Power-up your resume with a certification

Google cloud is making waves in the enterprise space by increasing speed and efficiency for companies like Evernote, solving complex problems for a fraction of the cost in medical research, and working with industry leaders like Snap to enable the latest mobile video technologies. As companies move to the cloud, demand for technical professionals continues to grow.

According to Glassdoor.com, the average Cloud Architect salary in the US is over $140,000. Are you strategizing your next career move? How do you prove you have what it takes to be a cloud architect, and set yourself (and your resume) apart?

Earning a certification is a smart way to fast-track your cloud career. Certifications help people and companies connect. And a Google Cloud certification puts you at the forefront of an accelerating industry.

Browse certifications & register.

Google Certified Professional Cloud Architect

The Google Certified Professional – Cloud Architect exam is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your skills. The certification proves your ability to design, develop and manage dynamic solutions that are robust, scalable and highly available.

Are you going to Next ‘17? Get certified while you’re there and grow your network (pass the exam and you’ll get exclusive access to the certification lounge, too!).

re:Invent Your Resume

re:Invent 2016 is going strong – new services and expanded capabilities are being announced almost hourly. Whether you are in Las Vegas or keeping an eye on new developments at home, it’s the perfect time to start reinventing your career. AWS experts are in demand, and Qwiklabs is a great tool to expand your Cloud and AWS smarts.

One way to maximize your resume is to add a Qwiklabs Quest badge (click here to see all available Quests). Did you know that Quest badges are AWS-authorized? When you complete a Quest and earn a badge, do yourself a favor and add a qwik line to your resume.

What’s a Quest? It’s a collection of hands-on labs, usually between 6 and 8 labs total, geared towards learning a specific area of AWS. For example, the Lambda Quest is an 8-labber. It starts with the Intro to AWS Lambda lab, and progresses through more advanced use cases, including building an Alexa skill with Lambda, and finishes with a lab exploring how to access RDS and ElastiCache behind a VPC with Lambda. (It also happens to be one of the most popular Quests. Interested? Enroll here.) Pick from 20+ Quests, including certification prep Quests – something for everyone! 

Click here to pick your Quest (enrolling is free).

Considering the AWS Certified Security – Specialty (Beta) exam?

The new AWS Certified Security – Specialty (Beta) exam is available now. Perfect timing! You can study up with the new Security on AWS Quest. Click here to enroll (enrolling is free). Get hands-on experience working with real use cases in the AWS Console while learning the practical applications of critical AWS security concepts and strategies. 

Here’s what you should know about the new exam:

  • For a limited time, sign up and get beta pricing. That’s a 50% discount (normally $300, now $150 – but register soon, the promo won’t last). 
  • In your next job upgrade, with this exam on your resume, target IT security-related positions around the world. According to Glassdoor.com, the average salary for an “IT Security” position is $95k in the US. Fine print: this isn’t a guarantee of any future salary in any way (but it’s a pretty compelling reason to explore opportunities). 
  • There are some eligibility requirements for this exam. For starters, you will need one of the following current AWS Certifications: AWS Certified Solution Architect – Associate, AWS Certified Developer – Associate, or AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate. Qwiklabs can help you study up for those, too. Check out the Solutions Architect – AssociateDeveloper – Associate, or the SysOps Administrator – Associate exam prep Quests. 

AWS Certification Quests

AWS Educate Program for Veterans & Family

On Veteran’s Day, AWS Educate announced a new program to help US veterans and their spouses skill up with cloud training and career resources. Are you a vet? Do you know a vet? This program is worth checking out.  

The AWS Educate Program helps individuals skill up on the cloud with career-centric training and learning resources. The program focuses on 4 job families that align with the AWS Educate Job Board: 

  • Cloud Architect
  • Software Developer
  • Operations-Support Engineer
  • Analytics and Big Data Specialist
Within these categories, the AWS Educate program offers 25+ different paths to prepare you for the next step in your cloud career. 

AWS Educate Program benefits include:

Happy birthday, Alexa

What’s so special about November 7? On this date in 1492, the Ensisheim Meteorite, the oldest meteorite with a known date of impact, struck a wheat field in France. And, two years ago, we got Alexa! 

Amazon Alexa is changing the way the world thinks about technology, whether you’re looking for some help when your kid might have a fever or if you want to modernize a 10-year-old Father’s day gift. Alexa has become an ubiquitous household helper. 

But the real power of Alexa is developer accessibility. Literally anyone can get an Alexa skill up and running in a matter of hours. Got an idea? Yours can be the next “skill” (the Alexa equivalent of an app) in the library. And Qwiklabs can help! Click here to see all the different types of skills you can develop with Qwiklabs.

re:Invent your resume with AWS Certification & get these exclusive benefits

Heading AWS re:Invent-ward? Pre-register for an AWS Certification exam at re:Invent and get your hands on these exclusive benefits:

  • Study up with 25 free Qwiklabs credits. Register for an onsite exam by Nov. 8 (11:59 PM PST) and you will get 25 free Qwiklabs credits (rewarded to your Qwiklabs account Nov. 9). Don’t have a Qwiklabs account yet? No worries, sign up by Nov. 8 and one will be created for you, with 25 credits ready and waiting. Already pre-registered? Your name’s on the list and you will see your reward Nov. 9. Click here for full details.

Use the credits however you want! But may I suggest enrolling in one of the AWS Exam Prep Quests (you can add a Quest badge to your resume too – show off your “flight hours” with the AWS Console!):

Developer-Associate Exam Prep Quest: Practice fundamental and advanced concepts for working with Amazon Simple Storage Service, AWS IAM, Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon API Gateway, AWS Lambda, AWS Elastic Beanstalk, AWS Security Token Service, Amazon CloudFront and Auto Scaling.

SysOps Administrator-Associate Exam Prep Quest: Practice fundamental and advanced concepts for working with AWS IAM, Amazon EC2, Amazon EBS, Amazon RDS, Amazon VPC, Auto Scaling, AWS CLI, and AWS CloudFormation.

Solutions Architect-Associate Exam Prep Quest: Practice fundamental and advanced concepts for working with Amazon EC2, Amazon CloudFront, Amazon EBS, AWS IAM, and Amazon VPC.

Solutions Architect-Professional Exam Prep Quest: Go to the next level of hands-on practice with key services addressed in the AWS Certified Solutions Architect –Professional exam blueprint.

AWS Certification Exam Prep Quests

More exclusive benefits at AWS re:Invent 2016:

Can you pass the Turing test?

Pass the Turing test, get your share of a $2.5 million prize. Fine print: your original socialbot, powered by Alexa, is actually what gets tested. 

The Alexa Prize, announced last week, is a $2.5 million competition to advance conversational artificial intelligence. 

Have you heard any of this from your device(s) of choice?

  • “Hmm, I didn’t catch that”
  • “Sorry, I’ll try harder”
  • “Can you please repeat the question”

The people behind the Alexa Prize want to scrub these phrases from the memory banks forever.

Got AWS Enterprise Support? Then you’ve got labs.

qwikLABS is now part of the AWS Enterprise Support perks! Read more here. Wondering what to do with your shiny new qwikLABS credits? Here are a few ways to take advantage of your new benefits:

Prepare for AWS certification with one of the certification exam prep Quests. (Here’s more about what a Quest is.) Did you know that to be part of the AWS Partner Network (APN), you need a certain number of AWS certified staff? 

qwikLABS can help you prepare for the Developer-Associate Exam, the SA Associate Exam, the SA Professional Exam, and the SysOps-Associate Exam. Which badge appeals to you?

qwikLABS badges: AWS Certification Prep

AWS re:Invent 2016 – Seeking your pro-tips

Attention! We are seeking your best tips, tricks, and must-not-misses for AWS re:Invent 2016. Been before? Heard from re:Invent veterans? What should you do to get the most of of your re:Invent experience? 

Send us your tips – tagged with #qwikLABS – tweet us @qwikLAB, post on our Facebook wall, our LinkedIn page, or comment on this post (sending an email does not count). Next week, we will pick the 10 best tips and share them with you. 

….And what’s the fun of a contest without a prize? The 10 winners will get 15 qwikLABS credits each, good for any AWS lab (or labs) in the catalog!

The deadline is September 16 if you want to be eligible for the contest.

Some ideas to get the conversation started…

  • What one event is an absolute must?
  • What’s your strategy for getting the best seats?
  • Who has the best swag? 
  • What was the most useful thing you brought home with you? (Maybe a handful of qwikLABS token cards..?)
  • Unforgettable breakfast spots, where you run into the most interesting people?
  • Which event has the best snacks?

Good luck!

AWS re:Invent 2016 – Getting there

Las Vegas Boulevard South

Coming Soon: AWS re:Invent 2016. Photo courtesy of D-Stanley(CC Attribution)

Are you planning to be at AWS re:Invent in November? qwikLABS is going, and we hope to see you there! 

This is the first in a series of posts we’ll write leading up to the event. You will see all kinds of information, from packing lists to treasure maps. Today’s topic? How to get your ticket.

The easiest way, of course, is to register. 

Looking for a challenge? There are a few ways to get to re:Invent for less…

Win a ticket with the Serverless Chat Bot Competition

  • The challenge: Build a chat bot and win a ticket to re:Invent 2016! 8 tickets (plus other goodies) are up for grabs.
  • Deadline: Sept. 29
  • Click here for official details from the AWS team
  • Wondering where to start? Sign up for a free webinar from AWS. The webinar promises in-depth exploration of the skills you’ll need to master to build your own chat bot. 
  • … and finally, qwikLABS can help you learn to build a serverless chat bot! (Handy, eh?) With this Slack Chat Bot lab, you’ll get step-by-step instructions and a template for creating a chat bot. You can customize it to your heart’s content, then use it to enter the competition!

Earn the Alexa Developer Discount

If we find other nifty competitions or promos, we’ll be sure to share them. Good luck!