Microsoft Revamps Its IT Certification Program to Meet Customer Needs

REDMOND, Wash., Oct. 11, 2001 — Microsoft Corp. today announced significant updates to its Microsoft®
Certified Professional (MCP) program. Based on customer feedback, Microsoft will introduce a new credential targeting IT administrators, as well as a plan to simultaneously recognize multiple, distinct versions of all MCP credentials.

“There are more than 1 million MCPs at the forefront of driving customer success with Microsoft technologies,”
said Mike Nash, vice president of the Content Development and Delivery Group at Microsoft.
“These enhancements to the MCP program are being made in direct response to the changing needs of this important community.”

New Credential Targets the Systems Administrator

Microsoft is responding to a growing market need by creating the Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA) credential. Customer research has demonstrated that the Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) certification includes unique design and implementation skills that are not directly applicable to the systems administrator job function. The MCSA credential has been designed to include a subset of the MCSE credentials exams and is focused specifically on the skills necessary to successfully manage and troubleshoot the ongoing needs of Windows®
2000 operating system-based systems.

“The MCSA credential directly addresses the currently unmet needs of a large audience of IT administrators,”
said Lisa Wargo, director of marketing for Ameriteach.
“It provides validation of a skill set that is in high demand in todays market and delivers an opportunity for individuals to take immediate action, as most of its component exams are already available.”

Credential Versions Replace Decertification Policy

Historically, Microsoft has periodically retired credentials earned on older versions of its products. With the increased complexity of IT environments, however, it has become difficult for the company to accurately predict the appropriate timing for such retirements. The policy changes the company is announcing today will eliminate the need for such predictions. Going forward, the MCP program will recognize credentials for as long as they are in demand in the marketplace, and will assign credential version designations to differentiate individuals who have updated their skills to the latest Microsoft technologies. A key result of this program change is that Microsoft Certified Systems Engineers in the Windows NT®
4.0 operating system will remain certified indefinitely, and MCSEs in Windows 2000 will now be formally referred to as MCSE on Microsoft Windows 2000.

“Microsoft is definitely taking this program in the right direction,”
said John Sutherland, Security Services director at Exodus Communications.
“Keeping my certification up-to-date has created excellent career opportunities for me, and I feel very comfortable knowing I have invested my time in a program that is proactively addressing the evolving needs of the IT community.”

Candidates who are interested in more information, including immediate steps they can take toward earning the MCSA credential, should visit http://www.microsoft.com/mcp/ or contact their local Microsoft Certified Technical Education Center for the latest information about training and certification exam requirements.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
“MSFT”
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

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