Microsoft recently announced the new SharePoint Masters Certification.
I think the cert is a great idea. I have been working with Search since the first version of IIS and remember deploying a Site Server, Digital Dashboards, Team Sites, Portal 2003 and Portal 2007.
How many people remember the Workflow toolkit that came out with Office 2000? State based workflow's tracked by Access. Are you out there? I mean deployed it as a consultant. Not read about it or played with the toolkit. Will the real Slim Shadys please stand up? 🙂
Over the past years I have seen far too many “experts” and blogger's that regurgitate the same information over and over. It’s frustrating to see developers that fail to “get” the big picture when it comes to enterprise content management, web services, BI, Excel Services and the Profiles database.
SharePoint Masters, architects or whatever the title absolutely should be required to have an understanding of infrastructure, development and an understanding of the integration with other third parties like Oracle, SAP, PeopleSoft etc. And I mean integrate, as in real world scenarios. Too often people punt on this topic to “oh that’s what the BDC is for”.
I don’t want to diminish the MVP title but let’s remember that MVPS are community leaders and give back. The MVP title has no exams or proven experience requirements. I can assure you that while many of the selfless hardworking MVPS add tremendous value to the user communities many are not what I would define as certifiable masters or architects in real world deployments.
I am happy to see this certification. I think it will help separate the people who are out in the trenches day after day for years now. We don’t have time to stop and write and blog and brag but we are fighting the fight. And yes, we do understand development, deployment, service integration, identity integration, etc.
We understand that in large enterprise global deployments we have to work with server teams, networking teams, developers, designers, business owners, business analysts and this requires proven field experience.
Sure we need an army of coders and we need an army of infrastructure folks but we also need a select few with proven leadership, deployment credentials and project management skills with the architect title and this certification will provide the distinction.
When I can get out of the “trenches” for a break I will make my way to Redmond and will look forward to passing the certification.
SharePoint Joel's thoughts