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Cloud computing has become an essential component of the IT industry in the last few years, made evident by the industry’s massive growth. According to research done by tech researcher, Dr. Vailshery, at Statista, the public cloud computing market is estimated to be worth around $141 billion USD worldwide, and is expected to reach over $169 billion USD by 2025. 

This expected growth proves that now is as good a time as ever to get an AWS Cloud Computing certification to jumpstart your career as this industry takes off.

In addition to validating your technical skills, an AWS certification can help you advance your cloud computing expertise. ALX recently launched its Cloud Computing certification programme which is designed to help you level up your IT experience and teach you Cloud Fluency. These skills are the main focus because they can open you up to global career opportunities you might not otherwise have. The programme is designed to provide future leaders in Africa with the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed in the digital economy, by building the digital capabilities needed to leverage cloud computing technology and drive innovation and growth.

The vast – and continually growing – size of Amazon’s cloud infrastructure is 10 times as large as its 14 closest competitors combined. AWS is the cloud software of the future. There will continue to be a growing demand for AWS certified professionals. In this article, we will explore the many career opportunities the ALX Cloud Computing programme offers through its exposure to AWS.

What is AWS Cloud Computing?

Amazon Web Services (AWS), is a cloud computing platform hosted by Amazon. It provides a wide range of cloud-based services that include computing power, storage, database management, machine learning, analytics, and security, to name a few.

Cloud computing refers to the delivery of these computing services and more, including servers, storage, databases, software, and analytics through “the cloud.” The cloud refers to a decentralised network of servers that stretch across the globe that can be accessed over the internet. Instead of storing data locally on a single computer or using a physical server at your location, data and information can be shared and accessed from anywhere, without the need for physical hardware or infrastructure.

Instead of companies investing in special equipment, spending money to train staff or providing ongoing maintenance, these needs are handled by a cloud service provider. AWS is an example of the world’s largest cloud services provider that can help businesses easily scale their applications and services to meet their changing needs, without having to worry about the underlying infrastructure. When you learn AWS cloud computing, you’re gaining the knowledge and skills to make the most of these cloud-based services for your company.

Why is an AWS Cloud Certification Important?

Becoming cloud certified with AWS is necessary if you want to start a cloud computing career. You’ll learn important skills that will set you apart in the growing tech industry. AWS is dominating the cloud computing industry, and it’s important to grow your skills alongside the industry. There are a few other reasons why it is a good idea to become AWS cloud certified:

  1. Demonstrates expertise: AWS certification is proof that you have the necessary skills and knowledge to design, deploy, and operate AWS applications. It demonstrates that you have the expertise needed to build and maintain cloud applications. Basically, it says a lot about what you’re capable of doing to a potential employer when they see it on your CV, which is a huge plus when searching for a job.
  1. Enhances career prospects: When looking for jobs, you’ll find that an AWS cloud certification will qualify you for many more than before. With more opportunities available, you can find a career that is more suited to your interests or has a higher salary than the one you have now. It’s a great way to upskill and, in turn, upgrade your career overall.
  1. Ensures quality: An AWS certification is a standardised certificate that is recognised across  industries. This certification ensures that you have met a certain level of quality and proficiency in AWS cloud services, which ensures that applications you create on AWS are high quality and meet the necessary standards. It’s a way for Amazon to quality control its services and for you to fine-tune your skills.
  1. Helps organisations: When organisations offer to upskill their employees with an AWS cloud certification course, they can rest assured that those who complete the course have the necessary skills and knowledge to work proficiently with AWS. This can help a company build a strong team of AWS professionals who can effectively design and deploy applications on AWS, enhancing the company’s operational efficiency overall.

The AWS Certification Path

Getting AWS certified does not mean that you are stuck in one specific career path. Think of it more as a gateway that opens you up to many, many different opportunities in the world of cloud computing. There are, however, specific paths you can take based on your preferences as you go about learning how to use AWS. These are: Foundational, Architect, Operations, and Developer. 

We’ll go through each of these to better understand what they are, what they do, and why they might appeal to you.

Foundational

The foundational level of the AWS Cloud Computing certification path starts with the AWS Cloud Practitioner certification. This certification is designed for individuals who have a basic understanding of AWS Cloud services and want a certificate of their knowledge.

The AWS Cloud Practitioner certification is a good aspiration for individuals who are new to AWS and cloud computing. If, for example, you completed a course like the ALX Cloud Computing programme, you would have the knowledge necessary to complete this exam and gain this certification. It shows that you have a strong foundation in AWS Cloud services and concepts and will show employers that your skills could be useful to them.

The AWS Cloud Practitioner exam covers the following topics:

  1. Cloud concepts – This domain includes basic cloud computing concepts including the benefits of cloud computing, cloud computing models, and cloud deployment models.
  2. Security & Compliance – In this part of the exam, you will prove your knowledge of AWS security measures and compliance frameworks. These include the AWS shared responsibility model, AWS security services, and data protection mechanisms.
  3. Technology – This domain covers the core AWS services, like computing, storage, and databases, as well as AWS deployment and management services.
  4. Billing & Pricing – This will test your knowledge of the pricing models for AWS services and the different cost optimisation strategies that can be implemented.

Upon completion of a certified Cloud Computing course, you would have the knowledge to get this certification and start your AWS Cloud Computing career.

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Architect

The next level of the AWS Cloud Computing path is the Cloud Architect level. In order to get to that stage, you must complete two different certifications: the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate and the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Professional.

To get these certifications and advance your career, you should already have real-world experience in designing and deploying scalable and fault-tolerant AWS systems. Scalability is a key feature of cloud computing that enables businesses to easily and quickly adjust their computing resources to meet their changing demand. Fault-tolerance refers to the ability of a system or application to continue operating without interruption, even if one or more components fail. These are essential skills needed to advance your AWS cloud computing career.

These certifications will require you to have worked in cloud computing for some time. They are ideal for solutions architects, system engineers, and developers who work with AWS and want to substantiate their knowledge and skills in designing and deploying advanced AWS solutions.

Developer & Operations (DevOps)

As you advance in your career, you might want to work in AWS DevOps. The AWS Certified Developer – Associate and AWS Certified DevOps Engineer – Professional certifications are both necessary in order to do so.

These certifications are intended for individuals with experience in developing and deploying cloud-based applications on AWS. These certifications are ideal for developers, system administrators, and DevOps engineers who work with AWS and want to validate their knowledge to further their careers.

Specialty

The AWS Specialty certifications are the most advanced AWS certifications you can get. They are intended for individuals with advanced skills and experience in specific areas of cloud computing on the AWS platform. These are the certifications that could take your career trajectory into a specific niche. They include: AWS Certified Advanced Networking, AWS Certified Security, AWS Certified Machine Learning, AWS Certified Database, and AWS Certified Data Analytics.

These are ideal for people who want to show their deep knowledge in a specific sector or who have an interest in working in a more specific field in the cloud computing industry.

Kickstart Your Cloud Computing Career with ALX

Companies across Africa continue their digital transition to the cloud as access to the benefits of cloud computing increases. Cloud-based solutions help drive innovation, increase efficiency, and reduce costs, which are all attractive prospects for African business. Many African markets also have unstable power supplies, making physical infrastructure expensive to build and maintain. Cloud computing presents an attractive opportunity to avoid that, which can be attributed to the digital surge that has been happening in the last few years.

With that being said, this digital transformation is happening with AWS. This requires workers who are certified in the AWS cloud computing infrastructure to make that transition a smooth one.

Through the ALX Cloud Computing programme, ALX teaches individuals and organisations across Africa the basics of cloud computing using the AWS infrastructure. The programme covers topics that include: cloud computing fundamentals and the basics of cloud-based infrastructure, cloud-based applications, and cloud-based data management. These are, essentially, the foundations of cloud computing. The ALX programme covers these basics and, from there, you can advance your skills with higher-level certifications.

About the ALX Cloud Computing Programme

The ALX Cloud Computing programme is a great first step in your cloud computing career journey. It is designed to provide you with the skills and knowledge to prepare you for a career in cloud computing using Amazon Web Services (AWS). The programme is career-oriented, focusing on practical, real-life applications of technical skills to prepare you to work in the industry.

The programme is a hybrid course, meaning there is a combination of remote, online, and in-person training. This gives you the flexibility to learn at your own pace and on your own schedule, while still making time for hands-on experience and real-world scenarios. This winning combination makes sure that you have the knowledge and the skills necessary for success.

If you successfully complete the ALX Cloud Computing programme, you will be well-equipped to pass the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam. Obtaining this certification proves that you’re proficient in AWS to potential employers and is the first step towards a long career in cloud computing.

What You’ll Learn With ALX

Over the 7 month course, you will learn a range of topics that teach you how to use AWS core services, including developing, deploying, and managing cloud-based applications on the AWS platform. You’ll learn about all of the different AWS services Amazon offers and how to use them in business to build scalable and secure cloud-based solutions.

Once you’ve completed the ALX Cloud Computing programme, you can confidently walk away with knowledge and understanding of:

  • Core AWS and cloud computing services, including use cases, data security, billing, and pricing models
  • How software and hardware systems bring business visions to life
  • Navigate the architecting and deployment of applications within AWS platforms
  • Developing plans for the adoption of cloud solutions
  • Management and monitoring of cloud platforms

If you are enrolled in the ALX Cloud Computing programme, you also receive the added advantage of in-person ALX Foundations training in the first 3 months of the course. The ALX Foundations programme is designed to provide you with a wide range of skills including interview techniques, soft skills, and essential career competencies that will help prepare you for a career in today’s job market. These, alongside the technical knowledge, are necessary skills for a successful career.

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Entry-Level Cloud Computing Jobs

If your dream is to build a career in cloud computing, various entry-level jobs can help get you there. Some of these include:

  • Cloud DevOps Engineer
  • Full-Stack Web Developer
  • Cloud Developer
  • Cloud Architect
  • Cloud Consultant
  • AWS Cloud Project Manager

Summary

AWS is a powerful and popular cloud computing platform that is used almost universally in the tech industry. Businesses use AWS to build and deploy applications, run websites, and manage data in the cloud all over the world. Its flexibility, scalability, cost-effectiveness, reliability, and security make it a user-friendly and effective cloud platform. With its growing popularity, the career opportunities that come with it are nearly endless – it’s just a matter of getting a start somewhere.

At ALX, we offer courses like the ALX Cloud Computing programme to help prepare you with training and support to kickstart that career. Our goal is to bridge the digital skills gap in Africa by empowering individuals and organisations to build the digital capabilities necessary to succeed in today’s economy. 
If you’re looking to launch your career in cloud computing and gain in-demand skills that will set you apart in the job market, check out the ALX Cloud Computing programme and start your journey to becoming an AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner.

FAQs

How do I start my career in cloud computing?

You can start a career in cloud computing by building foundational skills in IT, gaining cloud-specific knowledge, and earning a certification in a cloud platform like AWS. A certification programme, like the ALX Cloud Computing programme, will help you build experience by working on real-world projects and gaining the technical knowledge necessary to start your career.

Is cloud computing an IT career?

Yes, cloud computing is a growing and important career within the IT industry. As more organisations move their operations to the cloud, the demand for skilled professionals who can design, build, deploy, and manage cloud-based solutions is increasing rapidly.

What is AWS?

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a cloud computing platform that provides a range of services for computing, storage, and data management stored in “the cloud.” AWS was launched in 2006 and is owned and operated by Amazon. The platform provides businesses and organisations with scalable and cost-effective infrastructure that allows them to run their operations and applications in the cloud.

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