Service Cloud Consultant Certification: Tips & Resources

I recently took the Service Cloud Consultant exam and passed! In this post, I’ll cover:

  • Exam background: purpose, format & structure
  • Resources to help you pass your certification exam
  • Personal tips and experiences 

As always, I hope this will help you with your own learning journey! With that said, let’s begin!

About the Exam

Purpose

The Service Cloud Consultant Certification seeks to test a candidate’s ability to:

...successfully design and implement Service Cloud solutions that meet customer business requirements, are maintainable and scalable, and contribute to long-term customer success

There is a focus on understanding Service Cloud’s breadth. However, it is not just about ‘knowing’ features. As a Consultant level exam, you need to understand their use cases, pros and cons. With this understanding, you can then relate solutions to business challenges. For example, if your team are reporting that the Case Closure process is slow and entails many repetitive steps, you may consider using a Macro.

Alongside this, you will also need to understand the key parts of a consultative Service Cloud engagement. For example:

  • Key Business terminology for contact centres
  • Stages of a project and key activities within each phase (i.e. Plan, Requirements Analysis, Design, Build, Test, Document etc)

By studying for this Certification, you will be better equipped to optimise Service Cloud for your business. 

Exam Format

At the time of writing (Spring ’22 Exam release) the Service Cloud Consultant Exam consists of:

  • 60 multi-choice questions. There can also be 5 additional unscored questions
  • Duration: 105 minutes
  • Pass Mark: 67%
  • Registration Fee: USD $200. Retake fee of USD $100
  • Closed book exam
Important: You must be a Salesforce Certified Administrator to take this certification. 

Exam Structure

The exam is broken up into a number of topics:

Spring 22 Service Cloud Consultant Exam Structure

As always, it is highly recommended you see the Exam Guide. However, please note this exam consists of 9 areas. The weighting of each theme is fairly equal. 

Resources 📚

The Service Cloud Consultant Certification is one of the oldest Salesforce Certifications available. As such, there are plenty of resources. There is a lot of outdated content. You need to select up to date resources which suit your learning needs. Looking for some inspiration? Check out the below!

Exam Guide

Would you go on a treasure hunt without a map? Probably not. Why would you when taking an exam! 

Always start with the Exam Guide. This is your proverbial map, helping you find your path. It covers the syllabus, objectives, and officially recommended resources and much more. It will also help you determine if this is the right exam for you.  

Bear in mind that the exams are updated to reflect the latest and greatest functionality. Be sure to review the current exam guide when preparing!

treasure map, treasure hunt, pirate treasure-153425.jpg

Trailhead

Trailhead has a carefully curated Trailmix for the exam: Prepare for Your Salesforce Service Cloud Consultant Credential. It contains many useful resources, all of which are free. If you follow the Trailmix, you will complete the Service Cloud Specialist Superbadge too!

I found this a valuable learning experience and would recommend it to anyone wanting to learn more about Service Cloud or preparing for the exam! Within this, you’ll have to practically apply many of the topics covered in the exam. As with all things Salesforce, hands-on experience is always helpful.  

Blogs

Blogs are always a treasure trove of resources. Here are the main ones I used when preparing for this exam:
  • Apex Hours: Apex Hours ran a course on Service Cloud in early 2022. This is a fantastic free resource for anyone wanting to learn Service Cloud. What’s more, you can pick and choose what topics you want to watch as it is all hosted on YouTube. Click here
  • Automation Champion: A great blog, full of useful content and information. Training options are also available which I would highly recommend! Click here
  • Salesforce Ben: Always full of insight and information. Very helpful for orientating yourself with Service Cloud products/features, as well as learning the latest and greatest features. Click here

Focus on Force

Focus on Force is a great resource if you are preparing for Certifications. You can choose from:

  • Clear and concise exam guides: helping you to learn
  • Carefully curated practice exams with feedback/resources

At the time of writing, the exam guide and practice exams cost USD $19 each. This gives you access for 1 year. If you are planning taking the exam, I would seriously encourage you to purchase these resources. They are clear, concise and most importantly, carefully maintained and kept up to date. Whilst there are ‘free’ quizzes online, you do not want to base your preparation on this. The Salesforce platform is continually changing and learning from obsolete (or inaccurate) resources will almost certainly harm your preparation. 

Click here for info on Focus on Force courses

Other Resources Available

There are of course other resources available. Here are some others you may want to consider: 
  • Certification Days: Free one-day training session, provided by Salesforce (or an official training partner). A fantastic resource to focus on key points relevant to the certification. I attended one of these long-before taking this exam. It is a very helpful resource. Click here  
  • Official Course: Salesforce offers two official (paid) courses on Service Cloud. I have not attended these so cannot comment too much. However, when I took the Admin Course (about 12 years ago!) I found it invaluable. If you have the time/budget, be sure to check these out:
  • Online training: If you have a tight budget, or prefer self-paced/on-demand learning, be sure to check out sites such as Udemy, Pluralsight, Skillshare, etc. On these platforms, you are likely to find content which is helpful towards your certification goals. 

Tips & Experiences

From my experience of the exam, here are a few tips/experiences to bear in mind.

Study time

Study regularly and often. There is a lot to learn and I would not suggest cramming for this exam. I already had some prior knowledge and experience with Service Cloud. However, I took ~1 month to complete my preparation. Remember, it is not a race. You are developing a skill. Give yourself the time you need. 

For me, this meant allocating time each day (early morning and/or evening) to study. Keep your goal in mind; it will help you stay focused. 

study, books, computer-7332172.jpg

Practice Questions

Practice makes perfect. Focus on Force practice exams are always a great resource, where available. Towards the end of my preparation, I used them to test my knowledge and identify areas for improvement. Highly recommended. 

Exam: Breadth & Depth

The exam tests your breadth and depth of knowledge (i.e. each section is fairly evenly weighted). Be sure to study each section carefully. 

I found there was ample time to complete the exam itself. However, be sure to read each question carefully. Some questions had multiple, plausible options. Reviewing the question more carefully signposted why an initially viable option, may not be the ‘best’ answer to the challenge at hand. This is particularly true when considering productivity options. 

Understand your Audience

This is a Consultant certification. As such, Salesforce will test your industry knowledge. 

It is always tempting to focus on the technology. That said, don’t forget the purpose of the technology is to  solve real-world business challenges. As you study, focus on use cases. Read or watch case studies. Download whitepapers, etc. All these things will not only help with the exam, but will prepare you to apply those skills in the real-world.

Enjoy

Exams can be daunting. Do not be put off learning because of them. If you have doubts, revisit what you have learned. Reflect on your progress. If something hasn’t quite clicked yet, try looking at it a different way. Perhaps read a different source, watch a video, talk to a friend, etc. You will get there and don’t forget to enjoy the journey along the way!

Celebrate!

Once you’ve passed the exam, be sure to celebrate your achievement! If this blog has helped you in any way, please do feel free to @ mention on LinkedIn and Twitter. It would be great to celebrate with you!

However, if you do not succeed first time, do not worry. It is all part of the learning process. Do not give up; refocus. Keep going and you will succeed 👍

Summary

Service Cloud is a key cloud within Salesforce’s product suite. The certification covers a wide array of topics reflecting this. There is a lot to learn, but it is well worth the effort. Carefully consider the resources you want to use. Give yourself the time needed to succeed. Never give up; keep trying and be sure to celebrate your success!

Bonus Penguin Fact

Now for some Penguin news🐧!

Humboldt Penguins (Spheniscus humboldti) are native to the coasts of Chile and Peru. According to the IUCN (The International Union for Conservation and Nature) Red List of Threatened Species, their status is ‘Vulnerable’. As such, conservation efforts are essential. 

A few weeks ago, Chester Zoo celebrated the arrival of 9 Penguin chicks! Check out this video for more info, as well as to learn more about their fruity names!

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