5 Cloud Certifications to Start Your Cloud Career in 2024

Written by Coursera Staff • Updated on

With the acceleration in cloud technology adoption, knowledge of working with the cloud is poised to become a valuable asset for IT professionals. Several different cloud service providers offer certifications to expand your skills

[Featured image] A cloud engineer searches for cloud certifications on their laptop.

Cloud computing which uses the internet to store data and services instead of a computer hard drive is growing. Adoption of cloud technology has accelerated because of increased internet access, the reduced cost of using the cloud, new technology, and a pandemic-driven digitisation of many services. 

Business advisory firm Gartner predicts that the cloud will make up 14 per cent of all global enterprise IT spending in 2024 [1]. According to data from Statista, public cloud revenue should surpass ₹500 billion in India in 2023 and grow nearly 24 per cent over the next four years [2].

Benefits of cloud technology certifications

Cloud computing is constantly evolving. Even if you have experience in IT or computer programming, a cloud certification can be helpful. Certifications can demonstrate your abilities to hiring managers and build out important skills that are helpful in the cloud field. The appropriate cloud certifications can also help boost your earning potential, job security, and competitiveness in the job market.

Keep in mind. Cloud computing is a heavily in-demand skill. The average salary for cloud computing engineers in India was ₹5,00,000 as of May 2023, according to Glassdoor [3]. If you have some IT or computer programming experience and want to integrate cloud into your career, a certification can be beneficial. If you're just starting to explore the IT space, you might want to consider an entry-level IT certification.


5 Cloud certifications

The following certifications are often recommended for those trying to position themselves for entry-level cloud-related jobs. Prices listed are as of June 2023.

1. Google Certified Professional (GCP) Cloud Architect

A good starting point for your cloud computing certification journey, the GCP Cloud Architect exam tests your abilities working with Google’s cloud technologies. The proctored exam includes multiple choice and multiple selection questions, and you can take it online or in person at a testing centre.

  • Cost: ₹16470 ($200 USD) [4]

  • What’s being tested: You’ll have to prove you can develop, plan and manage a dynamic and scalable, secure, and resilient system. Security and compliance questions are on the test, along with items to assess your know-how in analysing and optimising technical and business processes.

2. Amazon Web Services (AWS) Solutions Architect - Associate

The AWS Solutions Architect - Associate certification involves a 65-question multiple-choice exam. The certification shows your proficiency in the basic technical concepts of AWS cloud engineering that can position you for related jobs like an AWS solutions architect. 

Just starting out with AWS? The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner certification is designed for candidates with a few months of experience. It can be a way to build up experience for the AWS Solutions Architect - Associate certification. 

  • Cost: about ₹12,379 ($150 USD) [5]

  • What’s being tested: Compute, networking, storage, and database AWS services; deployment and management; basic architectural principles of building in AWS; global AWS infrastructure; network technologies in relation to AWS; among other subjects 

3. Microsoft Certified: Azure Fundamentals

With the second largest market share in the cloud space, Azure can be a useful cloud platform to learn. The foundational certification for Azure involves the AZ-900 exam and is designed for those with both technical and non-technical backgrounds. It’s a solid certification to get you up to speed with fundamental Azure knowledge. From there, you can go on to get the Azure Administrator Associate or Azure Developer Associate certifications, though it’s not a prerequisite. 

  • Cost: ₹3696 [6]

  • What’s being tested: The differences between cloud services like IaaS and PaaS; benefits of using cloud services; core Azure services like virtual machines (VMs), containers, Kubernetes and database services; understanding of Azure core solutions and management tools; basic security, include network security; and other subjects.

4. Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP)

This advanced certification from (ISC)2 indicates a professional mastery of cloud security. Designed for IT and information security leaders, this test demonstrates your understanding of the CCSP Common Body of Knowledge principles and proficiency in designing and overseeing cloud security architecture and operations.

  • Cost: about ₹49,136 ($599 USD) [7]

  • What’s being tested: Cloud architecture and design, cloud security operations, cloud data and application security, cloud platform and infrastructure security, as well as risk and compliance knowledge.

5. Cloud Security Alliance: Certificate of Cloud Security Knowledge (CCSK)

The CCSK is issued by the Cloud Security Alliance, a vendor-neutral certification provider. This means that the things you learn from getting a certification can be applied to different cloud platforms. The CCSK focuses on the fundamentals of cloud security, while other advanced certifications, like the CCSP, indicate a professional level of mastery of cloud security.

  • Cost: about ₹32,402.04 ($395 USD) [8]

  • What’s being tested: Cloud computing concepts and architecture; governance and enterprise risk management; legal issues and contracts; data security; virtualisation and containers; and more

Which cloud certification should you get?

If you decide to get a cloud certification, looking at what cloud platform is often used in your geographical area and target industry is a good idea. Data from Gartner indicates that Amazon Web Services, or AWS, has the largest global market share of cloud infrastructure providers, followed by Microsoft Azure, Alibaba, Google, and IBM [9].


Getting started in cloud computing on Coursera

If you’re interested in becoming a cloud professional, consider enroling in Infrastructure and Application Modernization with Google Cloud on Coursera. This beginner-level course covers topics like modernizing IT infrastructure with Google Cloud, the value of APIs, and more. 

Article sources


Gartner. "Gartner Forecasts Worldwide Public Cloud End-User Spending to Grow 18% in 2021, https://www.gartner.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/2020-11-17-gartner-forecasts-worldwide-public-cloud-end-user-spending-to-grow-18-percent-in-2021." Accessed June 23, 2023.

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