Microsoft has revamped its training programme for certified engineers to provide specialist skills geared towards Windows Server 2008.
Previously, it was possible for IT professionals to train and gain a certificate as a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE), which covered a range of skills relating to Microsoft desktop and server products.
Now, with the availability of Windows Server 2008, Microsoft has broken the certification programme down, replacing MCSE with the Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP) training programme,
IT professionals who want to maintain a current certificate to show they are competent at implementing and managing Windows Server 2008 environments will need to retrain and take the MCITP exam.
Unlike its predecessor, MCITP is designed to provide students with a certificate based on a particular job function. Microsoft has introduced certification for a number of job roles including business intelligence developer, consumer support technician, database developer, database administrator, enterprise messaging administrator, enterprise project management with Microsoft Office Project Server 2007, enterprise aministrator and server administrator.
Gary Barnett, analyst at Bathwick Group, said, "For people working in desktop and technical support, getting MS qualifications is a really good career move. There are quite a few MS database administrator jobs advertised where certification is a pre-requisite.
"By making the qualification more specific to roles, it becomes easier for employers to find the right skilled people in products like Sharepoint, SQL Server and other Microsoft infrastructure tools."
Rob Chapman, CEO at Firebrand Training, said, "IT professionals will need to upgrade their existing MCSE qualification to the MCTS certification. This upgrade involves an exam and is the most basic qualification to demonstrate expertise in core areas of Microsoft technology. The programme drives people to certify on a regular basis."