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Microsoft Employee Wins First-Ever ITCC Award

Chicago, March 2, 2015 — The Information Technology Certification Council (ITCC), a resource for employers, government officials, academia, and individuals seeking information about the many benefits of IT certification, presented Microsoft Senior Product Manager of Certification Larry Kaye with the council’s inaugural 2015 Innovation Award for his work on AppToCert. AppToCert is a certification program that looks to streamline the way IT professionals earn Microsoft certifications. The award celebrates IT industry professionals responsible for creating a product, service or initiative that positively impacts customers, a test candidate’s experience, or company.


Launched in October 2014, AppToCert affords developers an opportunity to gain their MCSD: Window Store Apps Certification in a more economical, time-saving manner in comparison to the traditional 3-step certification process. AppToCert accomplishes this by coupling real world application with a team of Microsoft engineers, who perform a technical review of each application, thus allowing developers an opportunity to gain certification through the advancement of work they are passionate about. The end result: a faster certification process and a stronger base of applications in the Windows App Store.


Larry Kaye commented on the importance of winning the award, “It adds additional validation of the approach we are taking to evolve our whole certification program. Just like many other certifying bodies, we are largely dependent on knowledge-based multiple choice exams. Over time, we have certainly received feedback - both quantitative and qualitative - from those individuals involved in our program who wanted more opportunities to show real world application. We feel that, by ITCC recognizing our work, we are getting the thumbs-up to grow this particular effort, as well as look at other complementary ways to enhance our certification program.”


Gary Fluitt, past chairman of ITCC, explained the council’s selection, “The panel was very impressed with Larry’s and Microsoft’s approach to this unique developer audience. Developers are a hard nut to crack. We have all struggled to provide a compelling value prop to this audience. Larry has taken an innovative approach by leveraging work these developers are already doing and bringing developers into the IT certification fold, so to speak. Through this program, Microsoft is providing additional value to the Enterprise by helping these developers improve their skills and succeed with their applications.”


For his outstanding efforts in evolving the IT Certification process, Kaye was acknowledged before an audience of industry peers in Palm Springs, California prior to the Association of Test Publishers’ Innovations in Testing Conference this past weekend.