Filed under: Administration March 25, 2010

A training course is probably the quickest way to prepare for the system administrator exam. Given the expense, though, many people have asked me if there are home study courses. I do not know of any. But rather than leave you with nothing, I put together some thoughts on how I would self study in this video blog.

The video presentation starts with personal goal setting to stay motivated. It then discusses options for an overview of the entire CRM tools suite. Next, it covers a couple of resources. Finally, study aids and tools are discussed.

I hope you find it helpful, but please take this is as self study advice and not a guarantee of success.

P.S. The documentation portion of online help is available in PDF form. The hyperlinking of the online help can be distracting when studying. The PDF version of the online help is closer to step by step. It is the closest to a textbook or brain dump as I have seen. It is 3000 pages so let the study guide drive the topics to investigate.

Please note the PDF only includes the documentation portion of online help. It does not have Solutions or Knowledge articles.

To get to the PDF, log into an org and go to Help & Training. The title is, “How to be Successful with Salesforce,” but it is actually accessed under various names. If you have the old version of Help, it will be under the Help tab and is called, “Printable User Guide (25MB).” In the new Help system, it is in the Documentation widget and called, “Downloadable User Guide.” Be sure to get the new version for each new release of Salesforce.

  1. Pingback: Certification Exam Notes « Vision Into Reality

  2. Jim says:

    Flash Cards… great idea. Much obliged, Parner.

  3. adm 201 exam says:

    Great Video! I too certainly believe it is possible to dominate the exam without having to go through the expensive training class.

  4. ashley says:

    Thank You! I hope you will keep this blog up for new comers like myself. Much appreciated!

  5. Hayata says:

    Salesforce is offering 2 hour Administrator, Sales Cloud Consultant, and Service Cloud Consultant certification prep classes at the beginning of Dreamforce ’11 for $99 each. See

  6. srujana vakiti says:

    Hi hayata
    I am srujana from India.
    my goal is to get the admin and developer certifications
    I need the certification exam papers or exercises for sales force admin 201 and developer 401 certificates please can you provide for me.thanks in advance

  7. rreeves says:

    Hi Hayata,

    I am new to all this. I would like to know if I can use the Enterprise Edition/Unlimited Edition 30-day free trial & the User Guide to self-study for SalesForce Administration.Is it enough along with the downloadable “Help” PDF file to prepare for the ADM-201 exam? .Since you got to give the exam every time there is a new release, does that make your certification from previous exam invalid?
    Thank you.

    • Hayata says:

      Sign up for the Developer Edition which will have almost every feature and will not expire. See this video on how I think you should study for the certification: You do have to pass each release exam to keep your certification valid. The release exams are much shorter than the full exams, so you don’t have to study nearly as much.

    • Raymond says:

      hey reeves where did u get the Help downloadable pdf file in salesforce?
      i tried searching but could not find it.
      can you please tell me where did u find it.
      i am planning to take up Salesforce admin 201 exam.
      many thanks

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