What is the Microsoft Azure Active Directory?

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What is the Microsoft Azure Active Directory?

The Microsoft Azure Active Directory (in short: “Azure AD”) is a cloud-based service by Microsoft. It is used for the management of identities and respective access rights. These access rights can apply to:

  • a corporate network/intranet and proprietary applications that are cloud-based
  • external services/applications by Microsoft like the Azure portal as such and Microsoft Office 365. Azure AD is also used in connection with third party SaaS (Software as a service) applications.

Microsoft Azure Active Directory

Who uses the Microsoft Azure Active Directory?

 

Azure AD users are therefore typically IT administrators, App/software developers, as well as, subscribers to the already mentioned Microsoft Products or third party Saas offers.

 

Which kind of licenses are available?

 

Currently, there are five different licenses available for the Microsoft Azure Active Directory/Azure AD. They offer several access levels to Azure Active Directory features:

  1. Free
  2. Basic
  3. Premium P1 (includes the features included in “Free” and “Basis” plus additional features like advanced administration and more). Microsoft also offers a free 30-day Azure Active Directory Premium trial to get you started and to “try out” the additional features that go beyond the “Free” and “Basic” options.
  4. Premium P2 (all the features of Free, Basis and Premium 1, plus Azure AD Identity Protection and Privileged Identity Management )
  5. Feature licenses on a “Pay as you go” basis.

 

How can I learn more about working with the Microsoft Azure and the Microsoft Azure Active Directory?

 

TechSherpas offers several training courses relating to Microsoft Azure and the Microsoft Azure Active Directory. Among these are, for example:

 

  • 10993: Integrating on-premises Identity Infrastructure with Microsoft Azure – for IT professionals with already existing knowledge/experience with Microsoft Azure
  • 10992: Integrating On-Premises Core Infrastructure with Microsoft Azure – for professionals in the areas of IT and DevOps (development operations) with a good knowledge of on-premises technologies and at least basic knowledge in the area of cloud technologies
  • 10979: Microsoft Azure Fundamentals On-Demand – for IT professionals (e.g. administrators, developers) with limited knowledge regarding cloud technologies. If you are interested in a more advanced course that requires a better knowledge of Azure and cloud technologies, you might want to consider taking this one first.

 

These are just a few selected courses from our course catalog. Do you have any questions about our courses or about which course might be the best for your skill level? Just contact us, we will be happy to help.

 

Sources:
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/fundamentals/active-

 

Land Your Dream Job in IT: Certification vs. Work Experience

You have set your sight on a career in Information Technology (IT), and now you want to land your dream job. As with most dream jobs, you are going to have to meet certain minimum requirements to help you succeed in your search for a position.

Many jobs require a specific college education. While there are various college programs that offer IT-related degrees, a degree is not necessarily a requirement. What actually is a requirement is:

  • an IT certificationland your dream job
  • work experience

or

  • IT certification together with work experience

A certification or work experience: What is more important to land your dream job in IT?

One possible answer regarding what is more important could be to check the IT job offers in the various internet job portals. They will help to give you a general overview about what potential employers expect from their IT staff.

It makes sense to assume that hands-on work experience in IT gets more important with an increasing seniority of the offered position. In contrast, it is rather unlikely that a lot of such work experience is expected or even required, when an employer need to fill an entry-level position.

If you are aiming for an entry-level position and do not have any or only little related work experience to offer, then a qualifying IT certification becomes of major importance. On the other hand, for senior positions keep in mind: the more skill, responsibility and complexity a position in IT involves, the more employers will look at the qualification (i.e. up-to-date and relevant certifications) of their potential candidates.

In other words, work experience and certification can both add significant value to your application and CV.

Benefits of certification and work experience

If you are in the lucky situation and able to add a current IT certification as well as related work-experience to your qualifications – congratulations! That should get you quite a head-start above other applicants that want to land a dream job as well.

If that is not the case, an IT certification can be obtained much quicker than work experience that will actually count. Techsherpas offers a range of certification training as Boot Camp Courses. This means they provide their students with qualified hands-on training and the knowledge they need to pass a certification exam within just a few days.

That means that if you already have IT related work experience but find out during your job search that the respective official certification is one potential requirement, then you can take care of that within a relatively short time.

Gaining a certain amount of work experience naturally takes its time, but it does have benefits: If you already have work experience, it shows your potential employer that your skills have already been tried and tested in an actual work environment. It also means you have been able to put your theoretical knowledge to practical use.

Even if you already have extensive work experience, you might still want to consider rounding it off and updating it with a current IT certification to land your dream job. IT professionals work in an area that is constantly evolving, so knowledge and skills need to be up-to-date. For that reason, there may even be a chance that your employer is willing to cover the tuition costs.

If you have your certification but no work experience yet, do not worry: Everybody needs to start somewhere, and be it with an entry-level or junior position. That might not quite be your dream job, but at least you will have your certification to get your proverbial foot in the door.

 

Sources/further reading:

http://blog.skillset.com/career-building/decide-earn-work-experience-get-certification/

https://blog.mettl.com/assessment-technology/do-certifications-matter-more-than-work-experience

https://www.techsherpas.com/certifications/

The Benefits of Investing in Employee Training

It is nothing new that the right employees are a key factor for the success of a business. Recruiting the right talent and building a successful team can be a long and expensive challenge. As an employer, you want your staff to be skilled, motivated and productive. One good strategy to achieve this is to invest in the right employee training. This is especially true in the area of IT training, because information technology is an integral and constantly evolving part of most organizations.

 

employee training

8 good reasons for IT-related employee training

  • Information technology is a field that undergoes frequent development and change. You need to make sure that the knowledge and skill-set of your employees remain up-to-date. This helps them and your company to keep up with these developments.
  • More and more IT professionals understand the necessity of constant education, certification and training. Offer them the opportunity to continue their professional development as a part of your staff. This can be an important incentive when it comes to recruiting the right people.
  • When you find the right employees for the right team it is in your best interested to keep them motivated, so they stay productive and do not feel the need to change employers.
  • Paying for employee training gives you the option to steer their further education into the direction that suits the IT and computer requirements (operation systems, networks and security measures) of your organization.
  • Granting paid IT training (that might even lead to a particular certification) can be a great bonus and a sign of appreciation that benefits the employee as well as the employer.
  • After receiving additional training, the employee can continue and share their enhanced knowledge with other (junior) team members. This multiplies the benefit of your financial investment in the employee training. It might even have an additional positive team building effect.
  • Additional IT skills and certifications can be the right way to allow a staff member the transition into a role with more responsibilities and increased knowledge/skill requirements.
  • You can specifically target a knowledge/skill gap and thereby enhance performance where it is needed.

 

How to handle the risk of an employee leaving shortly after you paid for his/her training and losing your investment

  • You can set up an agreement between the employee and the company that links the payment for their additional training to a minimum staying duration with the company afterwards. You can stipulate that they otherwise will have to reimburse the company for a part or the whole amount of that has been invested in their training.
  • Generally, keep in mind: An employee who is happy with their workplace is less likely to change employers.

 

Have a look at our course catalog to get a better idea about how you can invest in the development of your employees. Do you need additional information or have further questions? – Let us know!

 

 

Sources:
https://managementhelp.org/training/basics/reasons-for-training.htm

http://www.skills.sa.gov.au/for-employers-business/training-your-staff/benefits-of-training-your-staff

Great System Administrator Certifications to Boost Your Career

System Administrator Certifications

More and more businesses and organizations depend on complex IT systems for their daily communications and workflow; therefore, professionals who hold a System Administrator Certification know how to manage and maintain these systems are in high demand. This demand is not likely to change any time soon. In order to keep up with the new developments in IT technology, it is important for professionals to keep themselves educated and to keep up with the current IT certifications as credentials for their expertise. This is an overview of several great system administrator certifications that will give your IT career a boost:

System Administrator Certifications

Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE)

The MCSE or “Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert” certification is part of the Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) program. It offers the following five focus areas with different key technologies:

TechSherpas offers several options for MCSE certification training. Find out more about them here.

 

CompTIA Network+

CompTIA Server+ is a vendor-neutral certification that ranks high among the system administrator certifications as well. Here at TechSherpas we offers a variety of different CompTIA learning solutions for different levels.

If you are an entry-level computer support professional looking for a career as a network administrator, then CompTIA Network+ might be a good choice for you. You should possess basic Windows end-user computer skills to successfully participate in this course.

 

CompTIA Linux+™ Powered by LPI

TechSherpas CompTIA training course, CompTIA Linux+™ Powered by LPI prepares you to become a CompTIA Linux+™ Certified Professional. When taking this course, you should at least possess a user-level knowledge/experience with the Linux operating system.

TechSherpas also offers several courses that you can take to be prepared:

  • UNIX and Linux: Fundamentals
  • UNIX and Linux: Advanced User
  • CompTIA A+: A Comprehensive Approach (a helpful addition, but not required)

 

C)VDE Certified Virtual Desktop Engineer

If you are already experienced with VMware vSphere (2+ years) but new to the VMware Horizon Suite, the C)VDE Certified Virtual Desktop Engineer training course will familiarize you with the installation and configuration of Horizon View, as well as, the components. The successful completion will put you above the level of VCP-DT.

 

For more information on which training course is best for you, or for any other related questions, simply send us a message or give us a call!

 

Sources:
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/learning/mcse-certification.aspx
https://www.techsherpas.com/technology/comptia/
https://certification.comptia.org/

The Best Cybersecurity and Information Security Certifications

Information Security CertificationsLet’s begin with “Information Security” and “Cybersecurity”.  There are two expressions that people often use somewhat interchangeably. They are not quite the same though, as we have already explained in one or our previous blog posts. In any case, both have – naturally – the security aspect in common. This means, that if you are planning for a professional career in this field, not only are your knowledge and skill set of particular importance, but also are your reputable credentials, such as, Cybersecurity and Information Security Certifications.

Let us have a look at some of the best information security certifications to boost your career as an information security professional.

 

Information Security Certifications

Certified Penetration Testing Engineer (C)PTE)

The Certified Penetration Testing Engineer certification constitutes an upgrade to the Certified Ethical Hacker/CEH. The Techsherpas certification course is based on proven, hands-on penetration testing methods and the Five Key Elements of Pen Testing:

  • Information Gathering
  • Scanning
  • Enumeration
  • Exploitation
  • Reporting

CISM: Certified Information Security Manager

The certification as a CISM/Certified Information Security Manager demonstrates your proficient knowledge and skill set in the field of Information Security Management, such as:

  • Threat analysis and risks
  • Risk and incident management
  • IS security strategy/frameworks
  • Security programs and CISO roles
  • Creation of policies for audit and risk management, compliance and awareness
  • DR and BCP development/deployment/maintenance

 

CompTIA Security+

With Information Security Certifications like CompTIA Security+ you demonstrate the necessary computer security skills to successfully perform your duties in a wide range of IT security-related roles. Such skills are, for example:

  • Identification of the fundamental computer security concepts
  • Identification of (potential) security threats
  • Data management and application
  • Host security management
  • Network security implementation
  • Identification/implementation of access control
  • Identification/implementation of account management security measures
  • Identification/implementation of compliance and operational security measures
  • Certificate and risk management
  • Troubleshooting and management of security incidents.
  • Business continuity and disaster recovery planning

 

CISSO: Certified Information Systems Security Officer

A Certified Information Systems Security Officer (CISSO) demonstrates proficiency in the knowledge and skill set (including industry best practices) that characterize the work of a security manager/security officer, such as:

  • Expertise regarding the in-depth theory of core security concepts, practices, monitoring and compliance
  • Use of a risk-based approach
  • Ability to implement and maintain cost-effective security controls

The CISSO certification training also covers the exam objectives of the CISSP: Certified Information Systems Security Professional

 

C)IHE: Certified Incident Handling Engineer

The Certified Incident Handling Engineer (C)IHE) is directed toward IT professionals, such as incident handlers, system administrators and general security engineers. The training, which also covers the GCIH- GIAC Certified Incident Handler, teaches students:

  • Planning, creation and utilization of systems for attack prevention, detection and response
  • Step-by-step approaches as used by hackers worldwide
  • Identification of the latest attack vectors and implementation of safeguarding measures
  • Incident handling procedures
  • Strategies for each type of attack
  • Recovery measures after an attack

 

Have a look at our public training schedule to find out more about how we can support you to achieve the Cybersecurity and Information Security Certification that is best for your career plans.

 

 

 

Sources:
https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/10708-information-security-certifications.html
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_computer_security_certifications
https://www.darkreading.com/risk/10-security-certifications-to-boost-your-career/d/d-id/1322449?image_number=3
https://www.techsherpas.com/shop/cyber-security/cihe-certified-incident-handling-engineer-on-demand/

What Are The Best Project Management Certifications?

Project Management Certifications

As one of the largest providers for project management certification training, TechSherpas offers a variety of training courses to become a professionally certified project manager. A project management certification can be a great addition to your CV and can polish your credentials as an information technology professional.

But what kind of certifications for project management are there, and which is the right one for you? Keep reading – we have compiled an overview of some of the best project manager certifications.

Project Management Certification: Project Management Professional (PMP)

As we have already discussed in one of our previous blog posts, the Product Management Professional/PMP certification is issued by the Project Management Institute (or: “PMI”). Techsherpas offers Project Management Professional (PMP) certification preparation on a live In-Classroom Learning (ICL) basis, as well as, online as a Virtual Live Training (VTL). We also have an add-on option for an On-Demand (ODL) training video.  This can be added to the purchase of a live class or study that is completely online, at your own pace, with the ODL training. Additional requirements are at least a high school diploma, associate or corresponding secondary degree, as well as, a minimum amount of project management experience.

Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)

CAPM is an entry-level project management certification that the PMI issues as well, but without the additional requirements of the PMP for the certification candidates. You can become a Certified Associate in Project Management with little or even without prior project management experience. The Techsherpas CAPM preparation course is delivered entirely on an On-Demand Learning basis, which allows you to study at your own pace with a schedule that fits your personal requirements. In addition, this allows you to save on those expenses, such as time and travel, that would normally be associated with a course led by a live instructor. 

Certified Scrum Master (CSM)

Like the CAPM preparation training, the Certified Scrum Master (CSM) training course from TechSherpas is available for On-Demand Learning. This means you have a library of training videos with content that includes the following:

  • the Agile Manifesto Principles
  • Scrum Roles Overview
  • Scrum Master and Stake Holders
  • and more

PRINCE2 Practitioner

In order to become a registered PRINCE2 Practitioner, you will need to successfully complete two examination Project Management Training Courses. TechSherpas offers both of them On-Demand:

CompTIA Project+

CompTIA, one of the leading IT industry’s trade associations issues a vendor-neutral professional certification. Our CompTIA Project+ training classes have a duration of five days, and you can participate either in the classroom or online/virtually, both of these would be with a live instructor.

Six Sigma

The Six Sigma methodology is also known as “DMAIC”, which stands for

  • Define
  • Measure
  • Analyze
  • Improve
  • Control

TechSherpas offers two different On-Demand Learning classes for Six Sigma:

Any further questions about Project Management Certifications? Do you need assistance or further information to enroll in one of our classes? Are you interested in a Customized Onsite Training for your organization? Simply contact us.

 

Sources:
https://www.techsherpas.com/technology/project-management/
https://www.techsherpas.com/technology/project-management/pmpcapm/
https://www.pmi.org/-/media/pmi/documents/public/pdf/certifications/project-management-professional-handbook.pdf

How Can a Microsoft Azure Certification Boost Your Career?

More and more businesses are using cloud-computing technology. Therefore, there is an increasing demand for people that possess the required skills better known as a Microsoft Azure Certification. One reason this technology has become popular is its ability to help saving on company investment of server space. Another reason for its popularity is because employees increasingly need to be able to access their files from somewhere else other than their stationary office work space. If you need to show that you possess cloud-computing skills and know how to apply them, a Microsoft Azure Certification provides you with just the right advantage over the job-seeking competition.

Microsoft Azure Certification

Microsoft Azure and the Microsoft Azure Certification

In our recent blog post, we have already elaborated on the six different Microsoft Certification Paths and the Microsoft Certification Map: The MCSA Certification (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) with 17 different focus area certifications that form the stepping stones to achieving that goal.

  • one of the five MCSE (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer) certifications
  • or the MCSD certification, which stands for “Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer.”

Depending on which focus areas and key technologies you focus on while achieving your MCSA Certification, you can set the path towards a Microsoft Azure related MCSE/MCSD certification.

 

Why invest into obtaining an official certification?

It is true: Nowadays, there are many ways to achieve knowledge and to hone one’s skills. One can read books, subscribe to podcasts and newsletters, watch Youtube videos and much more. Theoretically, you might be able to work with Microsoft Azure without any specific certification in that area.

If you have chosen information technology and cloud computing as your actual career fields, then these kinds of self-taught skills are probably not enough to get ahead. Anyone can claim they possess the skills and practical experience, but if you want to make a sustainable career out of those, you are going to need to show corresponding credentials as a recognizable proof of your expertise.

When you are looking for a new job, your CV usually is the first source of information for your potential future employer, and they probably have to decide between a multitude of applicants. A convincing CV is extremely important, because this phase of the application-process is the first hurdle you need to master in order to make it to a personal interview. An official and industry-recognized Microsoft Azure Certification in your CV documents that you have participated in a structured education and made it successfully through the required exams is important. This does not only show your personal dedication, but also provides a certain security for the future employer, that they will be able to rely on you having received your education and certifications by a reputable and recognized provider.

See also:
https://www.techsherpas.com/azure-skills-initiative-and-special-offers/

 

Which of our Virtual Learning Solutions Works Best for You?

Virtual LearningIf you have already looked at our course cataloge and various learning methods and solutions, you will have come across two different virtual learning solutions that we offer:

Both methods allow you to participate in our IT learning courses remotely: from the comfort of your own computer at home, or alternatively at the office. This means that you can save time as well as costs, because you do not have to travel to any particular training location.

Virtual Live Training: Virtual Learning with a Classroom Experience

The main difference between the two methods lies in the scheduling of your study time:

As the name indicates, the student’s participation in the “Virtual Live Training” (or short “VLT”) takes place live, i.e. in real time. The students are part of the same class that is being held at one of the various TechSherpas training facilities on that particular date. The Virtual Live Training participants attend remotely via VOIP technology, and can still benefit from the experience of a classroom environment:

  • Interaction: The students can listen, as well as, ask the instructor questions, just like in a regular class. If necessary, the instructor can even view and take control of the distant desktop with the help of remote desktop software.
  • Face-to-Face experience: With the help of webcams, the students can look at their instructor, as well as, at other students who are attending the class on-site.

Benefiting from the “live” format means that you have to choose among various predetermined dates and adhere to a fixed schedule. This might mean less flexibility regarding your time planning, but the benefit of added flexibility when it comes to class interaction and the option of asking the instructor direct questions.

On-Demand Learning: Virtual Learning when it suits you best

The option of On-Demand Learning offers the greatest flexibility in respect to your learning schedule. This can be a major advantage to those students who need to fit their continuing education into their busy workweek, around family obligations – or both.

The classes consist of prerecorded videos plus exercises. Therefore, there is no instructor present in real-time to answer any questions, but this method allows the participants to set their own study pace. They can pause the videos and take the next lesson when it suits them best.

This scheduling flexibility is probably the deciding criteria when it comes to choosing which of the two remote, virtual learning methods is the best for you. However, if the option of instructor interaction is of particular importance to you, you might want to “test-drive” our On-Demand Learning offer first: Simply send us an email to ondemand@ittraining365.com/blog, and we will send you a special Course Demo Code so you can give it a try.

Sources and further reading:

https://www.techsherpas.com/learning-methods/virtual-live-training/
https://www.techsherpas.com/on-demand/
https://www.techsherpas.com/on-demand-bundles/
https://www.techsherpas.com/on-demand-unlimited/

The Microsoft Office 365 Applications and Services – an Overview (Part 1)

Office 365 applicationsIn last week’s post, we have already given you a first overview of the various Microsoft Office 365 plans and the Office 365 applications and services that are included in those plans.

Below you will find a few more details about the use and the benefits of the different applications and services, so you can make an even better informed choice.

Available Microsoft Office 365 Applications and Services

These are the different applications and services available for Microsoft Office 365 and part of the Office 365 plans. Depending on the particular plan, the variation of the included applications and services differs. In addition, some of the applications are only available for PC, not for Mac.

Applications:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • Outlook
  • OneNote
  • Access (only available for PC)
  • Publisher (only available for PC)

Services:

  • OneDrive
  • Skype
  • Skype for Business
  • SharePoint
  • Exchange
  • Microsoft Teams

A Closer Look at the Different Office 365 Applications

Word, Excel, PowerPoint

Word (for word processing tasks), Excel (spreadsheets for calculation, graphing tools and pivot tables, and PowerPoint (for the creation of presentation slides) are probably the best-known Microsoft Applications. They have been around in various versions since the 1990’s (PowerPoint) and even 1980’s (Word and Excel).

Outlook

Outlook is another classic among the Microsoft Office Applications. Microsoft released the first version in the early 90’s. Outlook is widely known as an email application, but it also features a calendar, contact organizing and note taking function.

OneNote

We have already written more extensively about the benefits and use of Microsoft OneNote in one of our previous blog posts. One of its main purposes is the organization of notes, but users can also embed various other files (audio, video, graphics etc.), create free-hand drawings and record audio. In addition, it allows the sharing of the so-called “workbooks” with other users, which makes OneNote a great tool for team collaborations.

How to Master Microsoft Office 365

We will continue this overview of the different Office 365 applications and services in our next post.

In the meantime, have a look at our trainings and certification courses for Microsoft Office 365 to find out how to make the most of its features. TechSherpas are certified Microsoft Gold Partners and provide you with competent and professional instructors, for in-house learning as well as learning solutions on-demand and live/online.

 

Sources:

https://products.office.com/en-us/compare-all-microsoft-office-products?tab=2&OCID=AID717974_SEM_RsukckXV&lnkd=Google_O365SMB_NI

Which of the Microsoft Office 365 Plans Is Right For Me?

Microsoft Office 365 PlansTo decide, which of the available Microsoft Office 365 Plans is the right one for your requirements, let us go through the various selection criteria to point you into the right direction.

Microsoft Office 365 Plans for Home and Business

First of all, there is the option for home use:

  • Office 365 Home
  • Office 365 Personal

with a special version

  • Office Home and Students 2016 for PC

For business purposes, you have the choice between three different options:

  • Office 365 Business
  • Office 365 Premium Business
  • Office 365 Business Essentials

Microsoft Office 365 is available for PC and Mac. The Homes and Students version (only for PC) can be purchased for a one-time payment. All other versions are paid for on a monthly basis, with a minimum commitment of one year.

Which of the Microsoft Office 365 Applications and Services do you need?

Depending on which of the Microsoft Office 365 plans you select, an array of different Microsoft applications and services is included in the plan.

Applications:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • OneNote
  • Outlook
  • Publisher (only for PC)
  • Access (only for PC)

All of these applications are included in Office 365 Home and Office 365 Personal, as well as (except Publisher) in Office 365 Business and Office 365 Premium Business.

The Office Home and Students 2016 for PC plan includes a limited selection:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • OneNote

The Office 365 Business Essentials plan does not include any application.

Services:

  • OneDrive
  • Skype/Skype for Business
  • Exchange
  • SharePoint
  • Microsoft Teams

Office Home and Students 2016 for PC does not include any service.

For the other plans, a differing selection applies:

OneDrive is included in each of the plans (except Office Home and Students 2016 for PC). Apart from Office 365 Business (and the student version), Skype or Skype for Business are part of all plans. Office 365 Premium Business and Office 365 Business Essentials both also include SharePoint and Microsoft Teams.

Getting the best use out of Microsoft Office 365

Finding the right Microsoft Office 365 plan is only the first step though. We, at TechSherpas , are certified Microsoft Gold Partners. In order to get the best use out of the selected plans and its individual features for home and business, have a look at our various Microsoft Office 365 trainings, certification courses and boot camps.

 

Sources:

https://products.office.com/en-us/compare-all-microsoft-office-products?tab=2&OCID=AID717974_SEM_RsukckXV&lnkd=Google_O365SMB_NI

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/b/help-me-choose-office