The Definitive Google Cloud Certifications for Businesses and IT Workers

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If you want to showcase your expertise in a particular field of IT technology, you should consider studying for and earning some certifications. Certifications demonstrate that the holder has knowledge and skills for a specific tool, industry, or technology. Often, these certifications are offered by major vendors in that technology space, and that holds true for cloud computing as well. The leading cloud providers, like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud, all offer their own cloud certification series to those who exhibit proficiency for their cloud environment.

For businesses, these certifications show that your company and employees are skilled in the cloud environments they use. Earning a Google Cloud certification demonstrates expertise with using the Google Cloud platform, both as a whole and on the individual service level. There are currently eight certifications offered by Google, each one targeting either a specific solutions field or general application of Google Cloud. Below, we’ve listed the certifications that every enterprise IT professional that uses Google Cloud on a daily basis should earn.

Google Associate Cloud Engineer Certification
Certification level: Associate
Cost: $125 USD
Exam length: 2 hours

The Google Associate Cloud Engineer certification demonstrates the ability to deploy applications, monitor operations, and manage enterprise solutions in Google Cloud. A holder of this certification can use the Google Cloud Console and its command-line interface to perform platform-based tasks and maintain solutions that run off of Google Cloud. At its basic level, this certification shows that a user is familiar enough with Google Cloud to develop and maintain basic applications and solutions. It covers operation of a Google Cloud solution at every point of its life cycle, from development to release to configuring updates.

Google Professional Cloud Architect Certification
Certification level: Professional
Cost: $200 USD
Exam length: 2 hours

For enterprises that heavily utilize Google Cloud to build solutions, the Google Professional Cloud Architect certification shows expertise in leveraging Google Cloud services. Not only does this certification indicate that the user is very familiar with the Google Cloud platform, it specifically shows that you can develop Google Cloud-driven business solutions. By earning this certification, users demonstrate that they’re able to build, secure, and manage a cloud architecture, optimize the solution’s technical and business processes, and configure the solution with security features.

Google Professional Cloud Security Engineer Certification
Certification level: Professional
Cost: $200 USD
Exam length: 2 hours

Developing and implementing cloud security solutions is one of the most important skills to have for cloud users. Google’s Professional Cloud Security Engineer certification demonstrates that the holder can design and utilize cloud solutions while maintaining security practices and leveraging Google Cloud security services. This certification is chiefly designed to show that the holder is familiar with the best practices for cloud security; some highlighted practices include identity and access management, organizational structure, data protection, network security, complying with regulations, and analyzing data logs.

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Google Professional Collaboration Engineer Certification
Certification level: Professional
Cost: $200 USD
Exam length: 2 hours

Businesses that use Google Cloud typically use other services in the cloud-based G Suite, including Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Drive. By earning the Professional Collaboration Engineer certification, the user demonstrates that they know how to leverage G Suite and Google Cloud solutions together. Certified Collaboration Engineers operate Google Cloud and G Suite mail routing, identity management, endpoint access, and resource management functions; they also integrate engineering capabilities such as programming languages, APIs, and automation.

G Suite Certification
Certification level: G Suite
Cost: $75 USD
Exam length: 2 hours

The Google Cloud G Suite certification demonstrates that the holder can successfully operate the G Suite toolset. The G Suite comprises several of Google’s cloud-based services; these services are commonly used by businesses and enterprises to accomplish essential tasks and workflows. While this certification is not necessarily tied to any Google Cloud-exclusive services, it shows proficiency in work with cloud-based solutions and operating cloud best practices.

Everything else you need to know about Google certifications
There are two main Google Cloud certification levels; Associate, for which Google recommends at least six months of hands-on experience with the Google Cloud Platform; and Professional, for which Google recommends at least three years of industry experience and one year of designing and managing Google Cloud solutions. They also have a G Suite level for their G Suite certification, which is intended for professionals who use the G Suite platform.

Google Cloud certifications, unless otherwise specified, last for two years before they need to be recertified. If you fail an exam, you have to wait 14 days before you can take it again. This period increases to 60 days if you fail a second time, and a year if you fail a third time.

Running a cloud environment and need help managing the cloud services you use? Our MSP Buyer’s Guide contains profiles on the top cloud MSP vendors for AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud, as well as questions you should ask providers and yourself before buying. We also offer an MSP Vendor Map that outlines those vendors in a Venn diagram to make it easy for you to select potential providers.

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