mins read
What is the Learning Path to Become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect Associate?

The AWS Solutions Architect – Associate certification is designed to help you in architecting and deploying AWS solutions using AWS’ best practices. The training content consists of about 70 hours of content with video courses, hands-on labs, and a preparation exam. After getting certified, you will be able to architect, secure, manage, and optimize deployment and operations on the AWS platform.

The aim of this certification is to help you demonstrate your skills in key areas like:

  • Designing and deploying highly available, reliable, dynamically scalable, and fault-tolerant applications on the AWS platform.
  • Choosing the right AWS service for the application.
  • Implementing strategies for cost control.
  • Designing and deploying enterprise-wide scalable operations on the AWS platform.

The exam will cover 5 domains which can be broken down as:

AWS exam Covers 5 domains

  1. Designing organization complexity – 12.5%
  2. Designing new solutions – 31%
  3. Cost optimization – 12.5%
  4. Planning for migration – 15%
  5. Improving existing solutions – 29%

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate learning path

AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate learning path

Learning path to become an AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate is designed in such a way that anyone can learn designing systems and applications on the AWS platform. With these recommended courses, laboratories, and examinations, you will be able to build your skills and move along to the path of getting the AWS certification. The learning path for AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate can be defined as:

1. AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner or AWS Technical Essentials

AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner Exam is a 1.5 hours long digital exam that will test your knowledge of the AWS cloud. The certification will validate your knowledge in four domains: cloud concept, technology, security, and billing & pricing.

AWS Technical essentials course cover the fundamentals of the AWS services to help you make informed decisions regarding the IT solutions required to fulfill your business needs.k

2. Architecting on AWS

Architecting on AWS is a 3-days long classroom course that covers the basic concepts of using the AWS platform to build IT infrastructure. After this course, you will be able to build resilient and scalable solutions in the cloud.

3. Exam Readiness: Solutions Architect – Associate

This Exam Readiness: Solutions Architect –Associate intermediate-level, classroom course is 4-hours long that covers all the topic areas of the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate exam. You will be reviewing the same questions from each topic and map them to architecting on AWS. This will help you focus on specific areas of study.

4. AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate

This is a 130 minutes long exam that will validate your skills in architecting and deploying robust and secure applications on the AWS platform.

AWS Solutions Architect’s Roles and Responsibilities

Role and Responsibilities of a Solutions Architect are following:

  1. Conducting evaluations, designing and analyzing the systems used in the enterprise.
  2. Stimulating appropriate design by leveraging the evaluation of the industry’s strength using tools like IBM Rational.
  3. Ensuring delivery of robust business solutions by the application architecture team.
  4. Developing, enhancing, and maintaining service design process for assuring robust design.
  5. Working closely with the enterprise architect for assuring constant compliance of strategies, architecture, and blueprints. 
  6. Providing architect team with solutions alert for developing business-oriented project.
  7. Planning, designing, and executing storage solutions for the company.
  8. Ensuring the testing assistance for developing storage solutions.
  9. Preparing and presenting test plans, presentations, reports, analysis briefings, and white papers.
  10. Suggest practices that can be used for developing storage solutions.
  11. Collaborating with the IT team to make sure that the architectural solutions can be effectively implemented.
  12. Managing the platform layout and continuing configuration of storage infrastructure.
  13. Identifying requirements of the customer, analyzing alternatives, and conducting recommendations for the product.
  14. Conversing with sales personnel and performing demonstrations.

AWS Certified Solutions Architect Requirements

Once the organization has understood what are the roles and responsibilities of a Solutions Architect, they can start recruiting the right person for the job. A good Solutions Architect must have the following core skills:

  • Technical background:

As a solutions architect, you will be required to have working experience in the IT sector that includes IT infrastructure, architecture, and cloud development, business analysis, product/project management, DevOps, Software architecture design, etc.

  • Communications skills:

A Solutions Architect has to negotiate with the stakeholders, understand the need of the customer, and manage product delivery and risks. You must be good at listening, advising, and explaining as you will be working with software architects, project teams, and business analysts.

  • Deep analytical skills:

You must have an understanding of how the business works. You must be good at recognizing the strategies and processes that will help the organization achieve its goals. This way, you can deal with analytics as well as move between different business layers.

  • Management skills:

Even though they won’t be directly involved in the management of the project, they will have to account for given resources and deadlines. They must be able to make decisions about what works for the project and what does not. They are focused on giving satisfying business results in the given resources and timeframe.

To achieve this, you must have a Bachelor’s degree or higher in IT, Computer Science, Software Engineering or any other related field. Additional certifications from AWS, Microsoft, IBM, etc. are optional but impactful. You must have in-depth knowledge of computer systems, web platforms, database management, operating systems, and security measures. You must also be able to communicate information to technical as well as non-technical members of the team. 

To fulfill these requirements, you can follow these steps:

  • Degree

You will need a bachelor’s or higher degree in the field of computer science, information technology, or software engineering. During your undergraduate program, topics like hardware compatibility training, operating systems, etc. will be covered. If you are going for a Master’s degree, you will be needing specialization in systems architecture. Some others go for MBA in Information Systems. In the Master’s degree coursework, concepts like systems design, software engineering, project management, and advanced computer architecture are included. In some colleges, along with the undergraduate training, a graduate-level certification is offered in systems architecture. During college, you must work on your communications skills as you will be working as a liaison between the engineers and the business managers. You must also be able to communicate your needs to the non-technical employees. 

  • Certification

It is not mandatory. However, it will display your expertise as a solutions architect. Some organizations even ask the solutions architects working for them to get periodic training or get certified. Many organizations that provide these certification programs in enterprise and systems architecture offer programs for teams and individuals. 

  • Experience

Relevant working experience will help advance your career. It must be in the field of business intelligence tools or complex database management system. During this time, you will be learning about different software programs and technology platforms. Also, you can try taking independent contractor jobs.

AWS Solutions Architect Certification validity

The AWS Solutions Architect Certification is created for professionals who have experience in creating distributed applications. With this certification, you will be able to validate your skills of designing, implementing, and managing applications using the services and tools provided on the AWS platform. To get this certification, you will be required to take a 130 minutes long multiple-choice, multiple-answer exam that costs 150 USD. In the exam, the following areas will be covered:

  • Using network technologies on the AWS platform
  • Connecting the AWS platform to the client’s interface
  • Building reliable and secure applications
  • Developing hybrid systems with AWS components and on-premises data center
  • Designing scalable and highly available systems on AWS
  • Implementing and deploying applications on AWS
  • Data security practices, troubleshooting, and disaster recovery methods used on AWS

AWS certification uses its thoroughness and rigor for evaluating the skills of a candidate. They focus on best practices and hands-on experience. If your organization uses AWS, a certification will clear your concepts and strengthening your knowledge. If you have no experience working on AWS, the certification will build a foundation of skills and knowledge used for working with AWS solutions. With the AWS certifications, you will have validated your expertise in some of the most profitable and in-demand skills from the most reputed and recognizable service provider in cloud computing. AWS is still the number one provider of public cloud computing, where 68% of SMBs and 64% of enterprises are running applications on the AWS platform.

Once you get the AWS certification, it will be valid for 3 years from the date you passed your certification exam. For maintaining the status of your AWS certification, you have to demonstrate your expertise periodically through recertification. It will not only strengthen the value of your certificate but also display to your employers that you have the latest knowledge, best practices, and skills related to AWS.

For recertifying the AWS Certified Solutions Architect- Associate, you can just retake the current exam. You will get a 50% discount voucher in the benefits section of the AWS certification exam. Also, you can just earn a professional-level certificate that will satisfy your associate-level recertification requirement.

There is an AWS Certification Program Agreement containing terms for governing your participation in the certification program, entering the AWS, Inc., which is a part of the customer agreement. To get an AWS certification, you must have:

  • Taken the certification exam and passed
  • Complied with the requirements of the AWS certification
  • Adhered to the rules and regulations applied on the program

When you have the AWS certificate and are working on the AWS platform, you must be:

  • Conducting activities in a competent and professional manner
  • Promoting the AWS services maintaining its name and reputation
  • Not making any guarantees, warranties, and representations related to AWS or its features, specifications, and capabilities
  • Not engaging in any false, illegal or deceptive practices
  • Complying with the terms of the customer agreement

As a holder of the AWS certification, you have the right to use the name of your AWS certification. This right is revoked when your AWS certification is terminated or no longer valid. Also, AWS can revoke your license at any time by giving you a written notice.

AWS Solutions Architect Associate Required Skills
AWS Solutions Architect Associate Required Skills

Solutions architect is an in-demand tech job. Organizations are hiring Solutions Architects to help them design and develop advanced cloud-based solutions as well as migrate their infrastructure and workload to the existing AWS cloud. There are limitless virtual resources on the AWS platform that can be provisioned and disposed of. With these many resources available at their disposal, a Solutions Architect must have the skills to handle the data and infrastructure. Here are a few skills a solutions architect must have:

1. Programming language

It is the most basic and important skills for a Solutions Architect. Since they have a background in software development, this won’t be new to them. As a solutions architect, you must be skilled in Python, Java, C# or any programming language with an official AWS SDK. Having programming skills will help you to create logical and viable solutions. Also, it can be used for creating a demo or proof of concept for showing a point or learning how to use the latest technology.

2. Networking

Knowledge of networks like DNS, VP, HTTP, TCP/IP, and CDN will help you in creating a scalable and secure cloud-based solutions. You must also have working experience in services like CloudFront (CDN), Route 53 (DNS), and Virtual Private Cloud (VPC). This will help you in using the public as well as private subnets, VPC peering, and internet access for designing your cloud network.

3. Data Storage

As a Solutions Architect, you must have knowledge of databases. There are several data storage options available on the AWS platform. This includes powerful and simple bucket storage like S3, relational database service, and Hadoop clusters. To select the one for your company’s data, you will have to compare different databases’ performance, capabilities, and price.

4. Security

There are services and guidelines laid down by the AWS like securing access to your data and AWS account to ensure that only authorized people and code are allowed for performing specific tasks. You must also have a thorough understanding of the Identity and Access Management (IAM) that is used for defining which user and services can access the resources. You need to learn about securing your network through Access Control Lists and Security Groups.

5. AWS Service Selection

When it comes to cloud architecture, AWS provides several front-end as well as back-end technologies. As a solutions architect, you must have the skills required for knowing which services are relevant to your organization. You must know what your end goal is. For this, you must have knowledge of SNS (notifications), SQS (Simple Queuing), RDS (Relational Database Service), and IoT related services.

6. Cloud-specific technologies

There are different rules while using cloud. As long as you correctly design and harness AWS infrastructure, availability, scalability, and recovery are comparatively easy. To create cost-effective and scalable applications, you need to use storing state and messages, and handle failures correctly. If you want to create applications which can be scaled through creating instances of the same service, you need to use patterns like eventual consistency, queuing, and pub/sub.

7. Communication

You need to be able to explain your vision to managers, software developers, and fellow architects through documents, emails and presentations. You need to learn how to write in a concise, clear way, presenting your idea and displaying complex environments through diagramming tools. 

Apart from the above-mentioned skills, you must have the following relevant working experience:

  1. Software development
  2. Data security
  3. Networking
  4. AWS

Also, you must have hands-on experience working with Linux, the architect’s toolbox (Chef, Puppet, Docker, Capistrano, Jenkins, and Ansible), Infrastructure as code (CloudFormation), advanced project management tools, etc.

Why Architecting in AWS?

With Architecting in AWS, you will be able to perform the following:

  • Application of the framework
  • Managing multiple accounts for the organization
  • Connecting the AWS cloud to the on-premises data
  • Discussing the billing to connect VPCs of multi-region
  • Transferring large data to AWS from the on-premises data center
  • Designing large data centers
  • Understanding architectural designs used to scale a large website
  • Protecting the infrastructure
  • Using encryption to secure the data
  • Enhancing the solutions’ performance

Once you get the AWS Solutions Architect certification, you will have a high-opportunity market and greater earning potential. This certification is one of the best paying certifications in the IT sector. It is perfect for people working on improving their AWS cloud skills pursuing a worthy certification path. Also, Solutions Architect working on the AWS with the certification can get an average annual salary of $114,000.

AWS Certified Solutions Architect Exam Schedule

AWS Certified Solutions Architect Exam Schedule

To prepare for the AWS Certified Solutions Architect exam, you will need at least three months during which, you will cover the AWS ecosystem and general concepts of cloud computing. The first step is to create a document where you will mention everything that you will learn. This will be your study guide.

  • The first month

The task for the first month is to lay the groundwork. In this, you will get an introduction to the Ecosystem of AWS and how core AWS services interact with each other. It is the hardest month. So, you need to stay focused and vigilant.

  • The second month

This month you build the foundation. You need to keep up with your pace. During this month, you will be covering concepts like auto-scaling, load balancing, etc.

  • The third month

Up until now, you have covered all the important topics. Now, you have to do some reading, go through FAQs and white papers. Also, study the best AWS practices

Once you think you are ready, you can schedule your exam. To schedule your AWS Certified Solutions Architect exam, you need to follow the below-mentioned steps:

  1. Sign in to aws.training. Next, click Certification in the top navigation.
  2. Click AWS Certification Account, followed by Schedule New Exam.

AWS Certified Solutions Architect salary in India

AWS certification exams are in great demand and are now offered in multiple languages across the globe. As more and more companies are making the move to AWS, it has led to an increase in salaries of professionals who are AWS certified. Designed for solutions architects, system operations administrators, and developers, AWS certifications are role based. So they can be used by candidates working at associate as well as professional level. For solutions architect, AWS offers certifications for the associate and professional level. To be eligible for the professional level certification, you must have the associate level certification.

In India, the average pay for an AWS Certified Solutions Architect is Rs 10,00,000. 

Your salary will also depend on your experience in terms of prior knowledge of database, operating system, network, and best practices used in AWS. Also, your expertise level varies with the certification you have. An AWS certification will help you get priority over other professionals.

With so many job profiles, it is clear the cloud computing jobs are increasing every year. According to the report by Gartner Forecasts Worldwide, the market of Cloud computing is expected to reach $411B by the year 2020. Also, from the year 2015 to 2018, the AWS adoption rate has increased to 68%.

AWS Certified Solutions Architect Exam 

If you want to get started in cloud computing and start developing applications on the AWS platform, you need to have an in-depth knowledge of the services offered by the AWS. For this, you need AWS certification. For solutions architect, there is an associate-level and a professional-level certification. Once you have prepared for the exam, you need to get ready for it. For this, you need to understand the following:

1. Types of Questions

If you have been taking practice tests, you will have a firm grasp on the subject. Every certification exam covers certain material and you must have a thorough understanding of every concept to be confident. AWS certification exams have multiple choice and/or multiple answer questions. All the questions are real-world scenario based with charts and graphs for more detail. To test your knowledge, ambiguous questions are written.

2. Format of the exam

All the certification exams offered by AWS have the same format where at a time, only one question is displayed. There is an option to mark the question for later. After you have gone through all the questions, a list of every answered question will be displayed. The selected options will be displayed as letters. There will an asterisk next to the questions that were marked for later. 

3. Cost and duration of the Certification exam

The cost of the associate-level certification is $150 while the professional-level certification costs $300. The duration also varies for both the exam. For the associate-level, the duration is 130 minutes while that for the professional-level is 170 minutes.

4. Environment for the test

You can use Pearson VUE or the PSI network for taking the AWS exam. For admission, you will have to show two personal identifications at the exam center. The primary identification includes a valid driver’s license issued by the government and passport. For secondary identification, you can either use a second primary ID form or your debit card.  There are no personal items, food, and drinks allowed in the test area. Also, people wearing watches, eyewear, or GPS tracking device will be inspected. You can request paper, pencil, marker, or whiteboard.

AWS Certified Solutions Architect Exam Retake Policy

Getting AWS certified will help bring tremendous job growth and multiple job opportunities. One of the most common questions people ask is what to do if you fail the certification exam. There can be many reasons behind this like inadequate preparation or it might not have been just your day. One thing to remember is that you shouldn’t be afraid of failure. Worrying about whether you can pass the certification exam or not will only hinder your preparation. There are a lot of people who have failed the AWS certification exam. After all, they are difficult exams which can separate masters in AWS from the others. You need to remember that plenty of people pass the certification exam too. Having stress of the exam is common. The important thing is to remember how to manage that stress. Every now and then, you need to take a break and maintain the work-life balance. When there are just a few days left for the exam, you will start to doubt yourself and feel underprepared. Take a deep breath and remember that you have worked hard and prepared well for the exam.

After you have taken the exam, you will be immediately shown your results on the screen. However, there is no single passing score. Instead, AWS has a statistical method to determine if you passed or failed. The passing scores change every exam. If you win the exam, you will receive an AWS Certified logo, digital badge, and an e-certificate within 72 hours. However, if even after all the preparation you still fail, don’t feel disappointed. It is a tough exam and not everyone clears in first attempt. You will be eligible to retake the exam after 14 days. There is no exam limit. You can retake the exam as many times as you want. However, for every attempt, you will have to pay the complete registration price. For beta exam test takers, only one attempt is available.

After AWS Solutions Architect Certification

After you have passed the exam, within 72 hours, you will get an AWS Certified logo, a digital badge and an e-certificate in your AWS account. You can use the digital badges to display your status on Facebook, LinkedIn or any other social media website. Within 5 days of finishing the exam, you will receive a transcript of your results.

The IT landscape is shifting more and more towards cloud computing. This has led to an increase in prominence of the AWS. And with this certification, you will be ready for the change as the following skills will be validated by a renowned brand:

  • Architecting and deploying robust and secure applications using the AWS
  • Using the principles of architectural design for defining a solution that fulfills all the requirements of the customer.
  • Using the best practices for implementation.

After you get your certificate, you should start working on projects. If you have old projects hosted on a web server, you can migrate them on to the AWS platform.

All the figures mentioned above are accurate as of August 2019 and are sourced from online job portals such as Indeed.com, Salary.com, Glassdoor.com, etc.

Joydip

Joydip Kumar

Solution Architect

Joydip is passionate about building cloud-based applications and has been providing solutions to various multinational clients. Being a java programmer and an AWS certified cloud architect, he loves to design, develop, and integrate solutions. Amidst his busy work schedule, Joydip loves to spend time on writing blogs and contributing to the opensource community.


Website : https://geeks18.com/

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Top Cloud Certifications

What is Cloud Computing?Cloud is the new buzzword these days, and the term Cloud Computing is everywhere. Everyone, everywhere, is moving their storage to the cloud, and reaping its immense benefits. With the advent of Cloud storage, there's also been a rise in job opportunities in the field. Cloud Computing jobs relate to professionals in Cloud Data Management systems, who have the expertise to deal with cloud servers and the problems that may arise both on the user level and the server levels.Why Cloud Computing?Due to the rise of Cloud services, like iCloud and Dropbox, to name a few, there's also a rise in the number of professionals needed for the job. Cloud Professionals and engineers are paid handsome amounts for their work - as much as $117892 (Source) per year or even more, depending on the level of experience or expertise. It is a growing field, so jobs are unlikely to diminish over the next few years, in fact quite the opposite. So, it is not too late to gain experience and get started in the world as a Cloud Computing professional.The Need for Certification and Prospective OpportunitiesAs we have mentioned before, the value and salary of a Cloud Professional depends on their experience. One of the ways to show expertise is through certifications. They provide you with appropriate knowledge to deal with the job and provide valuable proof of expertise in the market if they're obtained from reputed sources. A certification is sure to kickstart fruitful career in Cloud Computing. Keeping that in mind, we have compiled a set of the most reputed certifications in the field of Cloud.  Top Cloud Certificationsndustry-recognised certifications give you an edge over your non-certified peers, increasing your employability and helping you get ahead in your cloud career. Fresh, certifiable skills are guaranteed to open new career opportunities and increase your salary as well! Listed below are the top cloud certifications that you can consider: Google Certified Professional Data Architect  Amazon Web Services (AWS) Certified Solutions Architect- Associate  MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure (Microsoft)  Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP)  CompTIA Cloud +  VMware VCP7-CMA  CCNP Cloud (Cisco) 1. Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect Google Certified Professional Data Architect has the honour of topping the lists of the hugest paying IT certifications in the United States of America. Google is a borderline ubiquitous brand. Most people used a few Google products to reach this article in the first place, so here is the same reputed company offering a certification that validates proficiency on the Google Cloud Platform. It includes the fields of Cloud architecture design, development, and management on different scales and an incredibly high degree of security and standards.  Prerequisites: There are no official pre-requisites, but Google recommends more than three years of experience in the industry, including more than a year's worth of designing and management experience using the Google Cloud Platform.  Exam Cost & Duration: The exam costs $200 each, (Source), and a test Center can be found on the Google Cloud website. The exam duration is 2 hours long and can be taken in either English or Japanese.  Exam Guide: Google Cloud offers an exam guide with a dedicated list of topics and many case studies that can help with studying for the exam. They also offer a training path comprising of texts and videos, which are easy to engage with as well.  Salary: The average Pay for a Google Cloud Architect can be around $103K (Source)  2. Amazon Web Services (AWS) Certified Solutions Architect- Associate Amazon Web Services is one of the top cloud computing companies in recent times. They have achieved an impressive 43% growth over the last year. They are followed by Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud with a close lead. Amazon Web Services offer certifications at the foundation, associate, and professional levels. This prepares a candidate for developing and architecture roles and offers operational knowledge. The associate certification can be a steppingstone to a potential professional level certification which comes with veteran level jobs and authorizes years' worth of experience in the field of Cloud Computing architecture, and design.  Prerequisites: Amazon prefers hands-on experience in the fields of networking, database, computational, and storage AWS services with the ability to perfectly define requirements for an AWS application. They require critical thinking skills taking into view the AWS service format along with knowledge on building security services.  Exam Cost: It costs $150. A practice exam can be purchased for $20 USD. (Source).  The exam can be taken in English, Japanese, Korean, and Simplified Chinese languages. Exam Guide: Amazon offers a collection of hands-on training courses, videos, and much more to prepare for the exam. Self-evaluation methods include an exam guide and sample questions. 65 MCQ format questions.  Salary: The average Pay an AWS solution Architect can expect is around $121K (Source)  3. MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure (Microsoft)Microsoft is, again, one of the brands which have made a mark on the technology industry today. The MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure Course certifies a person's ability to effectively manage cloud data, shows their skill in managing virtual networks, storage management systems, and many more cloud technologies,  Prerequisites: One does not just take the MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solution Associate): Azure certification. They must also score a passing grade on an exam called the MSCE, which covers development, and Azure-based and related architecture solutions along with hybrid cloud operations and bits of big data analytics. An MCSE along with two or three pre-requisite exams need to be taken.   Exam Cost: The MCSE exam costs $165, (Source) while the pre-requisite exams cost $165 and $300 (MCSA and LFCS, respectively) Exam Guide/Courses: Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) offers free courses and reference matter relevant to Cloud professionals and cloud development. A program called Exam Reply is available that allows candidates to buy a slightly discounted exam, a practice attempt (which needs a slight upcharge), and a retake attempt as well.    Salary: The job title that can be earned after this certification is Microsoft Cloud Solution Architect, and this role can earn around $154133 per year. (Source)  4. Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP)Offered by the (ISC)^2 (International Information System Security Certification Consortium, the CCSP is a globally recognized certification. It validates a candidate's ability to work within a cloud architecture along with good abilities in the field of design, secure applications, along data and infrastructure. These are carried out under the protocols offered by (ISC)^2, which are a hallmark of security. It's ideal for those who want an enterprise architect role, and other roles include systems engineers, security administrator or a consultant in the field of security.  Prerequisites: The (ISC)^2 recommends around five years of experience in the field of IT, including three in Information security and one in any of the domains prescribed by CSSP Common Body of Knowledge.  Exam Cost: The exam is provided by Pearson VUE. The standard registration for the exam costs $600 (Source)  Exam Guide/Courses: The CCSP examination involves preparation in 6 different domains, as highlighted in the CCSP exam outline.  Salary: The job title earned is Cloud Security Professional, a job that can pay up to $138k per annum. (Source)  5. CompTIA Cloud+ An acronym for Computing Technology Industry Association, CompTIA is a non-profit. It serves the IT industry and is one of the global leaders in certifications like the ones you're looking for on the list. These are vendor-neutral, meaning you can apply to a broad range of jobs, and it means you're not restrained to any particular company. They cover certifications from novice to professional levels.  CompTIA Cloud+ acts as a foundation-level certification. Like its selling point, Cloud+ offers a piece of foundational knowledge in a broad domain in the Cloud market. It authorizes skills in the maintenance and optimization of cloud software. It shows that a candidate can demonstrate the ability to migrate data to cloud platforms, manage cloud resources and make appropriate modifications, perform automation tasks to improve performance, all the while focusing on security.  Prerequisites: It needs 2-3 years' worth of experience in system administration.  Exam Cost & Format: The exam includes 90 questions. Available in English and Japanese Costs $338 (Source), The certification expires in 3 years after launch Salary: As a cloud specialist an average pay that can be expected in the US market is around $80317 (Source). 6. VMware VCP7-CMA VMware is a company that is well known within the IT-sphere for its strong grasp of virtualization technologies. The VCP7- Cloud Management and Automation is the latest in a series of certifications the company has rolled out. The vRealise and the vSphere-based program are instrumental in certifying new as well as veteran IT professionals in the field of virtualization in the Cloud.  Prerequisites:  A prerequisite is to have a minimum of 6-month experience with the vSphere 6 and realized software.  One also needs to complete one of the training courses offered by VMware, which keeps updating on the current course list portion of the website.  Candidates can choose one out of 3 exams: vSphere 6 Foundations, vSphere 6.5 Foundations, or VMware Certified Professional Management and Automation exam.  Exam Cost: vSphere 6 and 6.5 cost $125, whereas the third exam costs $250 (Source). A VMWare candidate ID is needed to register.  Exam Guide: Exam Self-study material is available on the certification page.  Salary: As a VMWare Staff Engineer, the salary expected could be up to $188446 every year. (Source)  7. CCNP Cloud (Cisco)CCNP stands for Cisco Certified Network Professional. This is one of the more reputed certifications that allows a professional to validate their skills in the fields of data management, cloud architecture, and design and authorize their path as a cloud professional. Along with the Cloud, the CCNP is also available as a Collaboration, Service Provider, Data Centre, and many other fields in the collection of solutions. Be warned, though. Cisco focuses on the practical requirements as well, so their certification process is equally rigorous, with design, practical, architecture-based assessments to keep one on their toes. But in the end, this multidisciplinary approach proves itself. An understanding of Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) is also vital. They provide a lot of resources to prepare as well, with assignments, discussion forums, self-assessments, and much more!  Training in the fields of CLDING, CLDDES, CLDAUT, CLACI, CLDINF is highly recommended. These cover information on Cisco cloud infrastructure, automation, infrastructure, and troubleshooting.  Prerequisites: There are four exams that need to be taken in each of the above fields. They are administered by Pearson VUE.  Exam Cost: Each exam costs $300, $1200 total. (Source)  Exam Guide: For the study material, Cisco has curated many resources like Learning Network games, self-assessment modules, seminars, videos, and much more. Textbooks and other materials are also available on the Cisco Marketplace Bookstore.  Salary: The typical job that can be obtained is Cisco Systems Cloud Engineer that pays around $158010 per annum.(Source)  Certification LevelsThese cloud certifications can be segregated into Professional and Associate levels, where various criteria are required to be fulfilled to be eligible to apply for the respective certification. As per the market trends and the demand, here is a detailed description of some of the most coveted certifications: Amazon Web Services - AWS 1. AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Professional This certification is for professionals who have experienced hands-on solutions architect roles. A candidate must have 2 or more years of experience in operating and managing the AWS operations. The exam costs 300 USD and is 180 minutes long. This course validates the following abilities:  Implementation of cost control strategies  Designing fault proof applications on AWS  Choosing appropriate AWS services for design and application   Migrating the complex applications on AWS  Exam criteria 2 or more years of experience in handling cloud architecture on AWS  One should have diverse knowledge of AWS CLI, AWS APIs, AWS CloudFormation templates, the AWS Billing Console, and the AWS Management Console  Detailed knowledge of the scripting language  Must have worked on Windows and Linux  Must be able to explain the five pillars of the AWS architecture Framework  Practical knowledge of the architectural design across multiple projects of the company.  2. AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Associate  This course is for professionals who have one year of experience in handling and designing fault free and scalable distributed systems on AWS.  This certificate validates the following abilities:  In depth knowledge of deploying the secure and powerful applications on AWS  Knowledge and application of customized architectural principles  Exam criteria The course requires a complete understanding of the AWS global infrastructure, network technologies, security features and tools related to AWS  Knowledge of how to build secure and reliable AWS applications  Experience of deployment and management of management services.  The exam duration is 130-minutes and the fee is $150. The above were some of the main certified courses of AWS. The other two Associate level courses are AWS SysOps Administrator Associate and the AWS Developer Associate. 3. The AWS Certified DevOps Engineer – ProfessionalThis exam is for professionals who have experience as a DevOps engineer and have experience in provisioning, operating, and managing AWS environments.  This course validates the following abilities: Management and implementation of delivery systems and methodology on AWS  Deploying and managing the logging, metrics, and monitoring system on AWS  Implementation and management of highly scalable, and self-healing systems on AWS.  Automation of security controls, government processes and compliance validation  Exam criteria  Knowledge and experience in administering operating systems and building highly automated infrastructure.  Knowledge of developing code in at least one high level programming language.  The cost of the exam is 300 USD and the duration is 180 minutes. There will be 75 questions.  Microsoft Web Service – Azure:  1. Azure Developer Associate AZ-204This course will provide you with the skill set to design, build, test and maintain cloud solutions from the start to the end.  You will master the basics of developing an app and all the other services Azure provides. This certification course will help you learn the actual syntax and programming languages that are used to integrate the application on Azure.  Exam criteria You are required to take an Exam AZ-204: Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure ($165 USD) and must have at least 1-2 years’ of experience with development and azure development.  Having a good command in any of these languages like C#, PHP, Java, Python, or JavaScript would be a plus.  Getting certified with this course will set you ahead of your peers in the development sector.  2. Azure Data Scientist Associate DP-100Turning data and facts related to a business into useful and actionable insights is an art, and getting the Azure data scientist certification will prove that you have the required expertise in data and machine learning.  This course is for professionals who are currently working as a data scientist or are planning to become one soon. Exam: DP-100: Designing and Implementing a Data Science Solution on Azure ($165 USD)  Exam criteria You should have knowledge and experience in data science and in using Azure Machine Learning and Azure Databricks. This certification course can future-proof your career, as there is spectacular growth in internet use and the demand for job roles in this sector will continue to increase year on year.   Wondering where to start? Here are some pointers:Are you a Newbie?If you are a lost soul in the world of technology but want to learn, then the perfect way to start is the Azure Fundamentals Course. Any beginner can grasp the fundamentals and get started.Are you in the middle of the road?If you are someone who has average experience and has worked with hands-on AWS, GCP, or Azure then too we would recommend you start with the Fundamental course. Refresh your knowledge and make your basics stronger before you move on to the Administrator Associate certification, which can be very intimidating otherwise. Are you an Expert?  If you have had enough experience with cloud computing or have got serious geek vibes in you, then you can take up any speciality or professional certifications to add the missing edge to your expertise.  If you still need more clarity, you can explore our cloud certification category page for more details. Need more handholding? Contact our experts by using the Contact Learning Advisor button and fill up a small form. Let’s connect! Why be a Cloud Computing Professional? 1. A Growing Field As more and more of our lives are uploaded on the Cloud, the demand for professionals with the capabilities to handle cloud architecture is increasing by the day. Professionals with the right expertise are paid handsome salaries, and the investments made in certification repay themselves many times over. The demands for Cloud professionals outstrip the supply by a huge margin, making this an easy job for entry-level applicants.   2. A Good PayThe salary for a Cloud Engineer ranges from $117,892 to $229,000 (Source). This is a rewarding field, indeed! You can get onto the entry point of the ladder and work your way up, which is an easy journey if you earn a certification. It is one of the highest paying jobs that can be found in the IT sector.   Companies Hiring Certified Cloud Computing Professionals Some of the companies whose certifications we addressed above are also among the key employers in the Cloud Computing market. The key employers for these jobs are listed below.    Amazon They are the undoubted leaders in the fields of Cloud Computing and management. They are branching out in the fields of AI, the Internet of things, machine learning, and database management as well, and you can explore exciting new opportunities in any of these fields. As documented above, AWS has faced over 43% growth year after year for a sustained period. They are undoubtedly one of the largest hirers in the field as they need competent workforce for their expanding ventures.  Microsoft After the enormous success of the Office 365 platform, Cloud Computing was the next step forward for Microsoft, with the Azure platform. They are neck to neck with Amazon for the number 1 spot in the field of Cloud architecture and database management.   IBM The waning brand of IBM has now made a sudden resurgence to capitalize on the demand in the fields of AI, the Information Age, and the new Cloud phenomenon. They have recently acquired Red Hat and have entered the field of hybrid cloud development. They will surely be looking for professionals in the field to boost their chances. Dell Technologies (VMware) VMware, mentioned on the above lists, has partnered with Dell Technologies to form a robust cloud platform. A veteran player in the industry already, VMware has constantly evolved to adapt to advancements in the industry. They have partnerships with all the huge players like AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud as well.  ConclusionIt is quite evident that Cloud computing is one of the most exciting and lucrative fields one can be in, considering the investment to return ratio. These certifications offer incredibly excellent value for money and will lead to placements in leading companies, which is not easy via other paths.  There is a lot to learn in the field of Cloud Computing, and it is a highly adaptive job as well; that is why one needs to keep an eye on the newest software and architecture in the market. These certifications make sure that you can validate your experience and increase your employability. While there are many certifications available, only the ones from reputed institutions help to get a job. They show that you have the knowledge and expertise to make your mark in the industry.  It is never too late to start your learning journey, so grab that certification exam guide and start learning. Happy computing!  
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Top Cloud Certifications

What is Cloud Computing?Cloud is the new buzzword ... Read More

A Glimpse Of The Major Leading SAFe® Versions

A Quick view of SAFe® Agile has gained popularity in recent years, and with good reason. Teams love this approach that allows them to get a value to the customer faster while learning and adjusting to change as needed. But teams often don’t work in isolation. Many teams work in the context of larger organizations.  Often Agile doesn’t fit their needs. Some teams need an Agile approach that scales to larger projects that involve multiple teams.   It’s possible to do this. That’s where the Scaled Agile Framework, or SAFe®, can help.Why SAFe® is the best scalable framework?The Scaled Agile Framework is a structured Agile approach for large enterprises. It’s prescriptive and provides a path for interdependent teams to gain the benefits of using an Agile approach.Scaled Agile provides guidance not only at the team level but also at the Program and Portfolio levels. It also has built-in coordinated planning across related teams who are working in Release Trains.These planning increments allow teams to plan together to work with customers and release value frequently in a way that’s sustainable to teams.And it supports continuous improvement.It’s a great way for large companies to maintain structure and roll out Agile at a large scale.  What is SAFe® 4.5? Scaled Agile, otherwise known as SAFe®, was initially released in 2011 by Dean Leffingwell as a knowledge base for enterprises to adopt Agile. Over the years it has grown and evolved. SAFe® 4.5 was released on June 22, 2017, to accommodate improvements to the framework. Following are some of the key improvements in SAFe® 4.5:Essential SAFe® and ConfigurabilityInnovation with Lean Startup and Lean UXScalable DevOps and Continuous DeliveryImplementation roadmapBenefits of SAFe® 4.5 to companies:Organizations who adopt SAFe® 4.5 will be able to gain the following benefits:1) Test ideas more quickly. SAFe® 4.5 has a build-in iterative development and testing. This lets teams get faster feedback to learn and adjust more quickly.2) Deliver much faster. The changes to SAFe® 4.5 allow teams to move complex work through the pipeline and deliver value to the customer faster.3) Simplify governance and improve portfolio performance. Guidance and support have been added at the Portfolio level to guide organizations in addressing Portfolio-level concerns in a scaled agile context. SAFe® 4.5 - Key areas of improvements:A. Essential SAFe® and ConfigurabilityFour configurations of SAFe® that provide a more configurable and scalable approach:Essential SAFe®: The most basic level that teams can use. It contains just the essentials that a team needs to get the benefits of SAFe®.Portfolio SAFe®: For enterprises that implement multiple solutions that have portfolio responsibilities such as governance, strategy, and portfolio funding.Large Solution: Complex solutions that involve multiple Agile Release Trains. These initiatives don’t require Portfolio concerns, but only include the Large Solution and Essential SAFe® elements.  SAFe® Full SAFe®: The most comprehensive level that can be applied to huge enterprise initiatives requiring hundreds of people to complete.Because SAFe® is a framework, that provides the flexibility to choose the level of SAFe® that best fits your organization’s needs.B. Innovation with Lean Startup and Lean UXRather than creating an entire project plan up-front, SAFe® teams focus on features. They create a hypothesis about what a new feature will deliver and then use an iterative approach to develop and test their hypothesis along the way. As teams move forward through development, they perform this development and test approach repeatedly and adjust as needed, based on feedback. Teams also work closely with end users to identify the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) to focus on first. They identify what will be most valuable to the customer most immediately. Then they rely on feedback and learning as they develop the solution incrementally. They adjust as needed to incorporate what they’ve learned into the features. This collaboration and fast feedback and adjustment cycle result in a more successful product.  C. Scalable DevOps & Continuous DeliveryThe addition of a greater focus on DevOps allows teams to innovate faster. Like Agile, DevOps is a mindset. And like Agile, it allows teams to learn, adjust, and deliver value to users incrementally. The continuous delivery pipeline allows teams to move value through the pipeline faster through continuous exploration, continuous integration, continuous deployment, and released on demand. DevOps breaks down silos and supports Agile teams to work together more seamlessly. This results in more efficient delivery of value to the end users faster. It’s a perfect complement to Scaled Agile.D. Implementation RoadmapSAFe® now offers a suggested roadmap to SAFe® adoption. While change can be challenging, the implementation roadmap provides guidance that can help with that organizational change.Critical Role of the SAFe® Program ConsultantSAFe® Program Consultants, or SPCs, are critical change agents in the transition to Scaled Agile.Because of the depth of knowledge required to gain SPC certification, they’re perfectly positioned to help the organization move through challenges of change.They can train and coach all levels of SAFe® participants, from team members to executive leaders. They can also train the Scrum Master, Product Owners, and Agile Release Train Engineers, which are critical roles in SAFe®.The SPC can also train teams and help them launch their Agile Release Trains (ARTs).And they can support teams on the path to continued improvement as they continue to learn and grow.The SPC can also help identify value streams in the organization that may be ready to launch Agile Release Trains.The can also help develop rollout plans for SAFe® in the enterprise.Along with this, they can provide important communications that help the enterprise understand the drivers and value behind the SAFe® transition.       How SAFe® 4.5 is backward compatible with SAFe® 4.0?Even if your organization has already adopted SAFe® 4.0, SAFe® 4.5 has been developed in a way that can be easily adopted without disruption. Your organization can adopt the changes at the pace that works best.Few Updates in the new courseware The courseware for SAFe® 4.5 has incorporated changes to support the changes in SAFe® 4.5.They include Implementing SAFe®, Leading SAFe®, and SAFe® for Teams.Some of the changes you’ll see are as follows:Two new lessons for Leading SAFe®Student workbookTrainer GuideNew look and feelUpdated LPM contentSmoother lesson flowNEW Course Delivery Enablement (CDE) Changes were made to improve alignment between SAFe® and Scrum:Iteration Review: Increments previously known as Sprints now have reviews added. This allows more opportunities for teams to incorporate improvements. Additionally, a Team Demo has been added in each iteration review. This provides more opportunity for transparency, sharing, and feedback.Development Team: The Development team was specifically identified at the team level in SAFe® 4.5. The development team is made up of three to nine people who can move an element of work from development through the test. This development team contains software developers, testers, and engineers, and does not include the Product Owner and Scrum Master. Each of those roles is shown separately at the team level in SAFe® 4.5.Scrum events: The list of scrum events are shown next to the ScrumXP icon and include Plan, Execute, Review, and Retro (for a retrospective.)Combined SAFe® Foundation Elements SAFe® 4.0 had the foundational elements of Core Values, Lean-Agile Mindset, SAFe® Principles, and Implementing SAFe® at a basic level.SAFe® 4.5 adds to the foundation elements by also including Lean-Agile Leaders, the Implementation Roadmap, and the support of the SPC in the successful implementation of SAFe®.Additional changes include: Communities of Practice: This was moved to the spanning palette to show support at all levels: team, program, large solution, and portfolio.Lean-Agile Leaders: This role is now included in the foundational level. Supportive leadership is critical to a successful SAFe® adoption.SAFe® Program Consultant: This role was added to the Foundational Layer. The SPC can play a key leadership role in a successful transition to Scaled Agile.Implementation Roadmap: The implementation roadmap replaces the basic implementation information in SAFe® 4.0. It provides more in-depth information on the elements to a successful enterprise transition to SAFe®.Benefits of upgrading to SAFe® 4.5With the addition of Lean Startup approaches, along with a deeper focus on DevOps and Continuous Delivery, teams will be situated to deliver quality and value to users more quickly.With improvements at the Portfolio level, teams get more guidance on Portfolio governance and other portfolio levels concerns, such as budgeting and compliance.  Reasons to Upgrade to SAFe® 4.5 Enterprises who’ve been using SAFe® 4.0 will find greater flexibility with the added levels in SAFe® 4.5. Smaller groups in the enterprise can use the team level, while groups working on more complex initiatives can create Agile Release Trains with many teams.Your teams can innovate faster by using the Lean Startup Approach. Work with end users to identify the Minimum Viable Product (MVP), then iterate as you get fast feedback and adjust. This also makes your customer more of a partner in development, resulting in better collaboration and a better end product.Get features and value to your user community faster with DevOps and the Continuous Delivery pipeline. Your teams can continuously hypothesize, build, measure, and learn to continuously release value. This also allows large organizations to innovate more quickly.Most Recent Changes in SAFe® series - SAFe® 4.6Because Scaled Agile continues to improve, new changes have been incorporated with SAFe® 4.6. with the addition of five core competencies that enable enterprises to respond to technology and market changes.Lean Portfolio Management: The information needed for how to use a Lean-Agile approach to portfolio strategy, funding, and governance.Business Solutions and Lean Systems: Optimizing activities to Implement large, complex initiatives using a Scaled Agile approach while still addressing the necessary activities such as designing, testing, deployment, and even retiring old solutions.DevOps and Release on Demand: The skills needed to release value as needed through a continuous delivery pipeline.Team and Technical Agility: The skills needed to establish successful teams who consistently deliver value and quality to meet customer needs.Lean-Agile Leadership: How leadership enables a successful agile transformation by supporting empowered teams in implementing agile practices. Leaders carry out the Agile principles and practices and ensure teams have the support they need to succeedSAFe® Agilist (SA) Certification exam: The SAFe® Agilist certification is for the change leaders in an organization to learn about the SAFe® practices to support change at all levels: team, program, and portfolio levels. These change agents can play a positive role in an enterprise transition to SAFe®.In order to become certified as a SAFe® Agilist (SA), you must first take the Leading SAFe® class and pass the SAFe® certification exam. To learn more about this, see this article on How To Pass Leading SAFe® 4.5 Exam.SAFe® Certification Exam: KnowledgeHut provides Leading SAFe® training in multiple locations. Check the site for locations and dates.SAFe® Agile Certification Cost: Check KnowledgeHut’s scheduled training offerings to see the course cost. Each course includes the opportunity to sit for the exam included in the cost.Scaled Agile Framework Certification Cost: There are multiple levels of SAFe® certification, including Scrum Master, Release Train Engineer, and Product Owner. Courses range in cost, but each includes the chance to sit for the corresponding SAFe® certification.SAFe® Classes: SAFe® classes are offered by various organizations. To see if KnowledgeHut is offering SAFe® Training near you, check the SAFe® training schedule on our website.TrainingKnowledgeHut provides multiple Scaled Agile courses to give both leaders and team members in your organization the information they need to for a successful transition to Scaled Agile. Check the site for the list of classes to find those that are right for your organization as you make the journey.All course fees cover examination costs for certification.SAFe® 4.5 Scrum Master with SSM Certification TrainingLearn the core competencies of implementing Agile across the enterprise, along with how to lead high-performing teams to deliver successful solutions. You’ll also learn how to implement DevOps practices. Completion of this course will prepare you for obtaining your SAFe® 4 Scrum Master certificate.SAFe® 4 Advanced Scrum Master (SASM)This two-day course teaches you to how to apply Scrum at the enterprise level and prepares you to lead high-performing teams in a Scaled Agile environment. At course completion, you’ll be prepared to manage interactions not only on your team but also across teams and with stakeholders. You’ll also be prepared to take the SAFe® Advanced Scrum Master exam.Leading SAFe®4.5 Training Course (SA)This two-day Leading SAFe® class prepares you to become a Certified SAFe® 4 Agilist, ready to lead the agile transformation in your enterprise.  By the end of this course, you’ll be able to take the SAFe® Agilist (SA) certification exam.SAFe® 4.5 for Teams (SP) This two-day course teaches Scrum fundamentals, principles tools, and processes. You’ll learn about software engineering practices needed to scale agile and deliver quality solutions in a Scaled Agile environment. Teams new to Scaled Agile will find value in going through this course. Attending the class prepares you for the certification exam to become a certified SAFe® 4 Practitioner (SP). DevOps Foundation Certification trainingThis course teaches you the DevOps framework, along with the practices to prepare you to apply the principles in your work environment. Completion of this course will prepare you also to take the DevOps Foundation exam for certification.
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A Glimpse Of The Major Leading SAFe® Versions

A Quick view of SAFe® Agile has gained popularit... Read More

How Start Ups Can Benefit From Cloud Computing?

From nebulous beginnings, the cloud has grown to a platform that has gained universal acceptance and is transforming businesses across industries. Companies that have adopted cloud technology have seen significant payoffs, with cloud based tools redefining their data storage, data sharing, marketing and project management capabilities. The easy availability of affordable cloud infrastructure has made it so easy to set up new businesses that the economy is all set for a start up boom which has its head, so to speak, in the cloud! With the advent of this new technology, complete newbie’s in the market are able to hold their own against established market players—by achieving an amazing quantum of work using skeleton manpower resources. Recently, a popular ad doing the rounds on TV showed a long haired youth conducting business from a cafe on his HP Pavilion laptop, where he is ridiculed by some well heeled middle aged businessmen on their coffee break. Back at their office, they find that this youngster is the new investor that their boss has been heaping accolades on. “Where’s your office?” one of them asks the young man…to be laughingly told that he carries his entire office in his laptop! And that, typically, is how the new-age start up business looks. We have heard many stories of how a clever idea has turned a tidy profit for a smart entrepreneur working out of his laptop. While cloud computing is pushing the boundaries of science and innovation into a new realm, it is also laying the foundation for a new wave of business start ups. New ventures in general suffer from a lack of infrastructure, manpower and funding…and all these three concerns are categorically addressed by the cloud. Moving to the cloud minimizes the need of huge capital investments to set up expensive infrastructure. For nascent entrepreneurs, physical hardware and server costs used to be formidable given the limited budgets at their disposal. Seed money was also required to hire office space, promote the business and hire workers. Today, thanks to cloud technology, getting a new business off the ground and running costs virtually nothing. Most of the resources and tools that new ventures need are available on the cloud at minimal costs, in fact quite often at zero costs, making this a powerful value proposition for small businesses. A cloud hosting provider such as AWS can enable you to go live immediately, and will even scale up to your requirement once your business expands. Small businesses can think and dream big with the cloud. When it comes to manpower resources, it takes just a handful of people to work wonders using the online resources that are at their disposal. If you have a brilliant idea and have a workable plan for execution, you can comfortably compete neck to neck with market leaders. The messaging sensation WhatsApp was started in 2009 by just two former Yahoo employees who leveraged the power of the internet – and this goes to show that clever use of technology can completely eliminate the need for a sizeable manpower pool. Start ups have always been more agile than their large scale counterparts, and the cloud helps them take this a step further. Resources can be scaled up or down in no time, whereas in traditional environments it would have taken many days, considerable planning and funds to add hardware and software. Cloud computing also helps improve collaboration across teams, often across geographies. Data sharing is instantaneous, and teams can work on a task together in real time regardless of their location. Powered by the cloud, small businesses operate with shoestring budgets and key players in different continents. All their accounting, client data, marketing and other business critical files can be stored online and are accessible from anywhere. These online tools can be accessed and utilised instantly, and underpin all the crucial processes on which these businesses thrive. Strategic financial decisions are made after garnering insights from cloud-based accounting software. E-invoicing helps settle bills in a fraction of the time of traditional billing systems, and client queries are answered quickly through cloud-based management systems—saving precious time and increasing customer satisfaction levels to an all-time high. Whether at home, on vacation or on the phone, businesses can oversee sales, replenish products and plan new sales strategies. That’s a whole new way of doing business, and seems to be very successful! An estimate by Cloudworks has put the anticipated cloud computing market at over $200 billion by the year 2018. As Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn, succinctly put it, the cloud “makes it easier and cheaper than ever for anyone anywhere to be an entrepreneur and to have access to all the best infrastructure of innovation.” With cloud technology rapidly levelling the playing field between nascent and established businesses, it is anybody’s guess as to just how many new start ups will burst into the scene in the next few years. Hoping that the blog has helped you gain a clear understanding of the importance of Cloud Computing.  To gain more knowledge on what cloud computing has to offer, take a look at other blogs as well as the AWS certifications that we have to offer or enrol yourself for the AWS Certification Training course by KnowledgeHut.  
How Start Ups Can Benefit From Cloud Computing?

From nebulous beginnings, the cloud has grown to a... Read More