We have put together a little FAQ for the RHEL8 certification changes.
In short: When we launched RHCE twenty years ago Linux was mostly used as a web, file or print server and our RHCE exam reflected that. The world has changed quite a bit and now Automation is a far more important skill senior admins need in order to be successful.
To keep RHCE relevant we will include automation inthe RHCE exam (shell scripting and Ansible) This exam will get a new number to reflect the changes. EX294, same thing for the System Administration III course. (will be RH294).
We are not changing the policies on how to keep RHCE current: Three years after you passed the last exam. This could be EX294 or any other exam that counts towards RHCA. Your verification page shows the versions of the products used.
A lot of the content in RH294 will be the same as the current DO407. We are also working on a new Ansible best practices class that will also get it's own certification exam.
This course and exam will be included in RHLS. So in your case it would probably make sense to renew your RHCE with that exam and gain a cert towards RHCA at the same time.
More details will be announced during Summit. If you come to Boston, stop by at our booth and join us during the RHCP reception.