BeLux Blog

Competency news

Dear Partner

At our 2012 Worldwide Partner Conference, we unveiled many upcoming competency changes designed to serve our customers better. Read below for news on the Application Development competency and those that include SharePoint and Windows 8.

Also important for partners seeking Small Business competency attainment: there will be a new Office 365 exam, 74: 324, designed specifically to meet the needs of partners implementing Office 365 for small business customers. See the competency info below for more details.

What’s New

New Pre-Sales Technical Specialist Accreditation Available Now

Microsoft Partner Network Pre-Sales Technical Specialist Accreditation is a new program designed to help individual pre-sales technical professionals strengthen your solution knowledge and gain recognition for solution expertise for a specific set of Microsoft solutions.

Did you know that 81% of managers believe that people who are trained are more productive? You can advance your career by attaining this new accreditation in your free time at no cost. You’ll earn a professional badge to print on your business cards and add to your CV.

This is a great way to get trained in a low-cost, efficient way and evidence shows that trained sales and pre-sales professionals close larger deals in a shorter timeframe.

We now have Pre-Sales Technical Specialist accreditation training and assessments available for the following five competencies:

· BI

· Communications

· CRM

· ERP

· Management and Virtualization

Are You Planning on Writing a Sales or Pre-Sales Assessment? If So, Register to Enter Our Contest and You Could Win a Cool Prize

New registrants for the Sales Excellence program must successfully complete an assessment on Sales Excellence Central to be automatically entered to win a ticket to WPC 2013 or TechNet through the Ready to Win contest. Get all the details and register here.

Did You Attend WPC? 2-for-1 Exam Offer Extended through August 17th

Double your readiness! This offer for WPC attendees has been extended. Note that both exams must be taken by the same candidate and all vouchers must be redeemed by and all exams taken by December 31, 2012. Complete details and purchase information here.

Business Value of MPN Benefits

Read this IDC white paper to see whether you are maximizing your membership benefits – valued by IDC at US$320,000, based on a 50-person company with US$5–10 million in revenue and from two to five competencies.

Competency Specific Information

 

BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE

Show What You Know: New Pre-Sales Technical Specialist Accreditation

The Pre-Sales Technical Assessment for BI is now available, as well as training to help you prepare. Access the learning path and assessment here, and learn more about the program here.

New First-Look-Clinic and Updating Your Skills Courses for SQL Server 2012
Have a look at new features of SQL Server 2012 and update your skills through three new courses:

· 40007A: First Look Clinic: Microsoft SQL Server 2012

· 40008A: Updating your Database Skills to Microsoft SQL Server 2012

· 40009A: Updating your Business Intelligence Skills to Microsoft SQL Server 2012

COMMUNICATIONS

Show What You Know: New Pre-Sales Technical Specialist Accreditation

The Pre-Sales Technical Assessment for Communications is now available, as well as training to help you prepare. Access the learning path and assessment here, and learn more about the program here.

CONTENT MANAGEMENT

Upcoming Competency Changes

Effective November 2012, we are merging the Portals and Collaboration, Content Management, and Search competencies into a single competency to reflect customers’ requests for an end-to-end solution for finding, sharing, managing, and collaborating on content. The new Collaboration and Content competency will make it easier and more cost effective for SharePoint partners to engage with Microsoft. All partners in these existing competencies will be automatically transitioned into the new competency at launch automatically. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT

Show What You Know: New Pre-Sales Technical Specialist Accreditation

The Pre-Sales Technical Assessment for CRM is now available, as well as training to help you prepare. Access the learning path and assessment here, and learn more about the program here.

Worldwide Microsoft Dynamics Partner Strategy Announcement

Microsoft Dynamics made a number of announcements at WPC 2012 related to partner incentives. For more information, look here

DATA PLATFORM

New First-Look-Clinic and Updating Your Skills Courses for SQL Server 2012
Have a look at new features of SQL Server 2012 and update your skills through three new courses:

· 40007A: First Look Clinic: Microsoft SQL Server 2012

· 40008A: Updating your Database Skills to Microsoft SQL Server 2012

· 40009A: Updating your Business Intelligence Skills to Microsoft SQL Server 2012

DESKTOP

Are You Ready for Windows 8?
Get trained and get ready using our first series of early Windows 8 partner courses found on the new sales and marketing partner learning path. Training includes:

· Windows 8 Value for Small and Midsized Businesses

· Windows 8 Value for Enterprise Scenarios

· Windows 8 and RT (Runtime) Devices

A New Office Has Arrived

The next release of Microsoft Office features a new design that works with touch, stylus, mouse, or keyboard across new Windows devices, including tablets. Social is included, and the UI unlocks new scenarios in reading, note taking, meetings, communications. It will be delivered to subscribers through an always up-to-date cloud service. So, where do you start? We’ll have more resources coming in the next few weeks, but here are key resources:

· For everyone, download the Preview

· For IT pros, check out these TechNet resources

Upcoming Competency Changes

Computing is now done on tablets and smartphones in addition to traditional PCs and laptops. Employees bring personal devices to work, a trend known as “consumerization of IT.” To reflect this market shift, the Desktop competency will evolve to become the new Devices and Deployment competency. Effective November 2012, this change is designed to recognize and reward partners who help customers select, configure, and manage a range of secure, productive devices. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

DIGITAL MARKETING

Upcoming Competency Changes

Effective November 2012, we are updating this competency to include Bing advertising tools and assets. This helps us address customer demand for compelling, end-to-end online experiences integrating marketing campaigns across display and search advertising with demonstrable ROI. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

ENTERPRISE RESOURCE PLANNING

Show What You Know: New Pre-Sales Technical Specialist Accreditation

The Pre-Sales Technical Assessment for ERP is now available, as well as training to help you prepare. Access the learning path and assessment here, and learn more about the program here.

Worldwide Microsoft Dynamics Partner Strategy Announcement

Microsoft Dynamics made a number of announcements at WPC 2012 related to partner incentives. For more information, look here

 

ISV/SOFTWARE

Upcoming Competency Changes

Effective November 2012, we are consolidating the ISV, Software Development, and Web Development competencies into a single new Application Development competency. All partners in these existing competencies will be automatically transitioned into the new competency at launch. At the same time we will expand the number of other competencies with integrated Application Tracks to ensure they include benefits and requirements that are relevant for development focused partners. Additionally, Bing advertising credits will be available to all partners in the Application Development competency. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

MANAGEMENT AND VIRTUALIZATION

Show What You Know: New Pre-Sales Technical Specialist Accreditation

Pre-sales technical specialists can now get relevant training on the Private Cloud, including System Center 2012 and Windows Server 2012. The four courses in this learning path provide a private cloud overview, customer benefits of each product, a competition course, and demo resources and help prepare pre-sales technical specialists for the Private Cloud, Management, and Virtualization Assessment, which will be available later this summer. Access the learning path and assessment here, and learn more about the program here.

MESSAGING

A New Office Has Arrived

The next release of Microsoft Office features a new design that works with touch, stylus, mouse, or keyboard across new Windows devices, including tablets. Social is included, and the UI unlocks new scenarios in reading, note taking, meetings, communications. It will be delivered to subscribers through an always up-to-date cloud service. So, where do you start? We’ll have more resources coming in the next few weeks, but here are key resources:

· For everyone, download the Preview

· For IT pros, check out these TechNet resources

· Developers, prepare to build apps using resources from MSDN

 

PORTALS AND COLLABORATION

Upcoming Competency Changes

Effective November 2012, we are merging the Portals and Collaboration, Content Management, and Search competencies into a single competency to reflect customers’ requests for an end-to-end solution for finding, sharing, managing, and collaborating on content. The new Collaboration and Content competency will make it easier and more cost effective for SharePoint partners to engage with Microsoft. All partners in these existing competencies will be automatically transitioned into the new competency at launch automatically. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

A New Office Has Arrived

The next release of Microsoft Office features a new design that works with touch, stylus, mouse, or keyboard across new Windows devices, including tablets. Social is included, and the UI unlocks new scenarios in reading, note taking, meetings, communications. It will be delivered to subscribers through an always up-to-date cloud service. So, where do you start? We’ll have more resources coming in the next few weeks, but here are key resources:

· For everyone, download the Preview

· For IT pros, check out these TechNet resources

· Developers, prepare to build apps using resources from MSDN

 

SEARCH

Upcoming Competency Changes

Effective November 2012, we are merging the Portals and Collaboration, Content Management, and Search competencies into a single competency to reflect customers’ requests for an end-to-end solution for finding, sharing, managing, and collaborating on content. The new Collaboration and Content competency will make it easier and more cost effective for SharePoint partners to engage with Microsoft. All partners in these existing competencies will be automatically transitioned into the new competency at launch automatically. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

SERVER PLATFORM

Windows Server 2012 Training – Lots of New Role-Based Training!

The Windows Server 2012 partner learning path recently been updated with a multitude of new training.

For implementers, deep technical training – now on the learning path — covers popular technologies including:

· Virtualization

· Storage

· Networking

· Identity and Security

· Management and Deployment

· Remote Access

· Web/App

Sales professionals can take five short new Windows Server 2012 sales courses to help hone sales techniques on the latest release and prepare for the upcoming sales assessment that will be available later this year.

Licensing specialists can listen to the July 5th call recording to find details on licensing the latest release, as well as take these trainings:

· Getting Started with Windows Server 2012 Licensing, July 2012

· Windows Server 2012 Product and Program Overview July 2012

· Windows Server 2012 Pricing and SKU Overview July 2012

Finally, midmarket and small business-focused partners can explore this new courseware:

· Growing Your Mid-Market Business Practice with Windows Server 2012

· Growing Your Small Business Practice with Windows Server 2012

New: 40006A – Hands On Lab: Windows Server 2012

This three-hour hands-on lab complements the First Look Clinic (40005A). The lab is built on the Windows Server 2012 Consumer Preview (Beta release) software and will cover some of the key new features and functionality such as Server Manager, Windows PowerShell, Server Core, Active Directory, IP Address Management (IPAM), and Dynamic Access Control. It will also cover some of the significant changes that have taken place in Hyper-V in Windows Server 2012. Read the syllabus for more information.

SMALL BUSINESS

Competency Exam Advisory!

The former mandatory exam, 70-323: Administering Office 365, is changing. Exam 70-323 is based on enterprise scenarios that Small Business partners typically do not implement. Therefore, we are creating a new exam, 74-324: Administering Office 365 for Small Business that is based on a training course specifically designed to meet the needs of partners administering Office 365 for small business customers. This new exam should be available in the early September timeframe – make sure you’re following our Twitter feed @mpntraining for an announcement.

Once the new exam is available, exams 70-321 and 70-323 will be removed from this competency. See the updated learning path here.

Registration is now available for the JumpStart clinic especially designed to help you prepare for the new exam. Register for the August 29-30th event here.

SOFTWARE ASSET MANAGEMENT

Earn the Software Asset Management competency

Prepare to pass the Software Asset Management competency exam 70-673. Utilize the no-cost online tutorials, preparation guides and practice test to help you get ready—and keep visiting this site for the latest training materials.

SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT

Upcoming Competency Changes

Effective November 2012, we are consolidating the ISV, Software Development, and Web Development competencies into a single new Application Development competency. All partners in these existing competencies will be automatically transitioned into the new competency at launch. At the same time we will expand the number of other competencies with integrated Application Tracks to ensure they include benefits and requirements that are relevant for development focused partners. Additionally, Bing advertising credits will be available to all partners in the Application Development competency. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

WEB DEVELOPMENT

Upcoming Competency Changes

Effective November 2012, we are consolidating the ISV, Software Development, and Web Development competencies into a single new Application Development competency. All partners in these existing competencies will be automatically transitioned into the new competency at launch. At the same time we will expand the number of other competencies with integrated Application Tracks to ensure they include benefits and requirements that are relevant for development focused partners. Additionally, Bing advertising credits will be available to all partners in the Application Development competency. Learn more about these changes by watching the recording of this WPC Value keynote here.

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