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Microsoft Retires MCSA, MCSE, And MCSD Certifications; What to Do Now?
There is no question that Microsoft is amongst the tech giants. Year after year, for more than a decade now Microsoft has been introducing new products in the market along with certifications on these products as well for technicians. Microsoft knows how to keep up with the pace of the ever-revolutionizing world of IT. Hence, continuous updating and retiring of certifications is a common practice by Microsoft.
In 2018, Microsoft started to emphasize on role-based certification and training by adding 34 certifications to its roadmap. This was done to assist candidates in developing the qualification and skills they need to succeed in a highly competitive world of various technical skills such as cloud computing.
Transitioning towards role-based certifications, Microsoft has declared that it will formally revoke all MCSA, MCSD, and MCSE certifications, along with their associated examinations and focus on role-based certifications instead. This implies that all the 15 certifications and 43 examinations will be revoked.
But there is no need for much panic in this regard as the candidates with MCSA, MCSD, or MCSE certifications will still be able to refer to these certifications for two years after retirement. Furthermore, a retiring certification doesn’t end your job with it. Your skills are still valuable. Instead, it gives your manager/employer the insight that you are tech-savvy who is focused on acquiring and updating in-demand skills. As far as you are not stopping to learn, you are relevant and desired.
Which Microsoft Certifications are Retiring?
As announced by Microsoft itself, the following Microsoft certifications are retiring. So, if you are planning to get any of them in 2020, you should find a better alternative instead.
- MCSA: BI Reporting
- MCSA: Dynamics 365 for Operations
- MCSA: SQL 2016 BI Development
- MCSA: SQL 2016 Database Admin
- MCSA: SQL 2016 Database Dev
- MCSA: SQL Server 2012/2014
- MCSA: Universal Windows Platform
- MCSA: Web Applications
- MCSA: Windows Server 2012
- MCSA: Windows Server 2016
- MCSD: App Builder
- MCSE: Business Applications
- MCSE: Core Infrastructure
- MCSE: Data Management & Analytics
- MCSE: Productivity
If you are certified with any of the above-mentioned certifications, they will stay active on the Microsoft transcript for 2 years even after they've retired. Later, they will be switched to the "inactive" part of the Microsoft transcript.
Which exam will be retired?
The above-mentioned certifications accompany the following 43 exams retirement;
- 70-333: Deploying Enterprise Voice with Skype for Business 2015
- 70-334: Core Solutions for Microsoft Skype for Business 2015
- 70-339: Managing Microsoft SharePoint Server 2016
- 70-345: Designing and Deploying Microsoft Exchange Server 2016
- 70-410: Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012
- 70-411: Administering Windows Server 2012
- 70-412: Configuring Advanced Windows Server 2012 Services
- 70-413: Designing and Implementing a Server Infrastructure
- 70-414: Implementing an Advanced Server Infrastructure
- 70-417: Upgrading Your Skills to MCSA Windows Server 2012
- 70-457: Developing Mobile Apps
- 70-461: Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014
- 70-462: Administering Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014 Databases
- 70-463: Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014
- 70-464: Developing Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014 Databases
- 70-465: Designing Database Solutions for Microsoft SQL Server
- 70-466: Implementing Data Models and Reports with Microsoft SQL Server
- 70-467: Designing Business Intelligence Solutions with Microsoft SQL Server
- 70-483: Programming in C#
- 70-486: Developing ASP.NET MVC Web Applications
- 70-487: Developing Microsoft Azure and Web Services
- 70-537: Configuring and Operating a Hybrid Cloud with Microsoft Azure Stack
- 70-705: Designing and Providing Microsoft Licensing Solutions to Large Organizations
- 70-740: Installation, Storage, and Compute with Windows Server 2016
- 70-741: Networking with Windows Server 2016
- 70-742: Identity with Windows Server 2016
- 70-743: Upgrading Your Skills to MCSA: Windows Server 2016
- 70-744: Securing Windows Server 2016
- 70-745: Implementing a Software-Defined Datacenter
- 70-761: Querying Data with Transact-SQL
- 70-762: Developing SQL Databases
- 70-764: Administering a SQL Database Infrastructure
- 70-765: Provisioning SQL Databases
- 70-767: Implementing a Data Warehouse using SQL
- 70-768: Developing SQL Data Models
- 70-777: Implementing Microsoft Azure Cosmos DB Solutions
- 70-778: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Power BI
- 70-779: Analyzing and Visualizing Data with Microsoft Excel
- MB2-716: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customization and Configuration
- MB6-894: Development, Extensions, and Deployment for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance
- MB6-897: Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Retail
- MB6-898: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Human Resources
When is Microsoft Retiring MCSA, MCSD, MCSE Certifications?
Microsoft has announced the retirement date and time on its official website in a blog post. All the above mentioned MCSA, MCSD, and MCSE certifications with examinations are scheduled to retire on the 30th of June 2020 at 11:59 PM Central Time.
March 26th Update: Microsoft has announced to extend the retiring date from June 30th to January 31, 2021, due to the COVID-19 outbreak. This update is to ensure that individuals who are due to take the examination won't get affected.
The expiration date of the certifications that were due to expire in a month or two is extended by 6 months to ensure a positive mind and continuous learning in the time of crisis.
What is The Alternate?
Now, the migration path suggested by Microsoft to switch from MCSD and MCSE certifications to current role-based certifications is as follows:
MCSE: Core Infrastructure
- Azure Solutions Architect Expert
- Azure Administrator Associate
- Azure Security Engineer Associate
- Messaging Administrator Associate
- Teams Administrator Associate
- Security Administrator Associate
- Enterprise Administrator Expert
MCSE: Data Management and Analytics
- Azure Data Scientist Associate
- Azure AI Engineer Associate
- Azure Data Engineer Associate
- Azure Database Administrator (coming soon)
- Data Analyst Associate (coming soon)
MCSD: App Builder
- Azure Developer Associate
MCSE: Business Applications
- Dynamics 365 Field Service Functional Consultant Associate
- Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management Functional Consultant Associate
- Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management, Manufacturing Functional Consultant Associate
- Dynamics 365 Sales Functional Consultant Associate
- Dynamics 365 Finance Functional Consultant Associate
- Dynamics 365 Customer Service Functional Consultant Associate
- Dynamics 365 Marketing Functional Consultant Associate
Although the volume of the alternate certifications is lesser than the retiring ones, you can consider it as a quality over quantity game playing.
About the remaining certifications, Microsoft might come with the replacement very soon. Since it’s all about developing credibility and evolving in technology for this tech giant.
Microsoft Announces Upcoming Certifications
With the news of retirement comes the announcement of new certifications based on emerging and more exciting roles. Microsoft has announced in its blog post about a few upcoming certifications that are designed to meet the requirements of the current IT environment and job openings.
Microsoft blog reads,
Given the undeniable importance of data professionals and the clear need for them in today’s high-tech world (in organizations and businesses, large and small), we’re expanding our Data & AI certification portfolio to include two new role-based certifications, effective early April 2020: Microsoft Certified: Azure Database Administrator Associate and Microsoft Certified: Data Analyst Associate.
Most Frequently Asked Questions
Why does Microsoft retire exams?
Microsoft retires old certification exams to pave the way for updated certifications that better match the business world.
Are my skills not valuable anymore?
After you have completed your certification examination, the certificate will stay in effect for life. Although the examination is canceled, you can confidently say that you are qualified to even after your retirement. Also, older qualification shows prospective employers that you are tech-savvy and you possess the right work ethic required to pass rigorous examinations.
How Do I Keep My Skills Updated?
Get the new certification! Usually, when Microsoft decided to retire an examination, it releases a substitute that is more appropriate than its former version. Your understanding of the previous examination will help for the latest one and obtaining the new certification would prove that you are current with the software. However, before you opt-in for another certification, do your homework to see if the product is retiring or if the newer and better version is available or coming soon.
How to Stay Current with Microsoft News?
Simple, by subscribing to Microsoft’s news and blogs.
By subscribing to QuickStart’s newsletter. Since QuickStart Technologies is the Gold Partner of Microsoft. Any official announcement that is made on Microsoft is more likely to be present on QuickStart as well.