In education circles, there’s a lot of talk about skills-based training and how companies are increasingly using them as a means of building up their workforce. This prioritization of skills-based training means that companies are able to take advantage of robust certification programs to boost their team’s core competencies and showcase their expertise to potential clients.
Even though there’s an emphasis on different certification programs for companies across industries, that doesn’t mean that all certifications are the same. It’s not particularly difficult to find a training program that grants documentation certifying a specific level of expertise across multiple toolsets, but that doesn’t always mean that individuals can do the job you’re hiring them to do.
So, what’s the best way of knowing a certification grants the necessary expertise? By going straight to the source.
Being Certified by Microsoft
These certifications come from programs designed by Microsoft to ensure that anyone who has earned a certificate can use the tools optimally according to Microsoft’s specifications. Experience from real-world applications of the Microsoft tools can result in more creative solutions using the Microsoft environment, but by earning a certification from Microsoft itself, organizations can achieve a baseline of expertise in implementing or deploying a Microsoft toolset. You can find out more about the importance of Microsoft certifications in another one of our blogs here.
But What Do Certifications Have to Do with the Microsoft Partnership Program?
Microsoft’s Cloud Partner Program is what has replaced Microsoft’s Gold Partner program (now considered legacy), both of which were focused on the Microsoft stack architect / developer, sanctioning the expertise of an organization’s team in the Microsoft environment. The way expertise gets evaluated is by obtaining Microsoft certifications in specific areas of the platform, which can include tools like SharePoint, Power Platform, Microsoft 365, and more.
Having a couple of certificates across an organization is great, but they won’t necessarily make an organization eligible to be a partner. The difference between an organization with certificates and a true Microsoft Cloud Partner is that the former can show individual initiative, while the latter involves having enough team members who possess the necessary skills to be Microsoft certified. With enough certifications, Microsoft would consider an organization’s expertise high enough to show others how to leverage Microsoft tools to the fullest.
Further, an organization awarded with the Microsoft Cloud Partner designation has proved not only the skilling requirements among its team members, but also proof from our actual portfolio of client work that we are successful owners of knowledge related to the Microsoft stack of technologies and with Azure administration and support. Therefore, the Partner designation also solidifies that an organization such as Weidenhammer has a proven track record of successful Microsoft technology stack initiatives and supporting efforts.
What Does the Partnership Program Mean for Clients?
As stated previously, Microsoft’s Cloud Partner Program gives business leaders an idea of the expertise of a business IT consulting organization’s resource skillsets and competencies. It’s by no means easy to become a Microsoft Partner, but it’s also not uncommon for organizations that earn the title to change their priorities and lose the designation by allowing certifications or the focus of client work to lapse.
Microsoft certifications change regularly and companies that recognize the value of Microsoft’s tools to businesses will ensure they invest continuously to stay on the cutting edge of Microsoft tools use cases. Doing so illustrates dedication to maintaining their expertise so clients are able to leverage the Microsoft environment to drive value across their organizations.
Weidenhammer, and in particular Hammer Tech and Hammer Dev, has been a Microsoft Partner for more than a decade, and what that means is we’ve consistently allocated resources to staying current on the latest Microsoft developments. We have also been labeled by Microsoft as a seasoned Digital Partner and consultant with a sizable catalog of client implementations. If you’re interested in finding out more about Hammer Dev and what kinds of solutions we’ve built for clients in the Microsoft environment, contact us.