Where applications, networking, infrastructure and security have always played off each other, it has been historically easy to treat each of those elements somewhat independently as well. But mobility has turned that view upside down and shifted it sideways. Network engineers need to support local, remote and mobile users, and provide proper infrastructure. Application and app development is more heavily slanted toward mobile environments, so security professionals must consider mobility from every angle.
Whatever part of mobility falls in your bailiwick – networking, infrastructure or security – you should find at least one of our top five mobility certifications worth your time and effort.
You’ll see some changes in our lineup this year. The Citrix Certified Professional – Mobility (CCP-M) and the Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate – Mobility (MCSA – Mobility) have been retired and are no longer available. To replace them, we added the Cisco Certified Network Professional – Wireless (CCNP – Wireless) along with GIAC’s Mobile Device Security Analyst (GMOB). The CCNP Wireless is geared more toward networking than toward mobility, but is popular with individuals and employers alike. Also, VMware’s AirWatch solution is now part of Workspace ONE yielding yet another change in the lineup.
Speaking of employers, we’ve listed the results of our informal search of several online job boards for our top five certifications. These numbers indicate how many postings across the U.S. included each certification in its qualifications or requirements on a specific day. This snapshot gives you a pretty good idea of the relative popularity of the certifications in the marketplace.
Job board search results (in alphabetical order, by certification)
CCNP Wireless (Cisco)
VCP-DTM 2019 (VMware)
In fact, it was challenging to come up with a worthwhile lineup this year. One of the issues we found is that there simply aren’t a lot of meaningful mobility certs available. Mobile technology is changing so quickly that it appears that mobile certs are not viewed as keeping up with industry changes.
Read on to learn more about our featured certifications for mobility and mobile technologies.
ACMP: Aruba Certified Mobility Professional
Aruba Networks, acquired by Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) in 2015, is perhaps best known for its network infrastructure solutions, but it’s also a major player in next-generation mobility networks.
The HPE certification program includes several Aruba mobility and network management credentials. The Aruba Certified Mobility Professional, or ACMP, identifies network engineers who install and maintain enterprise mobility and wireless LAN (WLAN) projects. It’s a step up from the Aruba Certified Mobility Associate (ACMA) and is a prerequisite for the more advanced Aruba Certified Mobility Expert (ACMX).
The primary difference between the associate- and professional-level credentials is a focus on skills in environments with a single “Mobility Controller” versus multiple controllers, respectively. The expert-level certification is concerned with implementation and troubleshooting in large-scale WLANs.
The ACMP exam covers concepts, networking and topology design for Layer 2 and Layer 3 networks. An ACMP is expected to have deep knowledge of Aruba First Network Solutions, mobility and WLAN products, UCC Voice, firewall roles and policies, operations, planning and design, intrusion detection systems, troubleshooting techniques, and applications/solutions.
ACMP facts and figures
|>Certification Name||Aruba Certified Mobility Professional (ACMP) V8|
|Prerequisites & Required Courses||Aruba Certified Mobility Associate (ACMA) V6.4 (currently inactive) or V8
At least one to two years of experience deploying network solutions for the enterprise plus three years of experience working with wired LAN infrastructure and switching and routing technologies is recommended.
Recommended training: Scalable WLAN Design and Implementation (SWDI) 8, Rev. 17.31 or Scalable WLAN Design and Implementation (SWDI) 8.4, Rev. 19.21
|Number of Exams||One exam: HPE6-A71, Scalable WLAN Design and Implementation (SWDI) 8.4 (60 questions, 90 minutes)|
|Cost per Exam||$230; exam administered by Pearson VUE.|
|>Self-Study Materials||Search for “aruba” at the HPE Press site. Currently, you can purchase study guides, practice exams and self-directed labs.|
VCP-DW 2019: VMware Certified Professional – Digital Workspace 2019 (VCP-DW 2019)
Last year, we featured the VMware AirWatch Expert Accreditation: Enterprise Mobility in our list of the top five mobility certs. AirWatch, a VMware company, is an industry leader in enterprise mobility management. VMware rolled AirWatch into its Workspace ONE solution. Today, the AirWatch unified endpoint management (UEM) powers VMware’s Workspace ONE, providing end users with an integrated platform for digital workspaces. The featured cert for AirWatch/Workspace ONE is the VMware Certified Professional – Digital Workspace 2019 (VCP- DW 2019). The VCP-DW 2019 certification is geared to IT professionals able to configure and deploy Workspace ONE solutions. Ideal candidates are also able to manage and maintain solutions, as well as troubleshoot potential issues, and should be well versed in multiple operating systems (Android, iOS and Windows 10, for example).
To earn the credential, candidates should possess at least six months of experience working with Workspace ONE Platform (AirWatch EMM and Identity manager) and installing, configuring, managing, and optimizing computing solutions for end users. In addition, candidates must pass a single, professional-level exam. Depending on the current VMware certifications held, some candidates may also be required to attend mandatory training courses. The table below reflects the certification requirements based on credentials held.
VMware AirWatch Expert Accreditation requirements
|AirWatch accreditation||Workspace ONE and Digital Workspace||Required (AirWatch and Workspace ONE training required)||VCP – Digital Workspace 2018 OR Professional Workspace ONE 2019|
|VCP6.x (DCV, CMA or NV) OR VCP7 (CMA or DTM) OR VCP-DTM 2018||Workspace ONE and Digital Workspace||Recommended||VCP – Digital Workspace 2018 OR Professional Workspace ONE 2019|
|VCP-DW 2018||Workspace ONE and Digital Workspace||Recommended||Professional Workspace ONE 2019|
|No VCP||Workspace ONE and Digital Workspace||Required||VCP – Digital Workspace 2018 OR Professional Workspace ONE 2019|
* Six months of experience is recommended.
Although VMware encourages candidates to keep their technology skills current, there is no formal recertification requirement.
VCP-DW 2019 facts and figures
|Certification Name||VMware Certified Professional – Digital Workspace 2019 (VCP- DW 2019)|
|>Prerequisites & Required Courses||Six months of experience working with Workspace ONE Platform (AirWatch EMM and Identity manager) and installing, configuring, managing, and optimizing computing solutions for end users|
|Number of Exams||One exam required: 2V0-761 VMware Certified Professional – Digital Workspace 2018 (65 questions, 135 minutes)
2V0-61.19 VMware Professional Workspace ONE 2019 (65 questions, 105 minutes)
|Cost per Exam||$250 each|
|>Self-Study Materials||The respective exam web pages contain links to recommended training and exam guides, along with additional resources, including the VMware Press, Certification Market Place, the VCP community, and Learning Zone.|
CCNP Wireless: Cisco Certified Network Professional Wireless
A newcomer to the top five list, the Cisco Certified Network Professional Wireless (CCNP Wireless) is an advanced credential geared to IT professionals working with Cisco wireless enterprise networks. Ideal candidates are able to design, implement and secure Cisco wireless networks as well as troubleshoot issues as they arise. As senior team members, CCNP Wireless certification holders can assess business requirements, make recommendations and implement solutions.
Earning the CCNP Wireless is not easy. Candidates must first obtain either the Cisco Certified Network Administrator Wireless (CCNA Wireless) or Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE) credential. In addition, candidates must pass four exams covering designing, deploying, troubleshooting and security Cisco wireless enterprise networks.
On February 24, 2020, Cisco will roll out new certification exams. The CCNP Wireless cert will migrate to the new CCNP Enterprise credential. Cisco encourages all candidates currently working on their CCNP Wireless cert to continue, indicating that any work completed in preparation for earning the CCNP Wireless will be credited toward earning the new CCNP Enterprise certification.
For more information, interested candidates should visit the CCNP Wireless Migration Tool to learn more about how their exams map to the new Cisco certification. The last date to test on the existing CCNP Wireless exams is February 23, 2020.
The CCNP Wireless is valid for three years. To recertify, candidates must pass one of the following exams: a 642-XXX or 300-XXX professional-level exam, the CCIE written exam, the CCDE written or practical exam, or the CCAr interview and board review. Recertification requirements will change once Cisco releases its new exams, so credential holders should check with Cisco close to February 24, 2020, for the new recertification requirements.
CCNP Wireless facts and figures
|Certification Name||Cisco Certified Network Professional Wireless|
|Prerequisites & Required Courses||Cisco Certified Network Administrator Wireless (CCNA Wireless) or any Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE) certification|
|Number of Exams||Four exams:
300-370 WITSHOOT (55-65 questions, 90 minutes)
|Cost per Exam||$300 each|
|Self-Study Materials||Links to training resources, including self-study materials (study groups, learning library, books), e-learning, classroom training, practice exams, learning labs, games, and more, are maintained on the CCNP Wireless web page. Exam topics and sample questions, along with study recommendations are also available on the exam web pages.|
GMOB: GIAC Mobile Device Security Analyst (GMOB)
Making its first appearance on the top five list is GIAC’s Mobile Device Security Analyst (GMOB). Part of GIAC’s Penetration Testing certification domain, the GMOB is geared toward penetration testers, network or system administrators, ethical hackers, technical auditors and security professionals who support tables and mobile devices.
The GMOB certification validates a candidate’s ability to assess and secure mobile devices, mobile applications, systems and networks. Successful candidates are also able to mitigate damage from malware, stolen devices, and penetration testing; unlock and root mobile devices; manage iOS and Android devices; and analyze and manage network activity.
A single exam is required to earn the credential. While recommended, training is not required to earn any GIAC credential. Candidates have 120 days from the date the application is approved to attempt the exam.
To maintain the GMOB, certification holders must earn a minimum of 36 hours of continuing professional education (CPE) credits every four years and pay a renewal fee of $429.
GMOB facts and figures
|Certification Name||GIAC Mobile Device Security Analyst|
|>Prerequisites & Required Courses||None|
|Number of Exams||One exam (75 questions, 2 hours, 71% required to pass)|
|Cost per Exam||$769 if purchased in conjunction with training; $1,899 if purchased independently of training
Each certification attempt includes two practice exams ($318 value)
|Self-Study Materials||GIAC maintains links to exam objectives on the certification web page. Live and online training is also available, along with other learning resources.
Self-paced online training (called SANS OnDemand) and interactive virtual training (called SANS vLive)
VCP-DTM (2019): VMware Certified Professional – Desktop and Mobility 2019
VMware tackles mobility with virtual desktop infrastructures and a host of technologies that enable administrators to support mobile users using virtualization tools and platforms.
The VMware Certified Professional – Desktop and Mobility 2019 (VCP-DTM 2019) certification identifies individuals who can configure and manage environments running on Horizon 7.5 and install, design, and manage Horizon with View in vSphere implementations. The VCP-DTM 2019 is well suited for professionals engaged in the delivery of personalized solutions online services geared to end users, applications and virtual desktops.
The path to earn the VCP-DTM 2019 varies depending on whether the credential seeker currently possesses a VCP and the type of VCP held. The table below reflects the requirements for the various paths to certification.
VCP-DTM 2019 requirements and prerequisites
|Credential||Experience||Training course||Foundation exams||Professional exams|
|VCP-DTM 2018 credential holders||Horizon 7.5 or 7.6||Recommended||Not required||Horizon 7.7 Exam 2019|
|VCP6-DT, VCP6-DTM or VCP7-DTM||Horizon 7.5 or 7.6||Recommended||Not required||Horizon 7.5 Exam 2018 or Horizon 7.7 2019|
|VCP-DTM||Horizon 7.5 or 7.6||Required||Foundations 6, 6.5 or 6.7||Horizon 7.5 Exam 2018 or Horizon 7.7 2019|
|VCP6 (in DCV, CMA, or NV) or VCP7-CMA or VCP6.5-DCV||Horizon 7.5 or 7.6||Recommended||Not required||Horizon 7.5 Exam 2018 or Horizon 7.7 2019|
|VCP-DW 2018||Horizon 7.5 or 7.6||Recommended||Foundations 6, 6.5 or 6.7||Horizon 7.5 Exam 2018 or Horizon 7.7 2019|
|No VCP||Horizon 7.5 or 7.6||Required||Foundations 6, 6.5 or 6.7||Horizon 7.5 Exam 2018 or Horizon 7.7 2019|
* Six months of experience is recommended.
In the past, VMware certifications expired after two years. However, on February 4, 2019, VMware announced that mandatory recertification is no longer required for active certifications.
VCP-DTM (2019) facts and figures
|Certification Name||VMware Certified Professional – Desktop and Mobility 2019|
|Prerequisites & Required Courses||Six months of experience with Horizon 7.5 and 7.6
One required training course for VCP-DTM and candidates with no current VCP
|Number of Exams||One or two exams required depending on current credentials held:
One Foundation Exam: 2V0-620: vSphere 6 Foundations Exam (65 questions, 115 minutes, passing score 300); or
2V0-602: vSphere 6.5 Foundations Exam (70 questions, 105 minutes, passing score 300); or
2Vo-01.19: vSphere 6.7 Foundations Exam 2019 (65 questions, 105 minutes)
One Professional Desktop and Mobility Exam: 2VO-51.18: VMware Professional Horizon 7.5 Exam 2018 (59 questions, 135 minutes) or 2VO-51.19: VMware Professional Horizon 7.7 Exam 2019 (65 questions, 105 minutes)
|Cost per Exam||All Foundation exams are $125; Professional Desktop and Mobility exams are $250. Exams administered by Pearson VUE.|
|Self-Study Materials||VMware provides several free learning videos on the VMware Education & Certification YouTube channel. The VMware Certification Exam Prep page lists videos for each certification (for a fee) as well as links to private training, Lab Connect and free resources.|
Beyond the Top 5: More mobility certs
There are many more mobility certifications that can give job or promotion seekers an advantage in this IT niche.
Android professionals should check out the Android Certified Application Developer. If you’re interested in SAP, that company offers several SAP Mobile certifications on application mobility architectures that leverage the SAP Mobile Platform.
Professionals who work with Oracle Mobile Suite should consider either the Oracle Mobile Development Certified Implementation Specialist or the Oracle Cloud Platform Enterprise Mobile 2018 Associate Developer certification.
Some honorable mention goes to the Certified Casper certifications by Jamf and the Mobility certification from NetMotion. Also, keep your eye on the Credentialed Mobile Device Security Professional (CMDSP) from the Mobile Resource Group. This credential aims at Android and iOS device administrators and architects.