Certifications are a great way to show industry knowledge of specific tools but also display your commitment and passion for the subject. Many big tech players such as Google, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Microsoft offer certifications to educate users on how to use their tools and services correctly. Besides sharing valuable knowledge, DevOps certification is a great way to onboard new developers and businesses to their platform.
But why should you participate in exams to receive certifications? Let’s first understand the importance of DevOps certifications before diving into the top 10.
How Important Is a DevOps Certification?
There are various reasons why you might want a DevOps certification.
- It allows you to level up your skills and stay up to date with the latest DevOps trends.
- When used on a CV, it will demonstrate your expertise and allow recruiters to quickly validate it through certification providers.
- It displays your passion and commitment.
- It measures your DevOps-related skills.
There are tons of certificates on the market, so it’s important to pick the right certificate. Any web site or organization can hand out certificates, even for the silliest tests. This means not every certificate enjoys the same status in the industry. Furthermore, it’s important that DevOps certifications have been accredited by important tech giants or relevant bodies.
In short, do your due diligence. Always look up the experiences others had so you know what to expect.
10 Best DevOps Certifications for 2020
Here’s a list of the top 10 best DevOps certifications. For most on this list, you’ll have to pay to take the exam and receive your certification.
Docker has become one of the most important technologies for DevOps engineers. It’s almost an unwritten rule that you should be able to handle Docker containers and images. Docker helps you run multiple applications on the same shared operating system. This means they are much more efficient than virtual machines, as no hardware needs to be virtualized. In short, Docker is an extremely powerful tool for managing and orchestrating containers. Therefore, Docker offers DevOps engineers the Docker Certified Associate certification.
The certificate is designed to verify the engineer’s Docker skills. It teaches engineers the basics of Docker, how to run containers, and how to use Docker Swarm to orchestrate them. Next, Docker wants you to learn how to mount storage to containers and manage volumes. Lastly, the course teaches participants how Docker networking works. You’ll learn how to create a Docker Bridge Network, how to expose containers externally, and how to configure Docker to use an external DNS.
Other practices such as networking, deploying, scheduling pods, and logging will also be covered. This exam is one of the most important for verifying your Kubernetes skills. The course has been designed to be practical, and it uses plenty of labs. For that reason, the exam is about solving labs instead of answering questions. The full course details can be found at the Linux Academy.
AWS offers different kinds of certifications for developers, system architects, and DevOps/SysAdmins. The AWS Certified DevOps Engineer certification is obviously aimed at DevOps engineers. The goal is to test the engineer’s capabilities in designing distributed systems on the AWS stack.
In addition, the exam focuses on important practices such as security controls, monitoring, metrics, and logging systems on AWS. The goal is to design highly available systems that can scale easily but also have the ability to self-heal.
The exam tests your knowledge using multiple-choice questions.
Microsoft also offers cloud services for running and scaling applications easily. Therefore, it offers an exam that helps DevOps engineers become knowledgeable about running services on its Azure platform. According to the exam page, the exam focuses on the following topics:
- Implementing and managing DevOps development processes
- Implementing continuous integration, continuous delivery, and continuous feedback
- Designing a DevOps strategy
5. Google Cloud Platform: Professional Cloud DevOps Engineer
Of course, Google needs to be included in this list. Among many of the certifications it offers is the Professional Cloud DevOps Engineer certification. The course focuses on developing reliable development operations with a balance between reliability and speed of delivery.
The exam aims to meet the following requirements:
- Applying site reliability engineering principles
- Fine-tuning the performance of services
- Building and maintaining CI/CD pipelines
- Implementing logging and strategies to monitor services
6. Udacity Nano-Degree Program: Cloud DevOps Engineer
Udacity is a web site that offers nano-degree programs. A nano-degree can be seen as a short, intensive course. The Cloud DevOps Engineer course lasts four months, requires roughly ten hours per week, and focuses on the following three core points:
- Building CI/CD pipelines, monitoring, and logging
- Scaling microservices using Kubernetes
- Securing services using industry-acknowledged infrastructure patterns
The benefit of completing your certification through Udacity is that it has been designed by industry experts who provide you with a technical mentor that will guide and support you throughout the program.
If you are not yet very experienced with development operations, you might want to check out this introductory course for site reliability engineering (SRE) by The Linux Foundation. It lasts for ten weeks and requires one to two hours of work per week. In order to receive a verified certificate, you have to pay €181.
Red Hat offers an exam for DevOps/SysAdmin practitioners to verify their Ansible skillset. The goal is to automate the configuration of systems and applications using Ansible. To participate in this exam, you need some understanding of how Ansible works. For example, you need to be able to create Ansible playbooks that help you configure systems according to a template.
9. Infrastructure Automation With Terraform on Udemy
Udemy hosts a paid course that gets you going with Terraform. According to the documentation, Terraform is a tool for building, changing, and versioning infrastructure safely and efficiently. It uses configuration files that describe how to run an application and which components are needed.
Terraform has gained a strong reputation in the development operations industry. The tool is comparable to popular tools such as Ansible, Chef, and Puppet. However, it focuses on the automation of the infrastructure itself. It’s definitely a bonus to have experience using Terraform as a DevOps practitioner.
The Udemy course includes 90 lectures which total 8 hours of video material. It also explains how you can use Terraform with AWS.
There are plenty of cheap courses on Udemy to level up your skill on the Jenkins continuous integration tool, which is important for a DevOps engineer as it supports the agile methodology. Jenkins helps developers receive fast feedback about their code.
Jason Taylor’s course teaches you the basics of operating a CI server using Jenkins in four hours. It helps you set up your first Jenkins server and teaches you how to extend Jenkins’s functionality with plugins. It’s a great course for quickly brushing up your Jenkins knowledge.
Lastly, take a look at Retrace, a tool designed by Stackify that gives developers increased visibility into their code’s performance and helps prevent performance bottlenecks. Retrace helps you gain valuable expertise while developing yourself into a DevOps engineer. You can acquire some of the same knowledge by becoming certified in Google Cloud Platform or as a Kubernetes administrator, as performance monitoring is crucial to those certifications.
Certifications help you show your passion and commitment. And since it can also give you a head-start over other job applicants, it’s definitely worth the investment!
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