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All Dynamics CRM training course materials should be free for everyone to download

Author Name: Neil Benson

My suggestion is that CRM training materials should be free for anyone to download.

Partners are expected to purchase a Microsoft Dynamics Partner Foundation or Advantage Service Plan in order to access several benefits including access to the Dynamics CRM 4.0 and 2011 training guides.

The Dynamics service plans are most popular with larger partners who are committed to Dynamics CRM. The service plans are less popular with new and small partners who are still building their committment.

This means that the CRM professionals who need the most training (those who work for new and smaller partners) do not have access to training material, while those who are most likely to be certified already (those who work for Silver and Gold CRM certified partners) do have access to the training.

Well-training, certified CRM professionals perform better CRM implementations. It's in everyone's interests -- Microsoft, partners and customers -- to ensure that Microsoft Dynamics CRM has more well-training, certified CRM professionals available than competing systems. Microsoft will have happier customers, larger market share and greater software licensing revenues by providing free training materials to its customers and partners than it will by attempting to turn training requirements into a source of revenue.

Salesforce.com, for example, provide administrator training guides at no charge for anyone to download from their website: http://www.salesforce.com/assets/pdf/misc/SG_CertifiedAdmin.pdf.

The Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 training course materials were free for any customer or partner to download and study. However, the policy changed with the release of CRM 4.0 and hasn't reverted with the release of CRM 2011. It should!

Status: Planned

Thank you for your feedback. We will consider this in our roadmap.

 

Sincerely,

 Srikumar Nair

 PM, Microsoft

 

Comments
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I Agree!
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I agree. Training materials should be free of cost.
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I don't see why the materials are not free for partners ;-(
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wholeheartedly agree
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I agree, not everyone has deep pockets, and some people want to become certified in order to build a small business into something worthwhile - and a dynamics partnership is one way this could be achieved - IF we could get the training!
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Then what purpose does a Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) serve? Only MCT's are allowed to train Microsoft Official Curriculum (MOC) courses providing they certify in them, pass the certification test, and maintain their MCT certification. A heck of a lot of work and cost for very little gain. If this is approved, partners would just study the material provided and take the test - bypassing the need for an MCT altogether. It would pretty much kill the only market where MOC training is useful and the only reason for becoming an MCT.
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I agree. I understand that there is a question of cost, butit is necessary to to consider aspects such as disseminating knowledge in a more accessible or run the risk of " burning theproduct "dueto lack of proper qualification ?
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I agree with Neil. Microsoft want to improve the quality of implementations (hence the need for SureStep training) but then restrict access to the application training materials. This policy doesn't seem to make sense.
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Agree with Neil. It's hard to see the sense in making knowledge exclusive, especially if you exclude the very people promoting your product in the market. I've recently moved from consultancy to customer side and would not only expect to work with accredited consultants, but also (as internal owner of the CRM system) would want access to training resources myself (yes, partly to reduce reliance on 3rd party support post-implementation, but also for proper infrastructure management). Training materials need to be available to all.
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I agree with Neil! To Jon.capps: MCT's will still have their purpose, by saying that this will reduce the need for a MCT, I find doubtful. There are professionals out there that are fully capable of learning the CRM system on their own (like myself) However there are little things that we would like to have the ability to read up on (Such as: "How can you correct the help link on the top right corner from going to a different server") and it makes Microsoft look bad when I can get my answers from forums faster then I can get it from Microsoft. Why would I hire a MCT to consume x amount of days training when I would only have a hand full of questions to begin with? CRM is not a hard application to configure, maintain and use,(I've already migrated 4.0 to 2011) it's other programs such as outlook and sharepoint that you bring into the mix, or at least that is where I found most of my problems arise. As for cost of this information, if the designers followed the project life cycle, alot of this information is already documented, you simply need to make it available. Besides I know Microsoft hoards a ton of support documents in their Visual KB that we can't even touch, simply to keep the requirement of needing their support. Which makes me doubt that they will ever release their CRM documents. Which is why I will likely continue searching the forums for my information first. Cheers for the effort Neil!!