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Are You Certifiable? Why and How to Get Salesforce Certified

Updated: Jul 26, 2020

You might be a new admin, or maybe you’re a super user who wants to learn more. Maybe you’re looking for ways to break into a tech career. There are many reasons to seek a Salesforce certification. When considering a certification, there are a few things to keep in mind:

Certification is not the only way to flex your Salesforce skills. If you’re curious to learn more about the Salesforce platform and practice administration and development, you can sign up for a free Trailhead account and start earning badges. If you’re already in Trailhead and looking for more, check out the Super Badges and Projects; challenge yourself to develop an app and put it on AppExchange.

Another way to get noticed is by participating in the Power of Us Hub and Salesforce Success Communities. Help other admins and devs answer questions about their projects and work your way to MVP status. #Protip: MVPs get special perks like front row tickets at Dreamforce.

If you are seeking to build a Salesforce career, one certification may not be enough. Typically, the Admin 201 Certification will get your foot in the door for most entry level admin positions. If you want to do consulting or if you are seeking more senior positions, you may need several certifications to qualify. I recommend starting with Admin 201, then Platform App Builder. For those seeking consulting positions, I recommend the Sales, Service, or Nonprofit Cloud Consultant Certifications as follow-on to Admin. Check out Salesforce’s certification website for more information on the different certification paths.

It’s an exam. Although you may have been administering Salesforce for years, you will still need to study for the certification. I liken it to the SAT or other formalized tests. You need to spend time learning how the exam is structured, how the answers are scored, and what content is covered.

It’s an investment. Many people do not pass their certification on the first try (I didn’t!) If you want to be successful, it will take time and effort to prepare. I recommend studying consistently for at least 8 weeks for those who are experienced admins, and 3-6 months for those starting from scratch. Remember that the exam costs $200 for the first try, and $99 for a re-try if you fail the first round. Most companies that provide professional development funds will cover the cost – check with your employer to see if you qualify.

I share these considerations not to scare you away from certification, but to give you options and realistic advice for making the best use of your time and skills. If you feel that certification is right for you, read on for my tips on preparing and acing your exam, or contact us to learn more about our certification training programs.

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1 Comment

Sonya Querido
Sonya Querido
Sep 02, 2020

Amazing advice! Thanks for sharing.

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