Fresh Off the Exam: Service Cloud Certification Advice From a Salesforce Expert

Q&A With 10K Expert, Jackie Teravainen

Promoting a culture of learning is a priority for 10K. Not only is ongoing education a core pillar of successful COEs, it’s also essential in getting the most out of Salesforce. Upskilling with new certifications, especially in high-demand areas, can advance a Salesforce expert’s career and provide a competitive edge. 

That Trailblazer attitude is also part of what makes the Salesforce ecosystem so special. Its community members are committed to driving the ecosystem forward through ongoing education and innovation. 

That said, despite the trying circumstances of the pandemic, some of the 10K Expert Community is in the process of completing certification exams and are eager to share their insight. For first-hand advice from our experts fresh off the exam, stay tuned to our blog.  

Q: Which tools or resources did you use to prepare for your certification exam and would you recommend them?

I almost exclusively used the Focus On Force study guide and practice exams to fill my knowledge gaps in areas where I was less familiar. I’d also recommend the Service Cloud Specialist Superbadge on Trailhead, as it offers hands-on learning modules and practical use cases. I retain information much better by actually “doing” versus memorizing, so I would recommend both of these resources to adequately prepare.

Q: Why Service Cloud? Was there a specific reason you chose this certification?

I had done a number of Service Cloud implementations, so it felt like a natural step forward to fill any knowledge gaps within that service offering and then make it official with a certification. I also think that Service Cloud is packed with ROI for the customer and I’ve noticed it gaining more traction in recent years.

Q: Was the Service Cloud exam what you envisioned it would be or were there any curveballs?

I had taken the practice exams to the point where I was getting 100%, so I was feeling good. But in the real exam, it seemed like 50% of the questions were curveballs. I was confident that I knew the material but then was shocked by how confusing some of the answer choices were. Having hands-on experience prior to taking the exam helped with this but nothing can really prepare you for trick questions. It just shows how important it is to thoroughly know the technicalities. 

Q: If you’ve completed a certification exam before, did you notice or feel COVID had any impact on the process?

If anything, it made it a lot easier to take the online proctored exam. They loosened the technical requirements, such as needing to use an external webcam, which was helpful. I personally prefer the traditional in-person exam to minimize distractors, however, I didn’t want to sit for an exam with a mask on or be wondering if someone around me was sick. The online exam was very convenient so having the option was nice. 

Q: Do you have any plans in-store with your new certification? 

I have several customers using Service Cloud, so knowing more of the advanced service offerings gives me more confidence to make recommendations and design solutions that can take them to the next level. I look forward to more Service Cloud projects where I can apply my knowledge and watch the product’s capabilities to transform customer service centers.

Looking for more resources to elevate your Salesforce learning and development? Check out our “Ask The Expert” webinar with Trailhead SVP Amy Regan Morehouse.