AWS Training and Certification Blog

Four tips to help you build a future in the AWS Cloud

Today, we’re continuing our series on career changes and looking at how individuals new to the AWS Cloud can get started. Previously, we covered Amazon’s commitment to train 29 million people around the globe with free cloud-computing skills training by 2025, the expected growth of jobs that require cloud skills, and the ways to build your expertise through curiosity and problem solving. You might be wondering how to get started if you’re beginning your journey. Here are four tips to help you build a future in the AWS Cloud:

1. Get cloud curious

Start with the basics: cloud computing in general and the fundamentals of the AWS Cloud platform. Put the cloud in context by exploring how some of our customers are using the AWS Cloud to accelerate their business. What does the cloud have to do with navigating the world’s oceans, car shopping, food security, and genomics? Find out from some of our AWS customers, such as Cox Automotive, Bayer Crop Science, and AstraZeneca. You can even see the cloud at work when your next Amazon package arrives on your doorstep with one-day Prime delivery.

Once you’ve explored the AWS Cloud, learn about common job roles for a cloud environment. AWS Training provides a free digital-training course called Job Roles in the Cloud, which covers how on-premises roles compare to cloud roles. It also covers how job roles can evolve, depending on the level of adherence to a DevOps model, by using infrastructure as code.

2. Make a specific plan

If a cloud role is your goal, start strong by identifying a specific milestone for your first step. We suggest setting a goal to earn an AWS Certification. AWS Certification exams are created by AWS experts in the relevant role or technical area. By preparing for one of these exams, you’ll build the required skills identified by skilled practitioners in the field. By passing the exam, you’ll show you meet the bar set by AWS experts and you’ll get an industry-recognized credential. You can add your AWS Certification digital badge to your LinkedIn profile and on your resume. Guillermo Fisher, director of engineering, infrastructure, at Handshake and an AWS Data Hero, says “A certification exam can be a forcing function that exposes you to new tech and solidifies your understanding of tech you’ve been using for a while.”

For anyone new to cloud, we suggest you start with the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certification. By preparing for and earning this certification, you’ll expand your fundamental understanding of cloud computing, including core AWS services and use cases, billing and pricing models, security concepts, and more. This certification can be a first step toward a more advanced AWS Certification if you are pursuing a technical cloud role. AWS offers free training to help you prepare for the exam.

Also consider joining your local AWS User Group to find a network of builders and innovators in your area.

3. Get hands-on experience

The best way to learn AWS and prepare for an AWS Certification is to build with AWS. You can get hands-on experience through self-paced labs, which give you temporary access to a live AWS environment with step-by-step instructions to help you learn. You can also sign up for the AWS Free Tier to learn with easy-to-follow tutorials for multiple use cases, such as how to host a static website and how to run a serverless “Hello, World!”

Maciek Trzeciak, a DevOps engineer at kreuzwerker, recently earned AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate. He used hands-on experience to help him prepare. Maciek shares, “I signed up for an AWS Free Tier account to get some hands-on experience while I was wrapping my head around the theory. I really enjoyed the well-balanced blend of learning theory and also the hands-on exposure to AWS services. It felt great knowing that I was actually building some services in the cloud.”

4. Start preparing for AWS Certification

Join cloud enthusiasts all over the world in taking a challenge to earn your first AWS Certification by July 1, 2021. AWS is hosting the Global Kick Start: Get AWS Certified Global Challenge to motivate and support people on this journey. Participants in the challenge will receive a free practice exam voucher and follow a recommended preparation path to prepare for the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam. The preparation path includes live weekly trainings on Twitch, self-paced digital courses, recommended documentation, and review sessions, along with weekly tips to help you keep pace. Participants can take the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam in English, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, and Simplified Chinese for $100 USD at testing centers globally or with online proctoring from home.

If you aren’t working in a cloud role, AWS Certification is one way to start your journey. Veliswa Boya, a senior developer advocate at AWS, says earning a certification kick-started her career transformation. Veliswa shares, “I feel that getting the AWS Certification, especially since I was not working with cloud at the time, said that I meant business. It opened doors for me to have conversations that ultimately led to me getting my first opportunity in this cloud space.”

The cloud is growing, and we invite builders and innovators everywhere to start their cloud journey today. If you’re considering your own career pivot, check out the AWS Cloud Pivot Playbook or sign up for our Global Kick-Start: Get AWS Certified Challenge.