Change is the new governor of IT. Constant innovation has opened many doors and unveiled valuable technologies that benefit both professionals and organizations. But tech’s rapid advancement also has consequences—primarily, the demand for new skills has outpaced skill availability.
Though skills gaps are creating problems for much of the industry—3 out of every 4 IT departments are currently impacted—the quest to innovate is far from slowing down. But skills gaps don’t have to win. Instead, technology and IT training providers must embrace the industry disruption and address global skills shortages directly.
Microsoft is one technology provider that has thoughtfully adapted their curriculum to boost Azure skills adoption. And to further speed up Azure consumption, Global Knowledge has stepped in to support Microsoft’s evolution and their new strategy. We’re fighting change with change. And here’s how we did it.
A new Azure strategy for 2019
This year, Global Knowledge has established itself as Microsoft’s most innovative learning partner by achieving the following three milestones:
- We have the broadest and deepest Azure portfolio in the world
- We are agile and quick to market with new Azure courses and resources
- We have delivered tangible Azure results
Cloud computing is the No. 1 area of investment this year for IT professionals. With this in mind, Global Knowledge has witnessed the potential of the Microsoft Azure portfolio and supports the recent alignment to role-based courses and certifications. This evolution was implemented to align with specific jobs, not just core technologies, and to achieve better business outcomes.
How Global Knowledge strengthens Microsoft’s new curriculum
With Microsoft’s revamped strategy, Global Knowledge had to act quickly. We were first to market with the new Azure curriculum. We also revamped our Azure learning paths to align with the role-based certifications. We took Microsoft’s upgraded learning assets, cultivated them and deployed them on a wider and more strategic scale. Basically, we put Microsoft resources in front of the people who need them most—the IT professionals who will benefit greatly from the skills gained through Microsoft’s curriculum and certifications.
The results have been positive. This year, over 3,200 students worldwide have taken a core Azure course aligned to a new certification. We have also trained 1,263 more Azure students year over year.
Global Knowledge also created three Azure exclusive boot camps that nobody else in the industry offers. Azure Solution Architect Boot Camp (AZ-300 and AZ-301) has been the most successful of our new boot camps, as it continues to gain momentum.
Greater access to Microsoft free courses
Budgets and time limitations can be a hindrance to continual learning. That’s why we’ve increased access to free, self-paced Microsoft courses in the form of MOOCs and Learning as a Service (LaaS). We’ve taken steps to make these courses more easily available to help fill in the gaps between formal training courses.
Learning modalities that support Microsoft
Global Knowledge also offers a wealth of delivery formats to meet the needs of all learners. Authorized Microsoft courses are available in the following modalities:
- Instructor-led training (ILT) and virtual instructor-led training (vILT)
- Blended Live (Global Knowledge exclusive)
- Master Classes (Global Knowledge exclusive)
- Microsoft Cloud Workshops (MCW)
- MOOCs, Individual and via Learning as a Service
- Azure Boot Camps (Global Knowledge exclusive)
- Azure Admin Transition Course (Global Knowledge exclusive)
- MOC On-Demand (MOD)
Nearly 4,100 students have taken an Azure MOC, MCW, MOD or MOOC, a 45% increase over 2018.
Microsoft courses are also the cornerstone of our recently-released All Access IT Skills Subscription, which includes 12 months of unlimited access to classroom and on-demand courses.
Prepare the right way for Azure role-based certifications
To aid the certification process and help more IT professionals get Azure-certified, we published three “how-to” Certification Prep Guides:
These guides are deep dives into the role-based certifications and provide detailed information on the exams and tips for how to prepare. They also outline next steps after you attain your desired certification.
With all of these actions, the partnership between Global Knowledge and Microsoft has been strengthened, which means more opportunities and a more tailored skills solution for the learner. With Microsoft’s new strategy and Global Knowledge’s content, modalities and access to subject matter experts, significant steps have been taken to chip away at debilitating IT skills gaps.
Global Knowledge named 2019 Microsoft Learning Partner of the Year
Global Knowledge has recently been recognized as the 2019 Microsoft Learning Partner of the Year. The Microsoft Learning Partner of the Year Awards recognize Microsoft training partners who have demonstrated excellence in innovation and implementation of customer solutions based on Microsoft technology. Over 2,900 entrants from 115 countries vied for these prestigious awards.
We are proud of our strengthened partnership with Microsoft, which has successfully put more learning resources in front of more tech professionals. With one Microsoft student trained every 10 minutes, we believe we play an invaluable role in the development and advancement of Microsoft skills in the workplace.