I have basic cloud skills, but I want to broaden my skill set

Tags: ACG

IT is a constantly evolving industry. If you have not added a new skill in the last couple of years you are likely to be going the way of the dodo, carrier pigeon, and local farrier.

Time to upskill?

If you are looking at this article you have already recognized this fact and are trying to figure out the right direction and if you can afford or justify the training effort.

What to study

As an existing Cloud engineering professional you come to this program with a lot of existing understanding. This will put you in a strong position in terms of understanding how the underlying tech works and business implications of features or restrictions. To build on that you need to consider what you want to specialize in, and how much time you can afford to invest.

The obvious option for many is to go deeper with the vendor they already know, and become more of a specialist. This can bring more prestige, and higher rates. However as with all specialization it also brings risk that you may become isolated if that specialty skill becomes unneeded in your company or the industry.

The other option is to go wide and duplicate you skills with other vendors and be able to honestly compare and mix and match among vendors to help your clients get the best solution available.

Or combine the two and go deep in a service area across multiple vendors to best understand the pros and cons.

Whichever direction you choose, I recommend that you start with a broad view of the technology and how to study. While these may seem a bit below you, it is useful to review your foundation and help put your understanding of the different vendors in context. The AWS Exam Prep course is a worthwhile addition at this time as it is designed to improve your study efficiency and should help you regardless of the vendor.

Going deeper

Start by plugging into the industry and see what product areas are expanding. This is generally a good indication that the Vendors see it as a growth area and are investing in new services to capture that market.

See the Course Catalogue (opens in new tab) for links to the latest courses.

Now select the area that you want to get deeper into. Here are some suggestions, however you have the whole catalogue to choose from:

  • Complete and sit the outstanding associate exams
  • Coding for the Cloud series to build your scripting and DevOps skills
  • RHCSA or LPIC-1/-2 to build your Linux skills
  • Essentials For Windows Admins on AWS
  • DynamoDB Beginner to Pro
  • CloudFormation
  • Docker
  • AWS Solutions Architect Professional certification (difficult)
  • AWS DevOps Professional certification (difficult)
  • Azure 70-532, 70-533, & 70-535
  • GCP 200 / 300 (when available)
  • Networking Speciality
  • Security Speciality
  • BigData Speciality

Going wide

The internet and Cloud hosting have truly opened the door to use the best of breed from across multiple vendors. Consider developing understanding and skills in your disciple across multiple vendors so that you can help your clients pick the best choice, and seamlessly integrate across all the main vendors.

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