The path towards getting Azure Certified

 

Azure certifications offer IT professionals an edge in this cloud-based and connected world. Job seekers and seasoned professionals alike can use Azure certifications to help advance their career—in their existing organization and role or in new ones—earn recognition, and validate their technical knowledge and abilities in current and future industry job roles. And organizations can use certifications to identify the talent they need and build the technical skills of their workforce.

There is clear knowledge that exhibiting and certifying your knowledge of specialized cloud roles through Microsoft Azure certifications is a surefire way to propel your IT career forward, however there are still plenty of individuals who are unsure about the different Azure certifications that would best suit their needs of the hour. 

In order to assist you in picking the certification that best suits your needs, we are here with another comprehensive guide that covers everything you must know about the Azure Certification Path – a description of various Azure certifications, pricing, scope, etc. 

We are aware that choosing your Azure certification can oftentimes feel like a minefield, so this article aims to alleviate your qualms and make your journey to becoming Azure certified easy.  

 

Azure Certification Levels

Why are Microsoft Azure certifications so important?

Azure is the most widely used cloud computing platform, leading the cloud industry forward globally. A large majority of organizations and enterprises – small and big, have made the leap towards embracing cloud technology. This paradigm shift has also revealed that organizations want to remain competitive as the demand for cloud based and centered solutions grows daily, directly affecting the need for technology professionals with cloud knowledge.

Microsoft has been at forefront of ensuring that the global workforce is prepared to take on this substantial task by validating and certifying top applicants who are the best suited for  a specific job position, according to Microsoft. Microsoft certifications can undoubtedly add value to a candidate’s professional journey as most businesses now prefer to have prospective employees with certifications on tow.

The Various Levels to Azure Certifications

There are four levels of Microsoft certifications Azure Certification path levels, covering beginner to expert level azure cloud certification.

Gain an edge with Azure Certification

Gain an edge with Azure certifications


Important! 2022 Updates  

 

The table below shows the Microsoft Azure Certifications that have been phased out and their corresponding Replacement Exam, announced on March 31st, 2022. 

#  Expired Exam  Replacement Exam 
1  AZ-303 – Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies  AZ-305 exam – Designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions 
2  AZ-304 – Microsoft Azure Architect Design 
3  DA-100 – Analyzing Data with Microsoft Power BI  PL-300 Exam -Microsoft Power BI Data Analyst Exam 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Support Engineer for Connectivity Specialty (AZ – 720) is the new certification exam that is launched by Microsoft Azure. 


Azure Fundamental Level Certifications 

Get hired, stay ahead, be productive, and receive the recognition you deserve with Microsoft Certified: Fundamentals. These highly marketable, industry-respected certifications offer foundational training and exams that provide a practical, high-level overview of Microsoft technology and validate your up-to-date knowledge of the topics.

Whether you’re a technical professional, student, or business professional, Azure fundamentals certification are designed to help you accelerate your progress, boost your career, and stay current with evolving cloud technology trends. It can be the first step on your journey for role-based or specialty certifications, but it isn’t a prerequisite for any of them.

Code Fundamentals-Level Certifications
AZ-900 Microsoft Certified: Azure Fundamentals
DP-900 Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Fundamentals
AI-900 Microsoft Certified: Azure AI Fundamentals
SC-900 Microsoft Security, Compliance, and Identity Fundamentals Azure

Microsoft Certified: Azure Fundamentals (AZ-900) 

Learn the basics of Microsoft Azure, the cloud trusted by 95 percent of Fortune 500 companies. Gain understanding of cloud computing concepts, the range of Azure services, and the differences between public, private, and hybrid clouds. Recommended for early career cloud professionals and aspiring students.

RequirementsExam AZ-900: Microsoft Azure Fundamentals 

Prerequisites: None 

 Skills Covered 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Fundamentals (DP-900) 

Take the next step in your cloud career by learning the foundational concepts you need to confidently contribute to an organization’s data-driven decision making and processes. Topics include relational data, nonrelational data, big data, and analytics. Recommended for early career data management professionals and aspiring students.

Requirements: Exam DP-900: Microsoft Azure Data Fundamentals 

Prerequisites: None 

Skills Covered 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure AI Fundamentals (AI-900) 

Master the basics of AI on Azure and gain the foundation to advance your career in this exciting field. This certification demonstrates your knowledge of common AI and machine learning workloads and the Azure services needed to run them. Recommended for early career AI professionals and aspiring students.

Requirements: Exam AI-900: Microsoft Azure AI Fundamentals 

Prerequisites: None 

Skills Covered: 

 

Microsoft Certified: Security, Compliance, and Identity Fundamentals (SC-900) 

Advance your knowledge on a range of cybersecurity topics and build a foundation for advanced certifications that prepare you for in-demand roles in security operations, identity and access management, and information protection. Recommended for early career IT security professionals and aspiring students.

Requirements: Exam SC-900: Microsoft Security, Compliance, and Identity Fundamentals

Prerequisites: None 

Skills Covered


Azure Associate-level certifications 

  

Code Associate-Level Certifications
AZ-104 Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate
AZ-204 Microsoft Certified: Azure Developer Associate
DP-300 Microsoft Certified: Azure Database Administrator Associate
AZ-500 Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate
AZ-700 Microsoft Certified: Azure Network Engineer Associate
DP-203 Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Engineer Associate
AI-102 Microsoft Certified: Azure AI Engineer Associate
AZ-600 Microsoft Certified: Azure Stack Hub Operator Associate
AZ-800 + AZ801 Microsoft Certified: Windows Server Hybrid Administrator Associate
DP-100 Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Scientist Associate
DP-500  Microsoft Certified: Azure Enterprise Data Analyst Associate
SC-200  Microsoft Certified: Security Operations Analyst Associate
SC-300 Microsoft Certified: Identity and Access Administrator Associate

Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate (AZ-104) 

 Learn to manage Microsoft Azure identities and governance; implement and manage storage; deploy and manage Azure compute resources; configure and manage virtual networking; and monitor and back up Azure resources in this 4-days Microsoft Certified:  Azure Administrator Associate course. 

 Requirements: Exam AZ-104: Microsoft Azure Administrator 

Prerequisites: None 

Skills Covered 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Developer Associate (AZ-204) 

This Microsoft Azure Developer Associate certification course teaches developers how to create end-to-end solutions in Microsoft Azure. Students will learn how to implement Azure compute solutions, create Azure Functions, implement and manage web apps, develop solutions utilizing Azure storage, implement authentication and authorization, and secure their solutions by using KeyVault and Managed Identities. 

Requirements: Exam AZ-204: Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure 

Prerequisites: None 

Skills Covered 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Database Administrator Associate (DP-300) 

If you understand the transformation from on-premises databases to cloud data services—and the cloud database technologies available to you with Azure—now is the time to showcase the value you add to your organization as a database administrator with the Microsoft Certified: Azure Database Administrator Associate credential. 

RequirementsExam DP-300: Administering Relational Databases on Microsoft Azure 

Prerequisites: Microsoft says people eyeing this cert should understand all the concepts covered in DP-900 Exam for the Microsoft Azure Data Fundamentals certification. 

Skills Covered 

After completing this course, students will be able to: 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate (AZ-500) 

 If your responsibilities as part of a larger team include maintaining the security posture, identifying and remediating vulnerabilities by using a variety of security tools, implementing threat protection, and responding to security incident escalations, this Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate could be the certification for you. 

Requirements: Exam AZ-500: Microsoft Azure Security Technologies 

Prerequisites: None officially, but strong scripting and automation chops plus familiarity with networking, virtualization, and cloud are needed for the exam. 

Skills Covered 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Scientist Associate (DP-100) 

 A data scientist promotes a data-driven culture using rigorous scientific methodology and algorithms to discover and resolve business problems and to pursue opportunities to help achieve their organization’s goals. 

If this describes you, your skill set, and your passion for data, the Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Scientist Associate certification is made for you. 

RequirementsExam DP-100: Designing and Implementing a Data Science Solution on Azure 

Prerequisites: None, but test-takers typically have a history with computer science, math, and statistics. 

Skills Covered 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Engineer Associate (DP-203) 

 Data engineer professionals know that cloud analytics is a critical first step to resilient business transformation, and they spend their days unlocking data and putting it to work for key insights and ground-breaking value. If you have these skills and want to prove them, check out this Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Engineer Associate certification course. 

RequirementsExam DP-203: Data Engineering on Microsoft Azure  

Prerequisites: None, but you’ll need to know basically every data-related Azure service come test time. 

Skills Covered 

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure AI Engineer Associate (AI-102) 

Take your AI skills to the next level with the Microsoft Certified: Azure AI Engineer Associate credential. 

Gain expertise and skills needed to embed artificial intelligence capabilities into apps, including Cognitive Services, natural language processing, and conversational AI with the Azure AI Engineer Associate certification. 

RequirementsExam AI-102: Designing and Implementing a Microsoft Azure AI Solution 

Prerequisites: None, but if you’re coming from a non-technical background, you’ll need to learn Python and software development and get studied up on data science, math, and machine learning. 

Skills Covered 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Network Engineer Associate (AZ-700)

If you plan, implement, and maintain Azure networking solutions, including hybrid networking, connectivity, routing, security, and private access to Azure services, be sure to check this Microsoft Certified: Azure Network Engineer Associate certification out. 

RequirementsExam AZ-700: Designing and Implementing Microsoft Azure Networking Solutions

Prerequisites: Successful Azure Network Engineers start this role with experience in enterprise networking, on-premises or cloud infrastructure and network security.

Skills Covered

Microsoft Certified: Azure Stack Hub Operator Associate (AZ-600)

Azure Stack Hub operators provide cloud services to their end users or customers from within their own datacenter using Azure Stack Hub. Candidates for the Azure Stack Hub Operator Associate certification have subject matter expertise in providing infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) offering to end users or customers from within their own datacenter using Azure Stack Hub.

Requirements: Exam AZ-600: Configuring and Operating a Hybrid Cloud with Microsoft Azure Stack Hub

Prerequisites: Successful Azure Stack Hub students have prior experience with operating systems, virtualization, cloud infrastructure, storage structures, and networking.

Skills Covered

Microsoft Certified: Azure Enterprise Data Analyst Associate (DP-500)

Data Analysts help businesses to maximize the value of their data
assets using Microsoft Power BI. The new Azure Enterprise Data Analyst Associate certification is a key step for professionals who take that data from its various sources across the enterprise and then model and analyze it to inform and support effective business decisions.

Requirements: Exam DP-500: Designing and Implementing Enterprise-Scale Analytics Solutions Using Microsoft Azure and Microsoft Power BI

Prerequisites: A foundational knowledge of core data concepts and how they’re implemented using Azure data services.

Skills Covered

Microsoft Certified: Security Operations Analyst Associate (SC-200)

The Microsoft security operations analyst collaborates with organizational stakeholders to secure information technology systems for the organization. Their goal is to reduce organizational risk by rapidly remediating active attacks in the environment, advising on improvements to threat protection practices, and referring violations of organizational policies to appropriate stakeholders. Responsibilities include threat management, monitoring, and response by using a variety of security solutions across their environment.

Requirements: Exam SC-200: Microsoft Security Operations Analyst

Prerequisites:

  • Basic understanding of Microsoft 365
  • Fundamental understanding of Microsoft security, compliance, and identity products
  • Intermediate understanding of Windows 10
  • Familiarity with Azure services, specifically Azure SQL Database and Azure Storage
  • Familiarity with Azure virtual machines and virtual networking
  • Basic understanding of scripting concepts.

Skills Covered

  • Explain how Microsoft Defender for Endpoint can remediate risks in your environment
  • Create a Microsoft Defender for Endpoint environment
  • Configure Attack Surface Reduction rules on Windows 10 devices
  • Perform actions on a device using Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
  • Investigate domains and IP addresses in Microsoft Defender for Endpoint

Microsoft Certified: Identity and Access Administrator Associate (SC-300)

The Microsoft identity and access administrator designs, implements, and operates an organization’s identity and access management systems by using Azure Active Directory (Azure AD). They configure and manage authentication and authorization of identities for users, devices, Azure resources, and applications.

Requirements: Exam SC-300: Microsoft Identity and Access Administrator

Prerequisites: Security best practices and industry security requirements such as defense in depth, least privileged access, shared responsibility, and zero trust model.

Skills Covered

  • Implement an identity management solution
  • Implement an authentication and access management solutions
  • Implement access management for apps
  • Plan and implement an identity governance strategy

 


Azure Expert-level certifications

Code Expert-Level Certifications
AZ-305 Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert
AZ-400 Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert
SC-100 Microsoft Certified: Cybersecurity Architect Expert

Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert (AZ-305)

The Azure solutions architect is key to all of this and more, and the updated Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert certification better aligns to the skills of real-world solutions architects and the tasks they perform.

RequirementsExam AZ-305: Designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions, which replaces Exam AZ-303: Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies and Exam AZ-304: Microsoft Azure Architect Design on March 31, 2022

Prerequisites: You must have Exam AZ-104: Microsoft Azure Administration in the bag before attempting to take down this colossal certification and its demanding exam.

Skills Covered

 

Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert (AZ-400)

Modern IT emphasizes working with people, processes, and technologies to continuously deliver business value. If you have these skills, Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert is the role-based certification for you.

This expert-level Azure certification a good fit for you if your responsibilities include designing and implementing strategies for collaboration, code, infrastructure, and source control, along with security, compliance, continuous integration, testing, delivery, monitoring, and feedback.

RequirementsExam AZ-400: Designing and Implementing Microsoft DevOps Solutions

Prerequisites: You’ll need either the Azure Administrator Associate or Azure Developer Associate cert before taking on the DevOps Engineer Expert certification.

Skills Covered

Microsoft Certified: Cybersecurity Architect Expert (SC-100)

The Microsoft cybersecurity architect has subject matter expertise in designing and evolving the cybersecurity strategy to protect an organization’s mission and business processes across all aspects of the enterprise architecture.

If this is your skill set, the newly launched Microsoft Cybersecurity Architect Expert certification is the credential you need!

RequirementsExam AZ-400: Designing and Implementing Microsoft DevOps Solutions

Prerequisites: Advanced experience and knowledge in identity and access, platform protection, security operations, securing data and securing applications.

Skills Covered

 


Azure Specialty certifications

Code Specialty Certifications
AZ-220 Microsoft Certified: Azure IoT Developer Specialty
AZ-120 Microsoft Certified: Azure for SAP Workloads Specialty
DP420 Microsoft Certified: Cosmos DB Specialty*
AZ-140 Microsoft Certified: Azure Virtual Desktop Specialty
AZ-720 Microsoft Certified: Azure Support Engineer for Connectivity Specialty*

Microsoft Certified: Azure IoT Developer Specialty (AZ-220)

Candidates for this certification should have subject matter expertise implementing the configuration and coding tasks required to create and maintain the cloud and edge portions of an IoT solution.

Responsibilities for this role include deploying physical devices, configuring and maintaining them by using cloud services, and maintaining and troubleshooting the configuration throughout the device lifecycle.

RequirementsExam AZ-220: Microsoft Azure IoT Developer

Prerequisites: There are no official prerequisites, but you’ll need to understand the ins and outs of IoT solutions and be fluent in one Azure-supported language, including C#, Node, C, or Python.

Skills Covered

Microsoft Certified: Azure for SAP Workloads Specialty (AZ-120)

Candidates for this certification should be architects or engineers with extensive experience and knowledge of the SAP system landscape and industry standards that are specific to the initial migration or integration and the long-term operation of an SAP solution on Microsoft Azure.

Responsibilities for an architect or an engineer for Azure for SAP Workloads include making recommendations on services and adjusting resources as appropriate for optimal resiliency, performance, scale, provision, size, and monitoring.

Requirements: Exam AZ-120: Planning and Administering Microsoft Azure for SAP Workloads

Prerequisites: You should have solid knowledge and experience developing apps for Azure and working with Azure Cosmos DB.

Skills Covered

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Cosmos DB Developer Specialty (DP-420)

Candidates for the Azure Cosmos DB Developer Specialty certification should have subject matter expertise designing, implementing, and monitoring cloud-native applications that store and manage data.

Responsibilities for this role include designing and implementing data models and data distribution, loading data into an Azure Cosmos DB database, and optimizing and maintaining the solution. These professionals integrate the solution with other Azure services. They also design, implement, and monitor solutions that consider security, availability, resilience, and performance requirements.

Requirements: Exam DP-420: Designing and Implementing Cloud-Native Applications Using Microsoft Azure Cosmos DB

Prerequisites: You should have experience with operating systems for SAP applications and databases, Azure administration, infrastructure as code, cloud infrastructure, high availability, disaster recovery, backup, security, and data protection.

Skills Covered

 

Microsoft Certified: Azure Virtual Desktop Specialty (AZ-140)

Candidates for the Azure Virtual Desktop Specialty certification are server or desktop administrators with subject matter expertise in designing, implementing, managing, and maintaining Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop experiences and remote apps for any device.

To deliver these experiences, they work closely with Azure administrators, Azure architects, Microsoft 365 administrators, and Azure security engineers.

Requirements:  Exam AZ-140: Configuring and Operating Microsoft Azure Virtual Desktop

Prerequisites: AZ-900T00: Microsoft Azure Fundamentals

Skills Covered

 

Growing your skills with Azure can help you turn ideas into solutions with more than 200 services to build, deploy, and manage applications—in the cloud, on-premises, and at the edge—using the tools and frameworks of your choice. Get started on your Azure learning path today and check out our Azure Certification Path 2022 available for download.


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Get Azure Certified in 2022