Thursday, 22 July 2010

Guest blogger: SharePoint 2010 Certification

All this week we will be featuring posts from guest blogger Joel Jeffery. Joel is a Firebrand Training instructor, who is currently developing courseware for our brand new SharePoint 2010 Configuring / Administrator and SharePoint Developer courses...

I’ve just read a really interesting blog post about Microsoft’s approach in bringing SharePoint to market, and I felt compelled to share my views on the subject.

SharePoint Matures

It occurs to me that SharePoint has taken a while to mature - and it certainly has done just that. The first versions of the technology stack didn’t have much in the way of targeted Developer or IT Pro learning.

Actually, for WSS 3.0 and SharePoint 2007, the only official Microsoft courses were for the IT Pro community (MOCs 5060 and 5061). I'm not saying that Microsoft left things up to the community, but that SharePoint was a somewhat niche product (compared to
Microsoft’s heavy-weight market share). Microsoft couldn’t deliver the support and training to all of the groups that needed it, while keeping it cost-effective.

The Courseware Library

However, Microsoft did make use of the already-growing Microsoft Courseware Library. This allows 3rd party training providers of sufficient quality to gain a Microsoft seal of approval.

Thanks to this, there have been some great training courses:
  • SharePoint 2007 Advanced Development
  • SharePoint 2007 Business Intelligence
  • SharePoint 2007 Branding and Content Management
  • SharePoint End Users and Information Workers
You need to be a Microsoft Certified Trainer (a MCT like me!) to deliver these courses. Microsoft leaves a space for Microsoft partners to fill. Big partners like Firebrand Training, and not-so-big partners like JFDI Phoenix (my company!)

SharePoint Certification

SharePoint 2010 certification has evolved:

  • For a SharePoint Administrator or SharePoint Developer, the certifications include MCITP and MCPD certification respectively. What an improvement on the four MCTS certifications we had for SharePoint 2007!
  • Microsoft is releasing MOCs for both Administrators and Developers! Look out for MOC 10175 and MOC 10232 (for Developers), and 10174 and 10231 (for IT Professionals).
  • If you have the MCITP and MCPD certifications for SharePoint, you could potentially move onto the SharePoint Certified Master certification. This normally takes three weeks and doesn't come cheap. You also need to pass a CV screen and interview before gaining a place on a course - which currently only runs in the USA.
  • STOP PRESS! It appears that there may be Information Worker training coming soon!