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2021: The year of Acquia certification

Our team shares about the process of getting their Acquia qualifications and the value it brings to both their careers and our clients.

It’s been calculated that the Drupal content management system is now at the heart of around 13% of the world’s top 10,000 websites, a number only set to increase as the user base expands by well over a million per quarter. 

TPXimpact boasts one of the largest and most experienced Drupal teams in the UK. Through that time, we’ve had a long standing partnership with Acquia – the managed hosting turned DXP provider – founded by the Drupal creator himself, Dries Buytaert

Our team are regular contributors to the Drupal community and continuously look to drive best practice and standards in the work we do for our clients. This summer 2021, we sought to build on this by deepening and broadening our team’s knowledge of the Acquia product suite. 

We’re proud to say that over two months, our Drupal team has completed 15 Acquia certifications, passing with flying colours across the board. We plan to continue to invest in the team with many more booked certifications planned over the coming weeks and months. 

To give you a little insight into how it’s going, we asked the team to tell us about the process of getting the qualifications, the dedication, the sacrifice and the value it brings to both their careers and our clients…

Acquia Certified Developer – Drupal 9

Developers wanting this qualification will have to take a 90-minute exam and answer 60 questions to prove their knowledge of fundamental web concepts, site building, theming front end development and coding back end development. 

Going into this process, an understanding of Drupal 9’s basic architecture is a must, of course, as is an ability to develop or customise existing themes using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript/JQuery. 

Preparing for the exam, candidates can view Drupal’s free preparatory courses on Acquia Academy for free or buy slots at regular instructor-led public training sessions. Private training sessions are also available for groups of up to ten people, while practical experience in the form of at least two hands-on projects is recommended before taking the exam.

Senior Developer Alastair Moore sees his role at TPXimpact as building great solutions for clients. He’s worked with Drupal, 6, 7, 8 and 9 for 12 years and, even through his extensive experience, he found the free online courses incredibly useful in advance of his certification. 

“This certification mainly shows a potential client that I do have knowledge about Drupal, rather than being reliant on my saying so,” says Alastair. “I think it’ll give them the confidence that they’ll be working with an experienced, qualified and knowledgeable development team and after getting 85%, I’d like to study for the back end and front end developer certificates as well. I’m aiming to get all three and become a Drupal Grand Master!”

Acquia Certified Front End Specialist – Drupal 9

The Acquia Certified Front end Specialist (D9) exam tests a developer’s skills and knowledge during a 90-minute exam comprising 60 questions. Qualifications show the developer’s ability to design, develop and deploy Drupal 9-based solutions focusing on the front end, as well as implement new Drupal 9 themes and custom use existing ones.

Cedric Hillion (cedrichillion) says that his work at TPXimpact is, “to focus on building reliable, efficient and intelligent solutions.” Having already completed the Developer certification, Cedric jumped straight into the Certified Front End Specialist exam saying “As a sort of milestone, it gives me personal recognition for what I’ve accomplished both at work and in my personal time.”

Whilst studying for the exam, Cedric says he, “mostly picked the subjects I was feeling less comfortable using online resources from Acquia and While I’m familiar with the system, it was good to go through some of the aspects of Drupal I was less comfortable with. That’s my suggestion for anyone doing the same thing – take your time and focus on the topics that you need to refresh your knowledge on.”

Acquia Certified Site Studio 6 Site Builder

On to one of the slightly newer certifications, the Acquia Certified Site Studio 6 Site Builder. A one hour, 40 question exam which sets out to test your ability to design, implement and maintain a Site Studio DX8 based Drupal website. Testing a candidate’s ability to understand Site Studio’s functionality, along with their ability to install and configure it into a new or existing website.

Thanks to his eight years of experience, TPXimpact Drupal developer, Jack Holding (jholding), found the learning process, “fairly straightforward thanks to the Acquia Academy portal guides. The video guides for the Site Studio product were particularly helpful,” he notes, “by being nicely broken down and easy to follow.”

When asked how he plans to put his new certification to use “I think it’s good to test yourself and validate where your strengths and weaknesses are. Taking the exam helped me realise the areas I might want to work on next, while certifications help build my credibility as a Drupal developer and add a degree of confidence that our team can demonstrate a high level of dedication to both Drupal and our technology partner, Acquia.”

As an agency, TPXimpact is committed to providing regular opportunities for our team to access training. For Alastair, Cedric and Jack, taking Acquia exams and gaining fresh qualifications have been a chance for them to brush up on their old skills as well as learn new ones, all the while adding to the expanding knowledge and skill pools within TPXimpact. 

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