If you’re planning a career as an enterprise architect (EA), certifications are a great way to validate your EA skills. As an EA, you’ll be responsible for developing the IT strategy for a business that keeps business goals in line with IT goals. Companies rely heavily on technology, so IT is now a foundational part of any strong business strategy. These certifications test your skills, knowledge and abilities working with EA frameworks, tools, software and best practices.
Whether you want to focus on cloud, applications, software or other areas of enterprise architecture, one or more of these 12 certifications will help strengthen your resume.
Top 12 enterprise architecture certifications
- AWS Certified Solution Architect
- Axelos ITIL Master certification
- CISSP Information Systems Security Architecture Professional (CISSIP-ISSAP)
- Dell EMC Proven Professional Cloud architect training and certification
- EC Council Certified Network Defense Architect (CNDA)
- Google Professional Cloud Architect
- Professional Cloud Solutions Architect Certification
- Red Hat Certified Architect
- Salesforce Certified Technical Architect (CTA)
- The Open Group TOGAF 9 Certification
- The Open Group Certified Architect (Open CA)
- Virtualization Council Master Infrastructure Architect certification
AWS Certified Solution Architect
The AWS Certified Solution Architect exam covers building an architectural design solution based off customer or client requirements, delivering best practices for implementation and overseeing the long-term management of an EA project. You’ll need hands-on experience with all computer, networking, storage and database AWS services to pass the exam. You won’t have to take a course to pass the exam, but Amazon recommends at least six months to two years of hands-on experience using AWS before you attempt the exam. You can also download practice exams and training materials directly from Amazon to help you prepare for the exam.
Cost: $100 for cloud practitioner, $150 for associate-level and $300 for professional-level exams
Axelos ITIL Master certification
ITIL is a popular IT management framework used by enterprise architects to help manage service processes. If you work in an ITSM environment with the ITIL framework, the Axelos ITIL Master certification is useful for demonstrating your aptitude in service management. To qualify for the ITIL Master, you need at least five years of experience in IT service management in a leadership, managerial or higher management advisory role. You’ll also need to earn the ITIL Expert certification before you can move onto the ITIL Master exam.
Cost: Exam fees vary by vendor
CISSP Information Systems Security Architecture Professional (CISSIP-ISSAP)
The CISSIP-ISSAP certification is designed for professionals with a Certified Information Systems Security Professionals (CISSIP) certification who want to add a concentration in architecture. You’ll need to have your CISSP certification in addition to two years of experience working with one or more domains in the CISSP-ISSAP common body of knowledge (CBK). The exam covers identity and access management architecture, security operations architecture, infrastructure security, governance, compliance, risk management, security architecture modeling and application security.
Cost: $699 for the exam and a $35 annual maintenance fee
Dell EMC Proven Professional Cloud Architect training and certification
Dell EMC recently rolled all certifications under one master certification, the Dell EMC Proven Professional, but you can choose from a long list of individual courses that are specific to your enterprise architecture career. The EMC Proven Professional Cloud Architect Specialist (DECE-CA) certification course covers gathering proper requirements and designing cloud services in an ITaaS environment. You’ll also get a chance to practice your skills through a collaborative cloud services design project. To earn this certification, you first have to pass one of five associate level exams and earn your cloud architect specialist certification.
Cost: Courses and exams start at $900; you can purchase a single exam voucher without the course, but fees vary depending on the testing center.
EC Council Certified Network Defense Architect (CNDA)
The Certified Network Defense Architect (CNDA) certification from EC Council is specifically designed for government and military agencies, with a focus on security and compliance. You’ll need to earn your CEH certification and be employed by a government or military agency or be a contracted employee of the government before you can take the CNDA course. It’s similar to the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) and it’s intended for individuals who are trusted by their employer to “undertake an attempt to penetrate networks and/or computer systems using the same methods as a hacker,” according to the EC Council.
Google Professional Cloud Architect
The Google Professional Cloud Architect certification demonstrates your abilities working with Google Cloud technologies. To earn this certification, you need to know how to design and plan cloud solution architecture for security and compliance, manage cloud infrastructure, analyze and optimize business processes and oversee the implementation of cloud architecture. There are no prerequisites for the exam, but it must be taken in-person at an official testing center location.
Professional Cloud Solutions Architect Certification
Offered by the Cloud Credential Council (CCC), the Professional Cloud Solutions Architect certification is designed for technology, application, system and enterprise architects as well as cloud strategy consultants and senior developers. The certification course covers ITaaS, cloud computing and service management, customer requirements, implementing cloud technology and evaluating cloud solution architecture. There aren’t any requirements to take the exam, but it’s recommended that you earn your Cloud Technology Associate and TOGAF 9 certifications first.
Cost: $499 for the self-study materials and an exam voucher
Red Hat Certified Architect
The Red Hat Certified Architect certification includes the Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE), Red Hat Certified Enterprise Microservices Developer (RHCEMD) and Red Hat Certified JBoss Developer (RHCJD), which is the highest certification tier. To reach each level of certification, you’ll need to pass a handful of certifications on the systems administrator path or developer path. With the number of certification options, you can customize your certification path for your career by focusing on specific skills and technologies. The cost of each course varies depending on the subject matter and your location, but they run anywhere from $1,500 to around $4,000.
Cost: Fees vary depending on the course and location, but you can purchase a year-long learning subscription for either $5,500 or $7,000, depending on how many course credits you want.
Salesforce Certified Technical Architect (CTA)
The Salesforce Certified Technical Architect (CTA) certification demonstrates your knowledge, skills and ability to design and build solutions on the Salesforce platform. You’ll first have to earn your Certified Application Architect or Certified Systems Architect certifications before you can move onto the CTA exam. To earn your Salesforce CTA certification, you’ll also have to pass the Technical Architect Review Board exam. You’ll be provided with hypothetical situations, given customer requirements and then asked to design an architecture solution. You have two hours to prepare and then four hours to present to the judges, including time for breaks.
Cost: $200 per exam and an additional $6,000 to pass the Technical Architect Review Board exam
The Open Group TOGAF 9 Certification
TOGAF is one of the most used frameworks for enterprise architecture, which makes it a useful certification to add to your resume. The TOGAF 9 certification is a globally-recognized and vendor-neutral certification that will demonstrate your skills using the TOGAF framework to implement and manage enterprise technology. It’s offered through The Open Group and there are two levels of certification — the TOGAF 9 Foundation (Level 1) certification and the Level 2 certification, which you can take once you pass the first exam.
Cost: $320 per exam or $495 to take both exams at once
The Open Group Certified Architect (Open CA)
There are three levels of Open CA certification: Certified (Level 1), Master (Level 2) and Distinguished (Level 3). Unlike other certifications, you won’t have to take a course or pass an exam to earn your Open CA certification. Instead, it’s a program that requires applicants to “demonstrate skills and experience against a set of conformance requirements through written applications and peer reviews,” according to The Open Group. You can use the online self-assessment tool to determine your potential qualifications for the first two levels of certification.
Cost: $1,250 with an annual renewal fee of $175 and recertification every three years for $250
Virtualization Council Master Infrastructure Architect certification
The Virtualization Council offers four certifications for popular virtualization products. Although the certifications focus on products from VMWare, Microsoft, Xen and Virtual Iron products, the exams are vendor-neutral. Each exam covers a specific enterprise architecture platform, so you can pick and choose the tools that align best with your career.
Cost: $125 per exam