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Best Mobility Certifications 2018

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Credit: leungchopan/Shutterstock

Where applications, networking, infrastructure and security have always played off each other, it has been historically easy to treat each of those elements somewhat standalone, 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.

This year we replaced the CompTIA Mobility+ with the MCSE: Mobility certification. The CompTIA credential retires at the end of 2017, and the MCSE: Mobility is new but already generating lots of traction. We also dropped the Cisco CCNP Wireless in favor of the VMware VCP6-DTM. The CCNP Wireless is a solid certification and highly popular with employers and individuals, but it's geared more toward networking than toward mobility.

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.

Certification

SimplyHired

Indeed

LinkedIn Jobs

Linkup.com

Total

ACMP (Aruba)

84

81

71

19

255

AW EM (VMware AirWatch)

106

113

89

40

348

CCP-M (Citrix)

159

168

172

68

567

MCSE: Mobility (Microsoft)

149

154

143

70

516

VCP6-DTM (VMware)

7

7

15

3

32

It was challenging to come up with a fifth certification for our top five this year. Although the job board results for the VCP6-DTM are low compared to other featured certifications, VMware's reputation was the deciding factor. Other certifications we considered for fifth place are mentioned in the "Beyond the Top 5" section at the end of this article.

Read on to learn more about our featured certifications for mobility and mobile technologies.

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 Networks mobility and WLAN products, firewall roles and policies, operations, planning and design, intrusion detection systems, troubleshooting techniques and applications/solutions.

Certification Name

Aruba Certifiec Mobility Professional (ACMP)

Prerequisites & Required Courses

Recommended training:
Scalable WLAN Design and Implementation (SWDI) course or Aruba Mobility Boot Camp

Number of Exams

One exam: HPE6-A29, Aruba Certified Mobility Professional (ACMP) 6.4 (75 multiple-choice questions, 90 minutes)

Cost per Exam

$125; exam administered by Pearson VUE.

URL

https://certification-learning.hpe.com/tr/datacard/Certification/Aruba-ACMPV64

Self-Study Materials

Search for "aruba" at the HPE Press site. Currently, you can purchase the Aruba Mobility Boot Camp for $500, which is a self-paced virtual lab with a lab guide.

AirWatch, a VMware company, is an industry leader in enterprise mobility management. The AirWatch solution supports many different mobile platforms and operating systems, as well as multiple devices, email platforms, applications and browser management products.

Aimed primarily at AirWatch customers and partners, AirWatch Academy helps users learn how to implement, install, configure, deploy, manage and support AirWatch solutions. VMware offers Associate, Professional and Expert enterprise mobility certifications aimed at IT professionals (as well as a K-12 education certification). Each level builds on the previous one, creating a classic certification ladder:

  • Associate level: VMware AirWatch Associate Accreditation: Enterprise Mobility (associated with Configure and Manage course)
  • Professional level: VMware AirWatch Professional Accreditation: Enterprise Mobility (associated with Configure and Deploy Integrated Solutions course)
  • Expert level: VMware AirWatch Expert Accreditation: Enterprise Mobility (associated with the Install and Deploy on Premise Solutions course)

To achieve each certification, you must take the associated course. VMware Education offers classroom, live online or on-demand courses, as well as bootcamps and virtual, hands-on labs. Certification candidates can also access a free AirWatch two-hour course through the VMware myLearn portal, which requires users to create an account.

Certification Name

VMware AirWatch Expert Accreditation: Enterprise Mobility

Prerequisites & Required Courses

VMware AirWatch Enterprise Mobility Associate and Professional accreditations
VMware AirWatch: Install and Deploy on Premise Solutions course

Number of Exams

One exam (45 questions, 90 minutes, passing score 70 percent)

Cost per Exam

The cost of the exam included in training costs; courses start at $895 and bootcamps start at $3,300
Exam administered through the VMware Education (the myLearn portal)

URL

https://mylearn.vmware.com/mgrreg/plan.cfm?plan=66497&ui=www_edu

Self-Study Materials

Study guides are provided as part of the training courses. A free two-hour AirWatch course is available through the VMware myLearn portal and the VMware Learning Zone (VMware recommends signing up for a free trial subscription).

The Citrix certification program offers a handful of solutions-based credentials for apps and desktops, networking and enterprise mobility management.

The Citrix Certified Professional – Mobility (CCP-M) recognizes mobile designers and developers who design, install, configure and manage a Citrix XenMobile Enterprise solution. This credential addresses the unique nature of bring your own device (BYOD) issues, along with mobile device and application management, security and IT compliance requirements.

The CCP-M certification requires candidates to pass a single exam. To prepare for this certification, candidates are encouraged to take a Citrix XenMobile training course and study the exam prep guide.

With a $5,000 price tag, the recommended training course will probably be purchased by only the most serious of certification seekers (or those whose employers' training budgets stretch that far). In fact, employers may be willing to cover the cost of training to help develop a highly skilled workforce on Citrix XenMobile solutions, so check with your management before signing up.

Once the Mobility certification is achieved, it remains valid for three years. Credential holders must pass the latest exam or attend instructor-led training to recertify.

Certification Name

Citrix Certified Professional - Mobility (CCP-M)   

Prerequisites & Required Courses

Recommended training: CXM-303 Deploying Enterprise Mobility Solutions with Citrix XenMobile; available in ILT or ILT forms for $5,000
Certification valid for three years; must recertify by passing latest exam before your three-year expiration date

Number of Exams

One exam: 1Y0-371, Designing, Deploying, and Managing Citrix XenMobile 10 Enterprise Solutions

Cost per Exam

$300; exam administered by Pearson VUE.

URL

training.citrix.com/cms/index.php/certification/mobility-certification/

Self-Study Materials

Citrix Training Exam Prep Guide is available for free.

If you manage a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) environment that relies on a Microsoft infrastructure, consider validating your skills by earning the MCSE: Mobility credential. Microsoft introduced this certification in 2016, along with four other MCSE and one MCSD cert, when it streamlined its program.

As you pursue this credential, you first earn the Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA): Window 10 certification. Then you must pass one of three exams to achieve the MCSE: Mobility. Topics in those certification exams cover Windows desktop (Window 10) and applications deployment, System Center Configuration Manager and Intune administration, and Enterprise Mobility Suite.

Microsoft doesn't require MCSE: Mobility certification holders to recertify. However, by passing an elective exam each calendar year, you add an entry to your transcript that indicates your commitment to staying current on technologies and expanding your skillset.

Certification Name

MSCE: Mobility

Prerequisites & Required Courses

MCSA: Windows 10
Recommended training:

  • Deploying Windows Desktops and Enterprise Applications (M20695)
  • Administering System Center Configuration Manager and Intune (M20696)
  • Planning for and Managing Devices in the Enterprise - Enterprise Mobility Suite and On-Premises Tools (M20398)

Number of Exams

One exam; choose from the following:

  • Exam 70-695: Deploying Windows Desktops and Enterprise Applications
  • Exam 70-696: Administering System Center Configuration Manager and Intune
  • Exam 70-398: Planning for and Managing Devices in the Enterprise

Cost per Exam

$165; exams administered by Pearson VUE.

URL

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/learning/mcse-mobility-certification.aspx

Self-Study Materials

Microsoft maintains a list of exam prep materials, such as courses, practice tests and study guides, on the webpage for each exam.

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 6 – Desktop and Mobility (VCP6-DTM) certification identifies individuals who can deploy and configure Horizon with View in a vSphere virtualized data center, as well as use View and other technologies to implement and manage virtual desktops and applications.

To earn the VCP6-DTM you need to follow one of these four paths:

  • Path 1 (for current VCP6-DT credential holders): Candidates who already possess a valid VCP6-DT (desktop) certification are automatically granted the VCP6-DTM certification.
  • Path 2 (for current VCP credential holders): Candidates who already possess a valid VCP credential need only pass the requisite exam. Training is still recommended but not required.
  • Path 3 (for expired VCP credential holders): Candidates who hold expired VCP certifications must take a training course, pass the vSphere 6 or 6.5 Foundations exam, and pass the VCP6-DTM exam.
  • Path 4 (for non-VCP credential holders): Candidates who are just starting with VCP6-DTM must have six months of experience with vSphere 6 and Horizon, take a training course, pass the vSphere 6 or 6.5 Foundations exam, and pass the VCP6-DTM exam.

VMware certifications expire after two years. To maintain their certifications, credential holders must pass the current exam VCP6-DTM exam or a higher-level exam, such as for the advanced-level VCAP6-Design or VCAP6-Deploy certification.

Certification Name

VMware Certified Professional 6 – Desktop and Mobility (VCP6-DTM)

Prerequisites & Required Courses

Six months of experience with vSphere and Horizon
Take one of the required courses:

  • VMware Horizon 7: Install, Configure, Manage [V7]
  • VMware Horizon 7: Install, Configure, Manage [V7] - On Demand
  • VMware Horizon 7: Troubleshooting and Performance Optimization [V7]
  • Horizon (with View): Install, Configure, Manage [V6]
  • Horizon (with View): Install, Configure, Manage [V6] On Demand
  • Horizon (with View): Install, Configure, Manage [V6.2]
  • Horizon: Design and Deploy [V6]
  • VMware Mirage [V5.0] and Horizon with View [V6.0]: Fast Track

Number of Exams

Two exams:

  • 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)

AND

  • 2V0-651: VMware Certified Professional 6 – Desktop and Mobility Exam (85 questions, 120 minutes, passing score 300)

Cost per Exam

2V0-620: $125
2V0-602: $125
2V0-651: $250
Exams administered by Pearson VUE.

URL

https://mylearn.vmware.com/mgrReg/plan.cfm?plan=64296&ui=www_cert

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.

There are many more mobility certifications that can give job or promotion seekers an advantage in this IT niche.

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 the Oracle Mobile Security Suite 11g Certified Implementation Specialist certification.

Some honorable mentions also go to the Certified Casper certifications by JASF Software, the Mobility certification from NetMotion and the GIAC Mobile Device Security Analyst (GMOB), a foundation-level cert from SANS GIAC. 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.