VMware certifications, virtualization skills get a boost from pandemic

Demand for virtualization skills rises as pandemic pushes more enterprise functions to cloud. IT pros are cashing in with or without certs, for now.

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CEO Yves Sandfort is bullish on certifications. His company, Comdivision Consulting, uses VMware's NSX network virtualization and security platform on its own network and implements NSX for its clients. He not only encourages all employees to get VMware certs, but he also earned his own VCDX-NV, the Ph.D. of VMware certifications, in April.

"We see a constant demand [for networking skills]. Most of our people were certified on NSX-V and have in the last 12 months also recertified on NSX-T as we see constant, growing need for highly qualified resources," Sandfort says. "For me, certification is one level to prove my skillset and experience with the product."

The company pays for employees' training and certification time. "In our group, the majority have at least two to four VCAPs. Even some back-office people have VCP-level certifications as they wanted to prove they can do it, which helps them in daily customer work, as well."

The COVID-19 pandemic and its workplace disruptions have reinforced the importance of virtualization – including server, storage and network virtualization – to reduce IT expenses and increase IT agility. It has also revitalized the role of networking professionals with VMware experience and certifications.

VMware has responded with stepped-up remote testing and acknowledgement of the need for more role-based, administrator-type certifications rather than product-focused certs. But as demand appears to be outpacing the number of cert-holders, companies are now paying top dollar for VMware skills with or without certifications.

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