Want to become a VMware vExpert?By Matt Vandenbeld
Late last week, VMware announced applications are now available for the 2013 vExpert designation. I submitted my application a few days ago, and I know there are many other TrainSignal fans who did as well. But, if you’re not familiar with what being a vExpert entails, let me give you the rundown.
A vExpert, in the simplest of terms, is an active member of the VMware community who imparts his/her advanced knowledge on others. VMware is exceptional at developing community; it’s really the industry standard in this regard. The vExpert program is a way of recognizing people who participate in the community and increase awareness of VMware products and uses. It’s quite genius really; it encourages people to market VMware and grow its ecosystems.
So how does one qualify to be a vExpert? There are a few different tracks to achieve the vExpert designation, all with their own requirements. The general theme is to be a vocal advocate of VMware products and its use cases. While there is no certification requirement to become a vExpert, certification will assist. Many current members are VCAPs and VCDXs.
The different tracks to apply for:
- Evangelist Path: This path includes bloggers, authors, speakers, etc. who demonstrate passion and knowledge in the public forums.
- Customer Path: This path is for champions within organizations who helped VMware garner recognition within a company. This also includes persons who worked with VMware on customer success stories.
- Partner Path: This path is for employees of VMware partners who are active with certifications and are committed to imparting their technical knowledge to their customers. This can take many forms and requires a VMware employee reference.
The application process consists of picking your path and then giving references pertaining to the requirements of your track. This includes links to blog posts, your VMware forum name, other forum names, speaking engagements, etc. VMware will review the applications to decide whom is worthy of the vExpert designation. There is no cap on the number; I believe the directory currently holds around 404 names, and I fully expect that number to grow.
So why would anyone want to be a vExpert? For starters, you get recognition in the industry, the ability to use the vExpert logos and a listing in the vExpert directory. It’s a nice way to differentiate yourself. You also get invited to a party at VMworld and PEX, which is usually a joint party with the VCDXs – and c’mon, who doesn’t like a party? There is also a special forum on the VMware site where vExperts can communicate and gain access to high-end VMware resources. To me, though, the best reward is access to VMware beta programs. You get to try out all the new fancy stuff in the pipe.
Overall, the vExpert program is a fantastic way to reward and encourage community participation. It communicates to the consumer that vExperts are passionate and knowledgeable about VMware—that they have invested significant time to better themselves and demonstrate their knowledge to others. These are upstanding members of the VMware community, and it’s nice that they get something to show for it.
About the Author
Matt Vandenbeld is VCDX-DCV #107 and a vExpert, currently employed at Long View Systems in Calgary, Alberta, Canada as a Technical Architect specializing in virtual infrastructures. He holds numerous industry certs, RHCSA, MCSE, VCP, VTSP, VCAP-DCA/DCD, and many others. He's been in the IT industry for over 10 years, specializing in virtualization for the last six. Cloud and virtualization is my passion. I know, Im a geek. Or is it a vGeek? I love to learn and talk about any topic, especially virtualization!
Author's Website: http://www.cloudmatt.com/