What is the Best AWS Certification for You? cover image

Let’s get one thing straight: there is no one-size-fits-all, no cream of the crop, or, in other words, no absolute best AWS certification. If there was, what was the point for Amazon to offer eleven more options? Nevertheless, there is an optimal choice for everyone, depending on their priorities and career objectives. How do you find it when each item on the AWS certifications list seems enticing and promising? Let’s dissect the idea of the best AWS certification into multiple aspects and see which one fits your expectations best.

The Easiest AWS Certification

It’s not a secret that a chance to get certified without investing too much time and effort seems attractive to a lot of people. And who are we to judge? We’re living in the times of constant running and working more hours than ever – it seems like no one has a free moment anymore, so it’s understandable people want to use their time as efficiently as possible. In this case, the best AWS certification is the one that takes up less time – plus, the quicker you get certified, the quicker you can start reaping the benefits!

If you review the whole AWS certifications list, you will notice there are four types of exams you can take: Foundational, Associate, Professional, and Specialty. While the last three types offer a small selection of certifications each, there is only one foundational-level certification – the AWS Cloud Practitioner. If you’re looking for the easiest AWS certification, that’s the way to go: this type of certification requires the least practice and covers the basics of the AWS Cloud infrastructure, including its key services and the main concepts of cloud computing.

However, opting for the easiest AWS certification also means minimal gains – which is to be expected with a Foundational-level. As a Cloud Practitioner, you will feel completely comfortable and in control using AWS in your daily work, but you’ll lack the knowledge required to build and implement your own solutions into the cloud. If understanding and being able to use the cloud is your main goal, on the other hand, take a look at online AWS training courses provided by BitDegree Academy: paired with hands-on exercises and expert support features, their original and informative content will surely make your learning journey as smooth as it can get.

The Most Universal AWS Certification

When it comes to the practicalities of getting certified, there is a little paradox: the AWS certification that is relevant to the most roles in the industry is also the least beneficial in terms of advancing your career.

Becoming an AWS Cloud Practitioner guarantees you have appropriate knowledge of the cloud infrastructure that can be used in a variety of different positions, including but not limited to finances, sales, and management. On the other hand, while it does add a massive advantage to your professional resume, the certification alone will not be enough to land any of these jobs. It might help you get a raise or a position with a better-paying employer, sure, but it won’t compensate for the lack of knowledge you might have in other areas.

A lot of people in the industry tend to think the best AWS certification is the one that allows a person to dive into an exact role of a smaller scope instead of casting the hugest of nets and striving for universality. The concept of a Renaissance man who has impressive knowledge in a variety of subjects might seem enticing – however, it’s virtually impossible to achieve and attain. Having wider industry knowledge is always great, but you can’t be a professional at everything!

To come to a personal decision on which certification is best in AWS, think about your educational background and your work experience up to this point – for example, if you are familiar with coding already and know a few programming languages, it might be smart to become an AWS Certified Developer (Associate). Also, identify your personal interests and goals. If you find an option that both matches your current industry knowledge and spikes your professional curiosity, look no more – this is the best AWS certification for you.

The Most Lucrative AWS Certification

Money makes the world go round – and it’s only natural we take it into consideration as we make our career choices. Experience and knowledge take years to gain, and that should be adequately compensated. A chance of significantly higher pay is one of the reasons people start glancing at the AWS certification list in the first place, too – and for a good reason.

According to Global Knowledge, AWS certifications are currently the most valuable tech certifications in North America – at least in terms of salaries. No surprise there: not only has AWS been an absolute leader in the market of cloud computing services for multiple years now, but its market share keeps growing still. It’s far from a temporary fad, and it’s not a niche system, either: there are over a million companies using AWS worldwide, and Amazon states at least 10% of them are enterprise-scale. Curious to hear some familiar names? NASA, BMW, Netflix, Samsung, Yelp… We could keep going – but let’s save a few hours and get back to our search for the best AWS certification for you.

In 2019, an average AWS-certified IT professional earned almost $130,000 – 2,6 times more than the current median wage for workers in the United States. What stands out particularly is the AWS Certified Solutions Architect certifications: they are the best-paying ones in both Associate and Professional levels. If you are looking to ensure the best possible chance to earn a lot of yourself, this might be the best AWS certification path for you to follow.

So, which certification is best in AWS?

Just like we stated in the beginning, there is no right answer to this question that would suit each and every person equally: you need to identify where you are in your career currently, and where exactly you want to go from here.

Whichever certification you decide to go with, it will surely motivate you to improve the skills you already have and gain ones – moreover, it will definitely be a substantial plus to your professional credibility and make future job hunts easier. Finally, who doesn’t like the idea of being a true expert in their field – especially one whose expertise has been acknowledged by an unmatched industry leader?

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Vaida Jėčienė