I just asked my employer to pay for MCITP: EA2008

tropeztropez Posts: 7Member ■□□□□□□□□□
[my manager],

I would like to get current on my Microsoft certifications. The Microsoft enterprise level certification I currently hold is on the Windows 2000 platform which has expired. The more I do with the Windows 2008 platform here @ [the company], the more I keep feeling that updating these certifications only makes sense, especially with the growth mode we’re in. The knowledge I obtained going through the process of becoming certified back in 2000 I reference every day. I would like to update my training and knowledge so that I’m even more of an asset to the team and to the organization. The current enterprise level certification offered by Microsoft is their Enterprise Administrator: Server 2008 program.

The Process
The process of obtaining the Enterprise Administrator: Server 2008 is a multi-step one. You must past several specific exams before you become certified, and only after all of them are complete do you earn the final certification. The exams are below, and in the order I would need to take them. As you can see, each of these topics are a perfect fit for my job role within the company:
• Exam 70-680 TS: Windows 7, Configuration
• Exam 70-640 TS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory, Configuration
• Exam 70-642 TS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuration
• Exam 70-643 TS: Windows Server 2008 Applications Infrastructure, Configuration
• Exam 70-647 Pro: Windows Server 2008, Enterprise Administrator

I’ve attached the official Microsoft Certification Roadmap for reference.

The Plan
I plan to study for each test individually using various training materials (book/videos/sample tests), then schedule and take each test, making sure I pass before moving onto the next one. I would like to shoot for obtaining one of these each month, so this process could extend for 5 months or so depending on my personal and work load.

The Costs
Each test attempt is $150 and you either get a pass or fail. Each test would have associated study materials I would need access to for test preparation. After researching the options, the best option looks to be a package by TestOut for $1295 (on sale right now, link) which includes all of the training materials for all of the tests above (videos, books, test exams, etc). In-person classes are offered for each of the exams as well but they are usually expensive and offered during business hours. I would like to attempt this going the cheaper, self-study route. Total costs I estimate to be about $2045 ($1295 for study aids to get started, $750 for exams which would come $150 at a time).

Company Assistance
Initially I thought this would be something that would go under the educational reimbursement program but after talking with HR, she feels that this would be best handled at a departmental level. I am currently working on plans for going back to school to obtain my Bachelor’s degree making use of the educational reimbursement program but that plan is not quite ready. HR feels these costs would be best kept as something we paid for “using our Amex after pre-approval”. She said to have you stop by to discuss if need be. I’m also open to use my personal CC and turn the expenses in via expense report if need be. (HR, please correct me if I’m incorrect on any of this).

Stipulations
I’m completely open to living up to the same stipulations set forth by the employee manual regarding a service obligation for this type of assistance:
“If an Associate receives tuition reimbursement under this policy, the Associate agrees to complete twelve (12) months of continued service with the Company following the completion of each course. Should the Associate voluntarily resign within twelve (12) months of completing the course and receiving tuition reimbursement, he/she will be required to refund the full or a pro-rated amount. The pro-rated amount will be based upon the number of months of continued service completed (of the 12 required).”

Thoughts, questions, or approval to move forward?


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Wish me luck!

Comments

  • EssendonEssendon Posts: 4,548Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    That's well written. Hope you nail it!
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  • DevilsbaneDevilsbane Posts: 4,212Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    It is almost ridiculous that this kind of thing needs to be requested so formally. Sure, this seems pretty expensive, you're asking for $2,000. But for a company, spending an extra $2,000 to make sure a job gets done right should be a drop in the bucket. How many times have you seen/heard of a company pumping $100k into a project half-heartedly just to see what happens? Companies are far to quick to purchase a piece of software or a new piece of hardware when they could pay for some training which is far cheaper.

    That's just my $.02 on the deal
    Decide what to be and go be it.
  • ZartanasaurusZartanasaurus Posts: 2,008Member
    Devilsbane wrote: »
    It is almost ridiculous that this kind of thing needs to be requested so formally. Sure, this seems pretty expensive, you're asking for $2,000. But for a company, spending an extra $2,000 to make sure a job gets done right should be a drop in the bucket. How many times have you seen/heard of a company pumping $100k into a project half-heartedly just to see what happens? Companies are far to quick to purchase a piece of software or a new piece of hardware when they could pay for some training which is far cheaper.

    That's just my $.02 on the deal
    So true and so sad. Willing to spend $20M on a huge IT project? Sure. Willing to spend an additional $20K as part of that project to ensure your staff are properly up to speed to support the new system? Can't afford that.

    I like the way our director works. Anytime someone comes to him asking about a new technology, he includes the cost of training as part of the package. Want VoIP? Sure. Oh, you don't want to pay for the employee development? Then you don't want VoIP then.
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  • ehndeehnde Posts: 1,103Member
    My company paid for ~38 people to get CCNA certified a few years back. 2 made it. They don't pay for people to take the exam now, but they do provide tuition reimbursement. My coworkers get their certs through school programs that build the cost of the certification voucher into the course.
    Climb a mountain, tell no one.
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