Get your MCITP certification before 2014…

Did you know that MCITP certifications are going to be phased out over the course of the next couple of years?  

Microsoft is certainly one of the most visible and prolific corporations on the planet; this is why it’s never a bad idea to have some MS-specific certifications. Unbeknownst to many however, one of their more well-known server administration preparation programs (MCITP) is undergoing changes. More specifically, the MCITP certification exam offered by Microsoft is ‘phased out’ in lieu of more recent builds and programs. However, the certification is still going to be available through 2014, which is why you should strongly consider ‘scooping up’ this cert if you’re the kind of IT professional who wants to possess a strong, unique portfolio of career accomplishments.

Having said that, there are some very good reasons why MS is discontinuing their MCITP program. For starters, MCITP is directly tied to one of its flagship products, Windows Server 2008. Now that Windows Server 2012 has arrived, it is being formally recognized as the successor to the 2008 edition; naturally, this also means that any related training programs will need to be updated as well. This doesn’t mean that the MCITP certification is useless; in fact, it’s entirely within reason so assume that a great number of businesses, corporations, institutions and groups will continue to use WS 2008. In other words, those who are actually have an MCITP cert may find themselves in great demand after 2014 (once the program has been discontinued) by companies who have yet to upgrade to Windows Server 2012.

Why would any individual or group avoid the WS 2012 you ask?  Since the latest version of the windows server software is essentially helping to usher in Cloud Computing in a major way, moving to it might not be on the minds of some business owners and managers. As many across the web have already noted, Windows Server 2012 is basically Microsoft’s attempt at producing an accessible Cloud OS solution that can compete with UNIX / Linux-based models. Needless to say, this is a great (and wholly desirable development) but it simply isn’t on everyone’s radar as of yet. Likewise, Windows Server 2012 is bringing a new type of file system to the forefront, ReFS, which seeks to improve upon NTFS; certainly this will impact those organizations that have extensive data aggregation setups to deal with. Moreover, WS 2012 is not offering support for computers with Itanium-based processors. Given that a great deal of businesses currently utilize this type of hardware it’s entirely logical to also assume that they might not want to upgrade their hardware immediately (or all at once) just to appease the new software build.

Individuals who are particularly proactive in their pursuit of certifications will obviously want to remain up-to-date with the programs that support the latest software, but one shouldn’t rule out older systems. The truth is, there might very well be some excellent (and profitable) opportunities for those IT specialists who are able to work with non-cloud infrastructure. Does this mean that you should immediately quit researching your cloud certifications? Absolutely not!  The point is that training industries, software development and corporate strategies don’t always shift together in a neat, organized fashion; IT workers need to ensure that they have the appropriate tools and training on hand to meet the real challenges that they will face. It is strongly advised that all IT pros become very well-versed in as many different facets of their trade as possible, cloud computing being one of the most visible and important cross-sections out there.

Having an MCITP certification on your resume’ simply allows you to move into business sectors where change and progress might be a little slower or more deliberate. IT personnel who understand this will not only be able to make an impact with these types of organizations, but they will also emerge with more responsibilities and perhaps take a more central role in their company as well. It’s also worth mentioning that those who possess an intimate knowledge of both MCITP as well as certifications designed for WS 2012 will likely become invaluable employees for those firms who are transitioning to the cloud. 

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