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MEF-SDWAN Beta Exam Opportunity

MEF is introducing a MEF-SDWAN Professional Certification exam and inviting approximately 200 of the world's best and brightest SD-WAN subject matter experts to participate in an upcoming "Beta" exam commencing in October 2019. This professional certification is the industry's only exam that validates knowledge, skills, and abilities in the domains of SD-WAN based on the MEF SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services (MEF 70) standard as well as other fundamentals and characteristics of SD-WAN solutions.  This exam is targeted at technically-oriented SD-WAN professionals ranging from pre-sales to network/service engineering and operational personnel in the service provider, vendor, and enterprise communities.

Professionals participating in the MEF-SDWAN Beta exam will:

  • Be among an elite first group of MEF-SDWAN certified professionals
  • Assess first hand the applicability of this exam for broader adoption in your organization
  • Provide valuable input to MEF towards the development of the final exam form

Exam cost: US$200, versus the production projected list price of US$420

Pre-register to reserve a seat for the Beta at the following location:  Beta Pre-Registration and the SD-WAN Beta has closed.

Market Overview

The SD-WAN market is one of the hottest in the communications industry, with tens of billions of dollars in revenue at stake throughout the next 5 years. IDC estimates that the global SD-WAN infrastructure market (excluding managed services) will reach $US 5.3 billion by 2023 due to strong enterprise demand and the embrace of SD-WAN by leading service providers seeking to provide enterprises with dynamic management of hybrid WAN connections with guaranteed QoS on a per-application basis. The US managed SD-WAN services market alone is projected to reach $US 4.5 billion by 2023, according to Vertical Systems Group.

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Today’s SD-WAN market shares similarities to the early days of the Carrier Ethernet market before standardization and services, technology, and professional certification took hold. There is lot of excitement about performance/price advantages, greater flexibility, etc., but there is also a huge need for education and alignment on terminology to help increase market efficiencies. Having skilled professionals who are well-versed in the emerging common language for SD-WAN will be key to enabling ecosystem stakeholders to capitalize on market opportunities.

MEF SD-WAN Standardization – Unleashing Market Growth & New Hybrid Networking Solutions

In July 2019, MEF published the industry’s first global standard defining an SD-WAN service and its service attributes to help accelerate SD-WAN market growth and facilitate creation of powerful new MEF 3.0 hybrid networking solutions for digital transformation. Combining standardized SD-WAN services with dynamic high-speed underlay connectivity services – including Carrier Ethernet, Optical Transport, and IP – will enable service providers to offer networking solutions with unprecedented user- and application-directed control over network resources and service capabilities.

MEF’s SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services (MEF 70) standard describes requirements for an application-aware, over-the-top WAN connectivity service that uses policies to determine how application flows are directed over multiple underlay networks irrespective of the underlay technologies or service providers who deliver them.

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MEF 70, among other things, defines:

  • Service attributes that describe the externally visible behavior of an SD-WAN service as experienced by the subscriber.
  • Rules associated with how traffic is handled.
  • Key technical concepts and definitions like an SD-WAN UNI, the SD-WAN Edge, SD-WAN Tunnel Virtual Connections, SD-WAN Virtual Connection End Points, and Underlay Connectivity Services.

Key benefits of standardization include:

  • Enabling a wide range of ecosystem stakeholders to use the same terminology when buying, selling, assessing, deploying, and delivering SD-WAN services. This helps reduce confusion about service components, core capabilities, and related concepts, thus saving valuable time given the scarce availability of skilled personnel.
  • Making it easier to interface policy with intelligent underlay connectivity services to provide a better end-to-end application experience with guaranteed service resiliency.
  • Facilitating inclusion of SD-WAN services in standardized LSO architectures, thereby advancing efforts to orchestrate MEF 3.0 SD-WAN services across automated networks.
  • Paving the way for creation and implementation of certified MEF 3.0 SD-WAN services, which will give users confidence that a service meets a fundamental set of requirements.

Topic Areas Covered in the MEF-SDWAN Exam

  • Assessing, planning and designing:  scenario’s of size and scale, implementations, applications, strategy, and business requirements.

  • Implementation:  MEF 70 related to business requirements, application flow, policy, underlay services, characteristics, and migration strategy.

  • Lifecycle Service Orchestration: service impacting issues, diagnostics, performance metrics, and troubleshooting.

  • Components and Features: fundamentals and characteristics of SD-WAN solutions, service components, and service attributes.

Eligibility & Requirements

The following are the suggested minimum qualified candidate requirements suitable for the MEF-SDWAN Beta exam: 

  • Minimum of 2 years experience.
  • Basic understanding of L2 switching and L3 routing and commonly implemented protocols (BGP, UDP, etc.).
  • Currently hold a role in the deployment, design, maintenance ,and troubleshooting networks in a traditional WAN environment including, but not limited to: MPLS, Ethernet, mobile technologies, etc.

Target Roles

  • Network Engineer who can demonstrate their ability to manage SD-WAN systems/ Operation Engineers
  • System Engineers (e.g., Application Engineers etc.)
  • Network Engineer Managers
  • Network Consulting Engineers
  • Product Developers
  • Enterprise Solution Designers
  • Sales Engineers
  • Network Architects
  • Product Support and IT Directors

Milestones Dates

  • Beta pre-registration: open, with deadline of October 4, 2019
  • Exam blueprint V1.0 availability:  September 15, 2019 
  • Beta Registration Opened:  October 7th/8th 2019 (Pre-registrants - please check your emails!)
  • Beta exam availability:  Opens October 17 2019
  • Beta Exam Schedule Deadline: >> November 7th, 10PM Pacific Time <<  (old deadline November 4th)
  • Beta score availability:  Mid-December 2019
  • Released exam availability:  January 1, 2020

Registration, Cost and Other Information

For information about other MEF professional certifications, please click here.

Key Contacts

Primary MEF Contact for MEF Professional Certification Program

Certification Committee Co-Chairs