Salesforce Certification: My Journey

With 3 Salesforce Certifications under my belt (and one earned today!), I feel that it’s time for me to share my experiences and paths to this accomplishment. For many, the exam seems daunting and they shy away from it.  Please read on and check out the resources below to find your path to certification.

ADMINISTRATOR: About 9 months after being introduced to Salesforce, I realized that career potential and decided to actively pursue one. I quickly realized that the first step was to become certified. In preparation, I attended the ADM 201 which was a disappointment to me. There wasn’t much that I learned and with the high price, I didn’t feel that the class was worth it. Also, it doesn’t cover all the topics you need for the exam

At the conclusion of the week-long course, I spent 2 weeks reviewing it and the other topics listed in the study guide. I then felt confident to take the exam…..and passed!

DEVELOPER: About 1.5 years later, I started preparing for the Dev 401 exam. It is very similar to the Admin exam so in retrospect I would recommend you do it immediately after. This time, I watched a recorded Salesforce course and reviewed the necessary information. I looked over the study guide, felt that I scored high enough and went for it….and passed!

**Tip: Use the study guide as a…guide. Gauge your knowledge of each topic and give yourself a rating. Once you score over 85% – 90%, you should have sufficient knowledge to pass the test.

ADVANCED ADMINISTRATOR: For this exam, I followed David Liu‘s recommendation. I went though the study guide topic by topic and read the relevant Salesforce documentation on it. Then, I rated my knowledge on each topic. My last step was to go through the flashcards. All this done, I felt ready to take the exam…and passed!

So yes, with lots of studying and prepping, I passed these 3 exams on the first try.

You can do it too!

Tip #1: Review the study guide. I can’t stress it enough. It outlines exactly what you need to know and what percentage of the exam it covers. Adjust your studying accordingly.

Tip #2: Watch videos on topics you’re not familiar with. If you don’t have hands-on experience with a specific feature, it is sometime hard to visualize what you read on it.

Tip #3: Use flashcards and mock exams. While they may not accurately reflect the exams, they will help you think in a question/answer format and probe into areas you may have overlooked.

———–

Resources

Udacity: Intro to Point & Click App Development: Great place to get hands on overview of many Salesforce functions.

Trailhead: Another great place to get aquainted with Salesforce

SFDC99: Guide to Passing all Salesforce Certifications

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