Cloud computing and migrating enterprise operations to the cloud continue to be a high priority for technology leaders everywhere. However, investing in new technology must be met with equal investment in the people responsible for the development, implementation, and maintenance of these organizational initiatives in order to create the best chances for success.
For practitioners exploring career-advancement opportunities, there are several pathways one can take their career in cloud. Here’s a list of some of the highest-paying cloud-related jobs according to TechTarget:
- Cloud Architect – $138,212 avg. salary
- Cloud Data Scientist – $134,580
- Cloud Consultant – $131,678
- Cloud Engineer – $130,086
- Software Engineer – $117,215
- Cloud Security Analyst – $91,959
- Cloud Administrator – $72,809
For employers looking to invest in employees’ professional development and enhance their skills to streamline current or upcoming cloud-related organizational goals, providing training for top cloud computing and cloud security certifications is a great place to start. In this article, learn more about the most in-demand vendor-specific and vendor-neutral cloud certifications.
Click to jump to a specific vendor:
- Amazon Web Services
- Google Cloud
- NEW – Vendor-Agnostic Foundational Cloud Security Training
Amazon Web Services
Possessing an AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner credential demonstrates a practitioner’s overall understanding of the AWS cloud, outside of the specific roles covered by other AWS certifications.
Prerequisites: Amazon recommends having at least six months of experience with AWS Cloud and a basic understanding of IT services as it applies to the AWS Cloud platform.
The AWS Certified Developer – Associate certification validates a candidate’s ability to write and deploy cloud-based applications.
Prerequisites: It is recommended that practitioners have one or more years of hands-on experience developing and maintaining an AWS-based application. Amazon recommends that candidates have in-depth knowledge of at least one high-level programming language, an understanding of core AWS services, proficiency in developing, deploying, and debugging cloud-based applications using AWS, the ability to apply a basic understanding of cloud-native applications to write code, and author and debug code in AWS.
Earning the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate indicates an individual understands how to design and implement distributed systems on AWS.
Prerequisites: In order to qualify for this certification, participants must have one or more years of hands-on experience designing available, cost-efficient, fault-tolerant, and scalable distributed systems on AWS.
To learn more about Amazon Web Services certifications, click here.
The CompTIA Cloud+ certification is an ideal vendor-neutral credential for entry-level professionals or those working with multiple cloud platforms. Cloud+ is for practitioners looking to master the multi-vendor skills and abilities required for roles within data centers.
Prerequisites: It is recommended that candidates have around 2-3 years of professional experience with system administration.
To learn more about CompTIA Cloud+, click here.
The Google Cloud Platform (GCP) Fundamentals program is designed for data professionals responsible for provisioning and optimizing big data solutions. Individuals who pursue this certification will learn about the benefits of GCP, how to navigate GCP, and how to choose between GCP data processing products.
Prerequisites: This is a beginner-level credential, therefore there are no prerequisites to attain this certification.
This certification is ideal for practitioners who have experience with cloud-native applications, developer tools, managed services, and next-generation databases. They also have proficiency with at least one general-purpose programming language and are skilled at producing meaningful metrics and logs to debug and trace code.
Prerequisites: There are no prerequisites to pursuing this certification. However, Google recommends 3+ years of industry experience including 1+ years designing and managing solutions using Google Cloud.
To learn more about Google Cloud certifications, click here.
The Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP) certification is the most advanced credential on the list, which demonstrates an individual has a deep understanding plus hands-on experience with cloud security architecture, design, operations, and service orchestration.
Prerequisites: (ISC)² requires candidates to have a minimum of five years of cumulative, paid, full-time work experience in information technology. Three of these years must be in information security and one year in one or more of the six CCSP Common Body of Knowledge domains.
To learn more about the CCSP certification, click here.
Candidates for the Microsoft Azure Administrator credential are Azure Administrators who manage cloud services that span storage, security, networking, and compute cloud capabilities.
Prerequisites: According to Microsoft, candidates must have at least six months of hands-on experience administering Azure, along with a strong understanding of core Azure services, Azure workloads, security, and governance. In addition, candidates should have experience using PowerShell, Azure CLI, Azure portal, and Azure Resource Manager templates.
The AZ-900 certification is a beginner-level credential that validates a practitioner’s foundational level knowledge of cloud services and how those services are provided with Microsoft Azure.
Prerequisites: AZ-900 is intended for candidates who are beginning their careers in cloud or are new to Azure and want to validate their foundational level of knowledge around cloud services. This is an ideal credential for professionals with non-technical backgrounds as well, such as those involved in selling and purchasing, or who use cloud-based solutions and services in some capacity. Technical IT experience is not required, however, some general IT knowledge or experience would be beneficial.
The Microsoft 365 Fundamentals certification is an ideal beginner certification for entry-level professionals looking to establish foundational knowledge around the benefits of adopting cloud services and understanding cloud concepts.
Prerequisites: According to Microsoft, it is suggested that candidates have a fundamental knowledge of offerings, optimizing licensing for cost-effectiveness, and support options for organizations.
Bonus Certification: Microsoft Azure Security Technologies (AZ-500)
The AZ-500 credential demonstrates a cloud professional’s expertise in implementing Azure security controls that secure identity, access, data, applications, and networks in cloud and hybrid environments as part of an end-to-end infrastructure.
Prerequisites: Candidates are required to have practical experience in administration of Azure and hybrid environments, in addition to infrastructure as code, security operations processes, cloud capabilities, and Azure services.
To learn more about Microsoft certifications, click here.
Master the Fundamentals of Cloud Security
According to (ISC)2’s 2022 Cybersecurity Workforce Survey, the top skill for professionals is cloud security. With more organizations currently planning or undergoing cloud migration, ensuring employees understand the how and why behind securely configuring cloud infrastructure is critical.
Those who may be new to the field or are interested in gaining a foundational understanding of cloud security may benefit from vendor-agnostic training. N2K now offers a Cloud Security Essentials on-demand course that focuses on building the baseline knowledge and skills needed for secure cloud development and implementation.