Skill up and stand out, with new role-based training and certification!
Posted 24 Sep 2018 by Alex Payne (Director of Global Customer Learning, Microsoft)
These days, IT teams are looking to fill roles with professionals who have the skills to work across multiple platforms with rapidly changing tools and technology. So, at Microsoft, we’re evolving our training and certifications to support you as you skill up and certify to fill those roles. To that end, we made some exciting announcements at Ignite, including our new learning experience, called Microsoft Learn, plus fresh online and instructor-led training, and a full set of new role-based certifications—with more to come.
If you’re wondering why this evolution is so important, consider cloud IT roles, as an example. These roles are among the first we explored and the first we announced, because more and more businesses and organizations are moving to the cloud. This move puts the spotlight on accelerating role specialization, and it brings to light a significant skills gap. Although 70% of CIOs have a “cloud-first strategy” and 85% of enterprises want to incorporate cloud architecture, only 16% of organizations have the required skills and processes.*
To determine key job roles in the industry, we began with market research, which helped us to define and refine the overall list of roles and skills. Then we consulted with industry subject matter experts who are working in the field—both inside and outside of Microsoft—and aligned our new training options and certification experiences with the defined roles and skills.
So, it made perfect sense to us to expand our training and certification beyond individual technologies and to focus on the skills and concepts needed for specific job roles. We have hands-on training inspired by working professionals who teach you to apply these learnings in today’s demanding IT environment. And, with the new role-based certification, your improved productivity and next-level skills help you to become even more valuable to your team and organization.
Everyone has a different learning style. As you gear up to get certified, choose modalities that work best for you, including microlearning, online courses, instructor-led training, and more. Here’s a closer look at some of the popular training methods:
- Microlearning available on Microsoft Learn offers you the opportunity to learn Microsoft technologies and role-based concepts online for free, in an engaging and interactive way. These step-by-step tutorials provide a hands-on learning experience with easily accessed materials. Earn achievement badges to share with your networks.
- Online courses are always a favorite, given their flexibility, self-paced structure, and technical content partnerships with industry leaders, such as Pluralsight, LinkedIn Learning, edX, and Microsoft Learning Partners. Build practical job skills with a focus on the role-based certification you are pursuing.
- Instructor-led training with Microsoft Learning Partners offers deep technical expertise. Choose from in-person training, online training, or blended learning, as you prepare with the experts for certification in your job role.
Training, exams, and certifications for Azure Administrator, Developer, and Solutions Architect are available now. We’ll be announcing Azure DevOps Engineer certification by the end of the year, along with exams and training for Microsoft 365 Administrator and Modern Desktop Administrator. Want the details? Check out Selina Winter’s latest blog post, New role-based training and certification is here, and we’re just getting started! Selina takes an in-depth look at the specifics of the new Microsoft Certification Program, and she answers some questions you might have as you get ready to get recognized.
What’s next? Your role-based training and certification! Certification is “a literal badge of honor and can be a VIP pass to better opportunities,” notes the success story that spotlights Microsoft-certified Paco de la Cruz. At Microsoft, we’re committed to helping you and your career keep pace with today’s business roles and requirements. If you’re ready to take your skills and career to the next level and you want validated and industry-recognized credentials to bring to work, this is a great time to start training and get certified. You can prepare for role-based certifications with online courses, instructor-led training, or even microlearning available through Microsoft Learn – keep in mind, more training content is scheduled to be released soon. Check back often!
We’re there with you every step of the way. And our recent announcements are just the beginning! Stay tuned for much more in the near future. In the meantime, learn more about the new Microsoft Certification Program and about our new learning experience, Microsoft Learn.
*Anderson, Cushing. Cloud Skills and Organizational Influence: How Cloud Skills Are Accelerating the Careers of IT Professionals. IDC/Microsoft, May 2017.
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Alex Payne is Sr. Director of the Global Customer Learning organization and is based in Redmond, WA. He and his team are responsible for training customers on Microsoft’s technologies and running Microsoft Certification programs. His team also has accountability for Microsoft’s Learning Partner network.
Prior to Worldwide Learning, he ran a Global ISV partner management team in One Commercial Partner (OCP). Alex’s other roles at Microsoft have included stints in product and marketing strategy in the Office 365 and SQL Server groups. Prior to Microsoft, Alex worked at Teradata Corp. Alex has spent that last twenty-four years in the software and services industry working in a variety of alliance management, services, technical marketing and product management roles. Additionally, he holds an MBA from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business with concentrations in Economics and Strategic Management.