Editor's note: This is one of our most popular posts, so we've updated it with the latest information and resources.

Sometimes a piece of technology seems to be used at every company. Knowing how to use that technology can help a person’s career. It can give a job candidate a distinct advantage when they apply for a position, especially when they can prove their expertise with certifications and additional education.

That’s why people who show mastery of the Salesforce platform are a step ahead of other candidates. Salesforce is used by 99 out of the 100 companies on the Fortune 100, and we help over 150,000 customers connect with their customers. People around the world rely on our platform to keep businesses running, and the Salesforce Administrator role is critical for success.

How does a job hunter or professional know if a Salesforce Admin job is right for them? Read on to learn what they do and how someone can earn this certification.


Salesforce Administrator credentials and certifications

We have created six certifications to help professionals learn and demonstrate their capability with our platform.

  • Salesforce Administrator (also called a Salesforce Admin)

  • App Builder

  • Architect

  • Consultant

  • Developer

  • Specialist

Within those six roles are over two dozen different certifications. The Salesforce Administrator role alone has five credentials:

  • Administrator

  • Advanced Administrator

  • CPQ Specialist

  • Marketing Cloud Administrator

  • Platform App Builder

Becoming a Salesforce Admin can be a valuable long-term career path, or a way to improve the career path you’re already on.

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What does a Salesforce Administrator do?

Salesforce Administrators work with stakeholders to define requirements and to customize the platform. To put it simply: they enable users to get the most out of Salesforce.

A Salesforce Admin best understands how to make the platform work for their company’s unique needs. Some companies may employ many people in this role. A Salesforce Administrator’s colleagues can rely on them to:

  • Maintain the platform

  • Make it as easy as possible for users of any technical level to use Salesforce

  • Stay updated on the platform’s new tools, capabilities, and updates

Think of Salesforce Administrators as your trusted advisors on all things Salesforce. They are a vital bridge between business and technology.

At some companies, these administrator jobs are combined with other roles. However, depending on their needs, some companies hire for this role specifically. Because of our platform’s capabilities, having someone with an admin certification can ensure the company is using the platform to its fullest potential.

Take, for example, your sales team. They might use Sales Cloud to keep track of opportunities and close deals. With the help of a Salesforce Admin, your salespeople can set up personalized dashboards, fields, alerts, and reports to shorten the sales cycle and track every lead in greater detail. This level of organization can lead to greater satisfaction among salespeople and new customers.

And that’s just one department. We have solutions for just about every team in a company, including sales, marketing, customer service, and more. Each department can learn from the Salesforce Admin how to use our platform most effectively.


How can you become a Salesforce Admin?

A Salesforce Admin doesn’t need a technical background. A variety of professionals decide to become admins, from those with in-depth technical knowledge to former school secretaries.

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Before scheduling your exam, we recommend certificate candidates have six months to one year of experience using Salesforce. The Salesforce Certified Administrator exam takes 115–125 hours to prepare for.

Examples of the concepts covered on the certification exam are:

  • Managing users, data, and security

  • Maintaining and customizing Sales Cloud and Service Cloud apps

  • Building reports, dashboards, and workflows

To become a credentialed Salesforce Administrator, you don’t need any other certifications. However, if you choose to become an Advanced Administrator, you’ll need to start with your Administrator Certificate. The Advanced Administrator exam builds on your Salesforce Admin knowledge and deepens it.


How to prep for the Salesforce Administrator certification exam

Future admins can prepare for their credentials in a few ways. One important resource is Trailhead, our fun, free way to learn Salesforce. With Trailhead, you can learn at your own pace, using guided learning paths. Trailhead also has a community of fellow learners, and members are known as Trailblazers. You can join the Trailblazer Community to learn together, get answers, and collaborate.

Administrators can also learn from the Salesforce Admin YouTube channel. The channel has videos that show what the role entails, as well as recorded webinars, educational videos, and more. There are also many other online and offline resources, including blog posts, podcast episodes, events, and webinars.

Trailhead walks you through the courses and steps necessary to learn and study for the certification. Once you’re ready, sign-up for the exam, which is 60 multiple-choice or multiple-select questions and five non-scored questions. Test takers have 105 minutes, or just over an hour and a half, and must score 65% or higher to pass.

After you pass the test, you’re a certified Salesforce administrator, and your career opportunities have expanded. But your learning doesn’t stop there. You must maintain your certification on a specific schedule, or it will expire.

Salesforce Admins do a lot of work to stay current in their knowledge, skills, and abilities with our tools. This is one reason why this certification is well-regarded among recruiters and industry leaders.


The career prospects for a Salesforce Admin

As our Trailblazers continue to grow and impact business, Salesforce Admin jobs will grow, too. In an era of unprecedented technological change, empowering today's workforce with tomorrow's skills is critical. Salesforce Admins are driving industry changes and innovations every day. It’s a career path for people who love to learn and for professionals who enjoy using the latest technology.

Some people who earn their Salesforce Administrator Certificate do so to supplement their current role in a company — and potentially secure a higher salary. Others use it to enrich their resume and find a new position. Many companies in various industries and of different sizes use Salesforce, including retailers, non-profits, financial services, healthcare providers, software companies, and businesses that provide a service. 

Learn more about becoming a certified Salesforce Admin.