What is a Microsoft Certified Master?

Microsoft Certified MasterSQL Solutions Group is proud to have four Microsoft Certified Masters (MCM) on the team—founder Randy Knight, Jason Brimhall, Ben Miller, and Wayne Sheffield.

As the total number of MCMs in SQL Server in the United States is only 81 (plus 10 Microsoft Certified Architects, a higher certification), SSG can claim to have 5% of the nation’s total MCMs on staff. Not bad!

So why is the MCM a big deal? As Microsoft explains:

The Microsoft masters-level certifications validate the deepest level of product expertise, in addition to the ability to design and build the most innovative solutions for complex, on-premises and hybrid enterprise environments using Microsoft technologies. If you are looking for individuals with the deepest level of technical expertise, who can create solutions using multiple Microsoft technologies, you’re looking for an MCM, MCSM, or MCA. They have validated skills that remain valuable in the industry today and for as long as the technologies they’re certified on are being used in the industry.

The Microsoft Certified Master was retired on Jan. 1, 2014. But, it is still an indication of validated expertise in SQL Server. And expertise here is much more significant than saying you have expertise in grilling hamburgers. Even before one could start on the MCM certification, candidates needed a prior expert-level certification.

Certification Process

From the same Microsoft site:

IT professionals who achieved MCM certification would have passed the MCM knowledge exam and the MCM lab exam, which tested their ability to design and build the most innovative solutions for complex on-premises, off-premises, and hybrid enterprise environments using Microsoft technologies.
Certification prerequisites:

  • Five or more years of hands-on experience installing, configuring, and troubleshooting one of the following technologies:
    • Exchange
    • Lync
    • SQL Server
    • Windows Server Active Directory
  • One or more years of hands-on experience with the current version of the technology
  • Thorough understanding of the technology’s design and architecture
  • Thorough understanding of Active Directory, Domain Name System (DNS), and other core network services related to the technology

A Microsoft Certified Master gives you peace of mind. You can be confident he or she has superior understanding of the technology. When it comes to your invaluable data systems, why would you want anything less than the best? The MCM is shorthand for experience and knowledge. The SSG team has plenty of both.

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