Did you know that one of the most powerful and immediate way to boost your career is upgrading your technical skills and earning your certification? This blog post makes the case for building your digital skills AND getting certified. Learn how Microsoft Virtual Training Days Canada can accelerate your digital skilling journey.
We live in an increasingly technical world. From healthcare and travel to government services and entertainment, many aspects of the Canadian way of life are rapidly digitizing. The pandemic only served to accelerate the country’s digital transformation, opening a potential floodgate of innovation. Where does all this change leave you?
Do you have the skills employers need today? Can your employees help you deliver an integrated digital customer experience?
Step 1: Believe in yourself
You’re probably more technical than you think. And while you may not identify as technical, you can build and certify your technical knowledge simply by taking the appropriate classes and exams. Managers, coordinators, office clerks, developers, engineers, and IT pros can build new digital skills one class at a time.
For technical professionals, upgrading their knowledge and skills regularly enables them to compete and win. You might wonder where or with whom to best invest your time. Should you specialize in a particular area like security? Perhaps you should focus on Azure or Microsoft’s Power Platform?
Technical professional or not, you can benefit dramatically by building your digital skills and developing your full potential.
Step 2: Feed your curiosity
Fortunately, you can choose to focus your skilling along your journey. You’re encouraged to read some inspirational materials to whet your technical appetite. The Microsoft Great Canadian Innovators 2020 Yearbook features 15 Canadian companies using transformative technologies to make huge strides.
If you’re a Microsoft partner, or a potential partner, download a free copy of IMPACT 2020 Awards Yearbook to read profiles of award-winning Canadian partner innovation across segments and specialties. The Partners make it possible website also features new stories of digital transformation from across North America.
Step 3: Start with one class
Start small. Choose a class on a topic that intrigues you the most, like AI or data. Fortunately, it’s a “learner’s market” right now, with great, free upskilling programs like Microsoft Virtual Training Days and LinkedIn Learning. This is the perfect time to take advantage of free classes and certification exams to invest in yourself.
Fundamentals classes at Microsoft Virtual Training Days are designed for a general business audience, not just technical professionals. They represent a great point of entry into the technologies and concepts defining our times, including artificial intelligence, data, cloud, analytics, and automation.
Microsoft Virtual Training Days current offers four Fundamentals classes:
- Azure AI Fundamentals: Explore fundamental artificial intelligence concepts and learn how to get started with AI.
- Data Fundamentals: Explore relational and non-relational data offerings as well as big data and modern data warehouse analytics solutions.
- Azure Fundamentals: Master modern cloud concepts and strategies. Learn how to access transformative services.
- Power Platform Fundamentals: Master modern cloud concepts and strategies. Learn how to access transformative services.
If you’re ready for more technical content, dive right into the Specialty classes:
- Security: Secure and Protect Your Organization
- Security: Protect Sensitive Information and Manage Data Risk
- Microsoft 365 Enable Remote Work with Microsoft Teams
- Microsoft 365 Building Microsoft Teams Integrations and Workflows
- Power Platform: App Maker
- Dynamics 365: Activate Digital Selling
- Dynamics 365: Build a Resilient Supply Chain
- Azure: DevOps with GitHub
- Azure: Migrating On-Premises Infrastructure and Data
- Azure: Modernize .Net Apps
- Azure: Linux OSS Database Migration
- Azure: Implementing Hybrid Infrastructure
- Azure: Deliver Integrated Analytics with Azure Synapse
Classes fill up fast. Make sure you visit Microsoft Virtual Training Days for the latest classes on offer.
Step 4: Certify your skills
Once you take a class, such as a Fundamentals class in Microsoft Virtual Training Days, make sure you also complete the correlating exam. When you complete a Microsoft class eligible for certification, Microsoft automatically provides you with a voucher you can redeem to take the correlating exam at no cost. Passing those exams earns you Fundamentals and Specialty certifications and badges from Microsoft.
Make no mistake, you stand to benefit enormously by certifying your newfound digital knowledge and skills. Certification is where the magic happens. When professionals take the extra step of certifying their skills and knowledge, great things follow. Research consistently points to the quantifiable impact of certifying your knowledge and skills.
27 percent of the almost 1400 professionals surveyed in the 2019-20 Nigel Frank International Microsoft Dynamics Salary Survey reported a direct increase in their salary after certification.
The potential to make more money is just one benefit of certification. In Pearson Vue’s 2018 VUE Value of Certification report 91 percent of IT pros said certification gives them more credibility, with 67 percent of pros reporting more self-confidence and 41 percent reporting increased job satisfaction.
Global Knowledge 2019 IT Decision Makers Insights reports that 93 percent of decision-makers agree certified employees provide added value.
Step 5: Repeat and succeed
Once you have one certification behind you, keep going! Learning new skills and certifying them are the key to getting and staying in demand. Remember: As the economy rapidly digitizes, building your digital knowledge and skills is the one thing you can do with your career that will almost surely help you succeed.
– 2018 Pearson VUE Value of IT Certification
– Global Knowledge 2019 IT skills and salary report
– Microsoft Dynamics Salary Survey – extended edition – Nigel Frank