It has been several years since I last studied for a Microsoft Certification. (Insert your favorite saying about how time flies and life changes here!) Back in February 2014, I started working towards the old MCSE: Business Intelligence. The first step was to earn the MCSA: SQL Server 2012/2014. It took longer than I expected, including a frustrating experience trying an online proctored exam, but I finally passed the last of the three required exams in May 2015.
By then, my goals had changed. Varigence had announced the BimlHero Certified Expert program, and I decided to put the MCSE on hold for a while. Sorry, Microsoft, Biml was just more fun! :) In February 2016, after 10 months of working on the Biml certification, I became the second BimlHero in the world.
My plan was always to resume studying for MCSE: Business Intelligence. But, surprise surprise, things changed again. My new jobs required a lot of traveling, and I even put tech on hold for over a year while working in a community-facing role. I challenged myself in different ways by speaking and delivering workshops. In short, I chose to focus on developing other skills.
We are now almost halfway through 2018 and I am finally ready to continue working towards my next Microsoft Certification. Except for the tiny little detail that I was so slow that the certification I originally set as my goal no longer exists. Hahaha! :) Instead of the old MCSE: Business Intelligence, my updated goal is…
Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert: Data Management and Analytics
“Demonstrate your broad skill sets in SQL administration, building enterprise-scale data solutions, and leveraging business intelligence data – both on-premises and in cloud environments.”
Since I already have the MCSA: SQL Server 2012/2014, I only need to pass one additional exam to earn the MCSE: Data Management and Analytics. There are currently 12 exams to choose from, and several of them are also required for other MCSAs. I figured if I’m going to study for one exam for the MCSE, why not just continue studying for another exam and earn a newer MCSA as well? My second, updated goal is…
Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate: SQL 2016 BI Development
This certification validates your extract, transform, and load (ETL) and data warehouse skills, along with those for implementing BI solutions using multidimensional and tabular data models and online analytical processing (OLAP) cubes.
To earn the MCSA: SQL 2016 BI Development, I need to pass two exams:
I will blog about my experiences preparing for and taking these exams in separate blog posts.
The 70-767 exam is the one I have most hands-on experience with and the one that I will attempt first. The 70-768 exam will be more difficult since I have less project experience, but I’m very much looking forward to digging into and learning these topics. If all goes well, I hope to earn my MCSE and my second MCSA by the end of the summer :)
Update: Goals Achieved!
MCSE: On June 5th, 2018, I passed exam 70-767 and became a Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert: Data Management and Analytics! I later wrote about my experiences preparing for and taking Exam 70-767.
MCSA: On July 31st, 2018, I passed exam 70-768 and became a Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate: SQL 2016 BI Development!