announced the Google Apps Certification Program today. The program will certify IT professionals who have demonstrated the ability to sell, deploy, develop and support Google Apps. The first certification is the Goolge Apps Certified Deployment Specialist, "which certifies IT professionals who have demonstrated the fundamental knowledge and skills required to migrate to, configure, and deploy Google Apps."Google
The certification is completely Web-based. Anyone with a browser can take the online exam. According to the announcement, "It is available in English now, and will soon be available in additional languages." It costs $100. The suggested prerequisites are:
Before taking the exam, it is recommended that a candidate have a minimum of 3-6 years of professional IT experience, and complete at least 3 Google Apps for Business deployments. The deployments should require some technical complexity and significant data integration and migration work. You should be experienced with the use of Google Apps Directory Sync and server side migration tools, such as Google Apps Migration for Microsoft Exchange.
As Google continues to compete with Microsoft in the enterprise, a certification program is a logical step for helping organizations find qualified consultants. It already offers a developer certification program.
Although certification is frequently criticized within the IT world, those that receive certifications typically have an easier time finding work. Further, it helps decision makers evaluate candidates.