AWS is a good career and is one of the top-paying IT jobs an engineer can attain. With the rise in cloud computing, the demand for having some type of cloud platform experience is growing. Many companies are migrating their data centers to the cloud for growth, scalability, and savings. It’s just a lot easier and more efficient to run a cloud infrastructure rather than a physical one. In this article, we will go over the advantages and disadvantages of choosing AWS as a career choice.
What is AWS?
AWS stands for Amazon Web services. Amazon has produced a host of online services from simple virtual storage boxes to virtual servers that run entire data centers. The cloud giant was created in 2006 with only a few apps, but over time Amazon has found a way to service millions of customers effectively on its cloud infrastructure.
Pursuing an AWS career
If you’re wanting to pursue a career in AWS, then you have a few options to get you started. AWS has created 7 different certifications that prove you have knowledge and experience in specific services that AWS provides. Although having one of these certifications will not ensure that you will get the job, it will surely help you get in front of the right people. These certifications show that you have hands-on AWS experience which is extremely favorable to employers.
Let’s go over the different AWS certifications:
- Cloud Practitioner– This is a non-technical entry-level exam. It’s for someone looking to get an overall understanding of AWS
- Solutions Architect-This is the first level exam for starting your AWS career. It covers basic product features of the AWS Platform
- Developer Associate-This exam is for application developers( Programmers )
- System ops Administration Associate-This certification is for individuals with one to two year extreme in system Admin roles
- Solutions Architect professional– This is the professional version of the solution Architect test. It covers more of the AWS services.
- DevOps Engineer professional- This exam is mixed with admin, cloud deployment strategies, and code understanding. It’s basically for service deployment.
How much can you expect to Make?
Choosing to go the AWS route in your career can be very lucrative. According to Glassdoor, the average AWS salary is $131,063. That’s a pretty high-income level for not being an executive, manager, Vice President. Getting any AWS certification with a few years of experience could land you a great job. To be honest, you probably don’t need two years of experience if you already have a good amount of tech experience and can prove you have what it takes. This is a great opportunity because the demand for this AWS is much higher than the supply. In other words, more companies are looking to hire someone with AWS experience over other cloud-computing platforms, such as google cloud and Microsoft Azure.
Are AWS Certifications Difficult?
Well, this is a subjective question because the difficulty of any given test depends on the user, preparation, and study skills. The right question to ask is, out of the seven tests, which was created to be more difficult? Below we list the easiest to the hardest test
As you can see, the cloud practitioner test is going to be the easiest to take, then the exams move up to associate and professional levels. I wrote an additional article that really goes into depth on how difficult the cloud practitioner exam is. If you are thinking about taking this exam, I recommend you read that first.
The specialty exams will either require a practitioner certification or an associate Architect to take them. In another light, if you’re just wanting to have a basic level of knowledge of Aws, then go for the cloud practitioner. It will introduce you to the world of AWS and maybe even get you into the door at a job. If you’re a little more serious and want to make AWS a career, then we suggest you start with the Associate’s Architect. Passing this test will give you enough juice to demand higher-paying AWS jobs. This certification ensures that you not only have general knowledge, but you can also perform basic activities.
Side Note: If you obtain the Associate’s Architect and have no prior experience, then show off a few projects you have created in AWS. This will show employers that even though you don’t have the experience, you still know more than enough to perform various activities.
If you are very serious and want to get a top-paying job within AWS, then we suggest you pursue the professional version of the exam. Although there are no prerequisites to taking any AWS exam, we recommend you take the associates exam first before moving on to the professional.
Price of Each AWS Exam:
- Solutions Architect- $150
- Systems Op Admin- $150
- Developer- $150
- Solution Architect-$300
- Dev Ops-$300
- Advanced Networking- $300
- Big Data- $300
- Security- $300
- Machine Learning- $300
- Alex Skill builder- $300
How to start Your AWS Career?
One of the easiest ways to start is to jump into the AWS lake as soon as possible. Amazon allows you to sign up and use their Free AWS tier for a year, so you can start playing around asap. The free tier gives you access to over 60 products and services on Amazon. Next, you must attain an AWS certificate, but this is a lot easier said than done. If you already work for a company that’s offering an AWS role, then you may be able to push into that role without a certification. Many employers like to train and hire from within and are willing to trust an unqualified employee over a new candidate. If you are like everyone else then decide which AWS exam you would like to take and make a plan of action to get it done
How to prepare for the AWS Exam?
There are a few ways you can prepare for the AWS exam. Below we will list the most effective ways to prepare and take the test.
You can purchase an AWS study book to prepare for the exam. Many of these books are informative and have AWS practice questions that are similar to the actual test.
You can also purchase a course on Udemy to help with your preparation. Many of the courses on Udemy are highly detailed and will walk you through every part of the test. The courses also have hands-on labs that will not only give you a better understanding but experience using different features in AWS.
. Purchase a course from
AWS Solutions Architect
Here is another great video course from Pearson. This course gives you 6 hours of instruction/lessons on how to pass the AWS Solutions Architect exam. This video course also comes with a practice test to thoroughly prepare you for the exam.
This course gives you 14 hours of video instructions to prepare for the Developers exam.
Join an Institution
If you are serious about getting an AWS exam and don’t want to take the Self-pace role, then you can enroll in an institution or take a boot camp. This way you will not only be well prepared for the exams but will also gain much-needed knowledge that will serve you for years to come.
Cloud computing is the future in technology, and if you want to grab a piece of that pie then pursuing an AWS career is a great start. Trust us, the payoff from going this route can be ridiculously lucrative. In the future, we believe everything will be connected to some type of server instead of being standalone, so being able to manage and understand these servers will put you ahead of the game.