Published! My certification guide for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Customization & Configuration
I spent most of last year writing my first book, Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Customization & Configuration (MB2-866) Certification Guide, published by Packt Publishing.
I wrote the book because I think certification is important.
The Microsoft Dynamics CRM certifications aren’t perfect — I wish custom workflows, dialogs and reports were included in MB2-866 — but they are all we have.
Certifications prove that you have acquired the necessary knowledge to pass the exam, but their value to me is more than this: they show that you’re the type of person who likes to acquire knowledge. Candidates who have achieved certification often stand out because they are self-starters, responsible for their own career.
There are four exams available for Microsoft Dynamics CRM professionals:
- Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Applications (Exam MB2-868). This exam covers the standard marketing, sales, service management and service scheduling functionality. It’s a useful certification for system administrators and business analysts.
- Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Installation and Deployment (Exam MB2-867). This exam is useful for system administrators and implementation consultants, especially if you are working on on-premise deployments. It covers the CRM server, e-mail router, CRM for Outlook client, installation configuration options, upgrades and redeployments.
- Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Customization and Configuration (Exam MB2-866). Aimed at system administrators, business analysts and implementation consultants, this exam covers the organization structure, entity modelling, user interface customization, auditing and solution management.
- Extending Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 (Exam MB2-876). Developers will be most interested in the topics covered in this exam: platform operations, custom workflow assemblies, plugins, application events, integration, and web resources.
Passing any one of these exams will earn you a Microsoft Certified Technical Specialist (MCTS) designation. MCTS certifications prove your skill in a feature area of a Microsoft product.
Whether you work for yourself as an independent consultant, or work for a Microsoft customer, or work for a Microsoft partner, earning a Microsoft Dynamics CRM certification leads the way to better career opportunities.
Microsoft partners value certified individuals because employing Microsoft certified professionals enables them to achieve silver and gold competencies that demonstrates their commitment to, and expertise in, Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
Microsoft customers value certified individuals because Microsoft Dynamics CRM solutions implemented, managed and supported by Microsoft certified professionals have a lower total cost of ownership and a higher return on investment.
Achieving certification demonstrates technical proficiency that validates your knowledge, adds credibility to your résumé, and will help you advance your career. When combined with real-world experience, certification will mean you are more highly regarded than other individuals with similar experience who haven’t taken training or shown enough initiative to achieve certification.
I wrote the book as a concise guide to help students gain the necessary knowledge to pass the exam; no more no less. It includes all the procedures you need to know, self-test sections at the end of each chapter, and a 75 question exam designed to simulate the real thing.
If you’re buying the book before taking the exam: good luck! I look forward to your book reviews.
If you want more real-world best practices on a wider range of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, I’d also thoroughly recommend the CRM Field Guide, to which I was a contributing author along with an awesome group of other Microsoft CRM MVPs.