I'm looking to take the AWS Solution Architect Associate exam soon. I've been searching online for places where I can actually take a simulated practice project of say cloud migration or something similar, where one can at least have some simulated experience of an AWS project. So that when I go for a job interview, or even prior to that - when employers see my resume, they don't just see all I've done is studied for the certificate, done a few practice hands-on labs and that's it, when most jobs are asking for at least 2 years experience. It's that chicken and egg situation - experience is needed to get a job which gets you the experience. I couldn't really find anything that offers this online, or maybe I wasn't searching with the right keywords. The answer to this question probably is obvious, but I'm new to this domain. I come from a software dev background and at least with software dev you can participate in many open source projects or do your own projects and push them to your Github repo as a portfolio. But is there anything similar you can do for the AWS SA domain to be able to show as a portoflio or evidence of experience prior to applying for your first AWS job?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks.

  • So... What is AWS? – David Oct 8 at 10:34

Use the AWS Free Tier to set up a network of your own. You can get something quite complicated set up before you have to start paying large amounts of money out. From a clients viewpoint, though... I wouldn't want to work with an 'architect' who hadn't even designed a small shed in the real world.

There are many positions out there at a lower level where the qualification would be a great advantage - I don't know of any where you'd get an AWS Architect position without ever being in the firing line in a devops role.

  • Thanks PeteCon. So the takeaway is build your own AWS free tier network and try to make it as complex as possible before you start paying. That would be at least some experience from your own accord, which could help in your resume. – Hazzaldo Oct 6 at 18:10
  • Btw, I can't upvote because of lack of reputation. Thanks again. – Hazzaldo Oct 6 at 19:22

If people are looking for commercial experience, and you're not currently getting any, you may have to accept the reality that you're going to have to take a more junior role for a period of time so you can build up the CV - alternatively, maybe look for a role that combines experience you do have with work in AWS that you don't. Many recruiters struggle to hire the candidate who's a perfect fit (particularly in Solution Architecture - I speak from personal experience), so are often willing to compromise and say "We'll have the guy who's brilliant at X, but not so knowledgeable at Y, as we can make that work with the team we have".

The other thing you could consider is doing your own personal projects in your own time. There's a limit to how much of that you can put on your CV, but it's definitely something you can share at interview (and would definitely help in the kind of vacancy I described above, since it shows a willingness to learn new skills). How about opening your own AWS account and building some prototype stuff yourself?

  • Thanks David. Interesting suggestions. The AWS Solution Architect course I'm doing right now does include practise labs, which means we have to have accounts setup with AWS and configure services as a practise. Well I think as per the other suggestion from PeteCon and your suggestion, looks like I have to setup my own simulated AWS environment and have that on my resume and just hope for the best that someone will allow me a foot in the door or at least for a more junior but progressive role. Many thanks. – Hazzaldo Oct 6 at 18:24
  • P.s. I would upvote your suggestion but I don't have enough reputation to do that. – Hazzaldo Oct 6 at 18:26

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