Six Hot Microsoft Certifications for 2019
Organizations need IT professionals who are trained to succeed in specific workplace roles. This means having a breadth of knowledge and skills necessary to enable achievement of a company's business goals, not just knowing how to use a particular technology or product. With the recent changes to its certification program, Microsoft has addressed the demand for job- and career-oriented training.
The new Azure role-based certifications for developers, administrators, and solutions architects align closely with job-specific knowledge and skills. They are unlike other product-specific credentials, which validate expertise in a particular product or technology, but don't necessarily prepare candidates to perform specific roles in the workplace.
Microsoft's new role-based certs offer candidates the option of advancing from fundamental to associate to expert level. The six certifications discussed here cover knowledge and skills that are currently in demand. All have Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) status.
MCSE: Core Infrastructure
This certification demonstrates the holder's ability to manage a modern data center, which entails identity and systems management, virtualization, storage, and networking. It is designed to train candidates for roles, such as systems support specialist, IT administrator, architect, and information security analyst.
To earn this credential, a candidate must have a valid MCSA: Windows Server 2016 or MCSA: Windows Server 2012 certification and pass one exam on any of the following 7 topics:
? Exam 70-413/Course 20413: Designing and implementing a server infrastructure
? Exam 70-414/Course 20414: Implementing an advanced server infrastructure
? Exam 70-744/Course 20744: Securing Windows Server 2016
? Exam 70-745/Course 20745: Implementing software-defined data centres
? Exam 70-473/Course 40441: Designing and implementing Cloud Data Platform solutions (will be retired on June 30)
? Exam 70-475/Course 552241 and 552242: Designing and implementing Big Data Analytics solutions (will be retired on June 30)
? Exam 70-537/Course 20537: Configuring and operating a hybrid cloud with Microsoft Azure Stack
Details of exams, training, and exam prep materials are available online.
MCSA: Microsoft Certified Azure Administrator Associate
Designed for cloud administrators, this new certification validates the ability to manage computing, network, storage, and security services for Microsoft Azure Solutions. Microsoft verifies expertise in managing Azure subscriptions and resources, storage, virtual machines and networks, identities, migration of servers to Azure, applications, virtual networking and security.
This certification covers skills that Azure administrators need to succeed in their job role instead of the generic knowledge that was required for Exam-70-533, which has been retired.
You need to pass two exams — AZ-100: Microsoft Azure Infrastructure and Deployment and AZ-101: Microsoft Azure Integration and Security — to earn this credential.
Details of exams, training, and exam prep materials are available online.
MCSA: Microsoft Certified Azure Developer Associate
This credential is suitable for people who aspire to work as cloud developers. It demonstrates expertise in developing cloud applications and services, including solution design, development, implementation, and testing, as well as maintenance. Certified Azure Developer Associates work with cloud architects, administrators, DBAs, and customers to implement solutions.
This new certification covers skills and current technological expertise that Azure developers need to be successful at work instead of the generic knowledge that was required for Exam-70-532, which has been retired.
Aspirants are required to have at least 1 year of experience building scalable Azure solutions from start to completion and know at least one programming language for cloud computing. They must also pass the AZ-203: Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure exam.
Information about exams, training, and exam prep materials is available online. Microsoft official practice tests for this cert are expected soon.
MCSE: Microsoft Certified Azure Solutions Architect Expert
This certification is designed for Azure solutions architects who have considerable experience across different areas of IT operations, such as security, data management, virtualization, identity, networking, budgeting and control.
Candidates are required to be skilled in Azure administration, development, and DevOps, and have advanced expertise in at least one of these areas. The must also pass the AZ-300: Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies and AZ-301: Microsoft Azure Architect Design exams.
This new certification covers skills and current technological expertise that Azure architects must have to deliver on the job instead of the generic skills that were required for Exam-70-535, which has been retired.
Click here for details pertaining to exams, training, and self-study materials. Microsoft Official Practice tests for this cert are expected soon.
MCSA: Windows Server 2016
This credential is useful for candidates working toward a career as a computer systems or network administrator, or a computer support professional. The MCSA: Windows Server 2016 certification demonstrates expertise in installation, compute, and storage functions, networking services, and identity management in Windows Server 2016.
Important skills include Hyper-V and High Availability, implementing DNS, DHCP and IPAM, network connectivity, remote access solutions, Active Directory Domain services, and managing Group Policy.
To attain this credential, you need to pass three exams. These are 70-740: Installation, Storage, and Compute with Windows Server 2016, 70-741: Networking with Windows Server 2016, and 70-742: Identity with Windows Server 2016.
Preparation options include online and instructor-led training, practice tests and guides. Information about exams and training, and also exam prep materials, are available online.
MCSD: App Builder
The MCSD: App Builder certification is one of the most popular certifications for developers. Designed for developers who have at least a year's experience developing web or mobile applications, this credential proves that holders have the knowledge and skills required to develop current web or mobile applications as well as services.
To earn the MCSD: App Builder certification, you need to have a MCSA in Web Applications or Universal Windows Platform (UWP) and pass one of 5 exams, each of which has a minimum experience requirement:
? Exam 70-357: Developing Mobile Apps
? Exam 70-483/Course 20483: Programming in C#
? Exam 70-486/Course 20486: Developing ASP.NET MVC Web Applications
? Exam 70-487/Course 20487: Developing Microsoft Azure and Web Services
Each exam covers one or more technologies, such as C#, Azure, Office Client, Share Point, .Net, HTML5, and Visual Studio. Details of exam topics and required experience are available online.
Additional resources and further new credentials
Microsoft offers online and classroom training, including some free courses through Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA). Links to Microsoft Official Practice Tests and self-study guides are available on each certification web page.
Pearson and other third parties also offer study guides, practice tests, and other prep materials. It's a good idea to check with colleagues, as well as members of your study group and online communities, about the most comprehensive and reliable prep options available.
Other role-based certifications that have been introduced include Microsoft Certified: Azure DevOps Engineer Expert and Microsoft Certified Messaging Administrator. Microsoft expects to launch the Data & AI and Dynamics 365 certifications soon.