FileMaker Certified Developers: What it Means for You
News from Santa Clara, California
On April 30, 2014 – FileMaker, Inc. announced the immediate availability of certification testing for the FileMaker Pro 13 platform. This certification is the official credentials offered by FileMaker, Inc. and is the sole requirement to becoming a FileMaker Certified Developer.
“As a developer, certification gives me reason to explore every facet of the platform to the degree that I feel is required of a true FileMaker professional, regardless of my natural exposure to features and functions in the product through development projects for clients. For this same reason, I use certification as a requirement when making hiring decisions for my organization.”
– Cristoffer Ippolite: Owner; iSolutions, Inc.
The FileMaker Certification is a challenging and in-depth two and a half hour test, designed to test one’s skills in not only knowing how to manipulate FileMaker’s feature sets, but to determine if they’re leveraging these features properly. This certification can help determine if a developer possesses the knowledge and skills for developing and deploying custom mobile business or organizational solutions using the FileMaker Pro 13 Platform.
Upon gaining certification, developers have the leveraging force to forge entirely new careers, expand existing careers, and launch new consulting businesses. Having a certified developer on your project is a good indication that your development team is skilled and experienced with that particular version of FileMaker and in turn, they’re more likely to leverage the feature sets best suited to you and your business.
“Certification is now more important than ever. The FileMaker Platform is expanding, and platform-based business continues to grow. Hiring organizations see certification as a clear differentiator and we have seen strong demand for the services of FileMaker certified developers both as in-house developers and as consultants.”
– Ryan Rosenberg: VP of Marketing and Services; FileMaker, Inc.
Only those who pass the exam receive a FileMaker Certified Developer certificate, in addition, only those who pass are authorized to display the FileMaker Certified Developer logo on their business cards, websites, marketing collateral, etc.
There are no prerequisites for the FileMaker 13 Certification exam (nor did the previous version exams have any), FileMaker recommends that test candidates explore the Training Series, covering a comprehensive set of topics with a detailed manual, demo files, exercises and videos. Of course, having technical chops, practical experience and hands on knowledge is a must!
“Certification provides a definite advantage to job candidates at Soliant. It’s not a trivial certification to earn, so it demonstrates to me that someone has achieved mastery of the skills that are essential for creating complex FileMaker solutions.”
– Bob Bowers: CEO; Soliant Consulting
Our policy internally is practice, practice, practice. We believe practice leads to progress, which leads to the path of pursuing perfection. We jump head first into each new version release and explore it’s new feature sets and apply them to our own solution, xBase. Then, of course, we test! Our goal is always to gain the certifications necessary to assure our clients trust in our talents as FileMaker developers and business analysts.
In addition to hands on experience, we gain experience and FileMaker knowledge from other industry resources like FileMaker Pro User’s Group (FMPug), FileMaker Developer Conference (DevCon), FileMaker Product Conference (Prodcon), Pause On Error (Pause [X]), FileMaker Technical Network (Technet), FileMaker Business Alliance (FBA), FM Forums, Geek Outs with other developers, etc.
What This Means for Clients
It doesn’t mean that just because a developer is Certified, that they’re perfect for your needs, or that they can solve every complex problem with FileMaker. Certifications can’t test for analysis skills, problem solving skills, etc. What it can test for is a foundation of knowledge that goes above and beyond what a non-certified developer is likely to have.
On the flip side, it doesn’t mean that every non-certified developer lacks in-depth knowledge and skill of FileMaker, and that they can’t possibly help you or accomplish your needs.
“Certification validates and verifies foundational FileMaker knowledge for our developers, PCI management and PCI clients. Studying for certification allows the typical developer exposure to a broader set of knowledge than they would otherwise realize without it.”
– Keith Larochelle: Co-Owner; Productive Computing, Inc.
Statistically and historically, you are most likely to have your needs met best with a FileMaker Certified Developer who’s hands on with the current versions of FileMaker. as FileMaker’s technology progresses, your developer, their certifications and their skill sets should progress as well. This is the ultimate sign of a long-term mutually beneficial relationship between developer/consultant and client. This may not be the goal for some, but for us, it is.
Our goals are to keep you, as clients, educated to the new feature sets technology brings and to help you leverage it, when right for you, of course. We don’t build ‘slick’ solutions that leverage every feature available, but instead, we build practical and affordable solutions that leverage the features that you actually need.
Our goal hasn’t changed in 14 years. We make you money, we save you money, but we refuse to waste your money. We’ll continue to get our Certifications while we’re sticking to our goals as well :-).