It was announced the Office 365 exams (70-346 & 70-347) are being retired, here are some further details and a few suggestions for those who are interested in these exams and what comes next. I took these exams earlier in the year, so I have a big interest in this topic, I don't have any insider information but have read up on the available information and I know even a month later some IT Pros have missed this news. This is all may be subject to change. I'll update this post with more information as needed.
February Update: Exam retirement extended until April 30, 2019. See this post for details.
Announced around Ignite 2018, Microsoft launched the new job role certifications and training. This is to better reflect the work and tasks the people do in their day to day roles and the level of expertise that this requires as well as how this is tested.
Here is a summary I have put together:
Existing 70-346: Managing Office 365 Identities and Requirements exam is retired March 31, 2019
Existing 70-347: Enabling Office 365 Services exam is retired March 31, 2019
New replacement exams MS-100: Microsoft 365 Identity and Services and MS-101 Microsoft 365 Mobility and Security will soon be in beta
No apparent upgrade or transition path/exam is available because existing exams are considered equivalent to an 'associate' level where the new exams are an 'expert' level
New certification roles - Microsoft 365 Enterprise Administrator as well as Modern Desktop Administrator plus an option of Microsoft 365 Certified Fundamentals with more roles to come
No MCSE or MCSA
Content is broader covering all the elements of Microsoft 365 and how they work together
Here is how to navigate the new Microsoft 365 Enterprise Administrator role:
The immediate takeaway is that Microsoft 365 is the future and IT Pros should be looking closely at the overall value this provides and aligning their skills with this. There will be further news to come but getting more familiar with Microsoft 365 is time well spent!
What if you have started with the Office 365 exams already? If you are after the MCSA: Office 365 certification, you have until the end of March 2019 to complete both exams, assuming Microsoft doesn't extend this deadline. This still might be worth doing but it depends, without knowing what other roles might be added, it could be worth waiting, especially if there are limited training funds available and if you want to more future-proof your qualifications.
While the Microsoft 365 Enterprise Administrator role is definitely worth aiming for, it's going to be a bigger investment compared to the current exams just because of the extended scope, the additional complexity and expertise it will require. Microsoft does see this as a significant opportunity for IT Pros and a way to stand out in the job market.
The exams retiring also means that the MCSA: Office 365 certification is retiring as well right? Also, do you know if the MCSA: Windows 10 will be retiring with the advent of the MD-100 and MD-101 exams?
Hey William, in case you didn't find this out already, yes the MCSA: Office 365 certification is retiring, the same applies for the MCSA: Windows 10, both retire March 31, 2019. Check the blog below for updates, there is still a lot developing news around this and the new role-based certifications.
Microsoft 365 Certified: Teamwork Administrator Associate
Microsoft 365 Certified: Messaging Administrator Associate
Microsoft 365 Certified: Security Administrator Associate
Microsoft 365 Certified: Fundamentals
I put more details in this article, in case it helps - Microsoft 365 Training and Certification. To be clear though there is no upgrade or transition exam from the MCSA: Office 365 to one of these new certifications. That's not to say there won't be any overlap with some of the new exams and knowledge you have acquired already as part of your studies.