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Earn the Silver Small Business competency

Now that you’ve decided to earn the Microsoft Silver Small Business competency, you need to know exactly how to go about it. Here you’ll find the steps and requirements that can put you on your way to earning valuable competency benefits.

Note: Stay up to date on upcoming changes to competency requirements and benefits. Review the changes, so you can ensure you will be in compliance by your next renewal date.

Learn how to earn the Gold Small Business competency.

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Competency requirements are designed to closely align with customer needs. The following information is a comprehensive listing of the requirements your company must fulfill to attain the Silver Small Business competency. If you need assistance, contact your Regional Service Center.

1. Pass the qualifying exams

Your company must employ or contract with one Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) who has passed:

  • Exam 74-324: Administering Office 365 for Small Businesses

In addition, your company must employ or contract with either the same or a different MCP who must pass one exam from the following list:1

  • Exam 70-169: TS: Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard, Configuring (to be retired in October 2013)
  • Exam 70-410: Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012
  • Exam 70-642: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring (to be retired in October 2013)
  • Exam 70-680: Windows 7, Configuring
  • Exam 70-687: Configuring Windows 8
  • Exam 70-689: Upgrading Your Skills to MCSA Windows 8
  • Exam 74-324: Administering Office 365 for Small Businesses

Note: If one MCP is taking both exams, that MCP must choose an exam other than Exam 74-324 when choosing an exam from the second list.

If you would like to qualify by using a second MCP to fulfill the exam requirement, contact your Regional Service Center.

 

For countries where Microsoft Office 365 is not yet available:

Your organization must employ or contract with one MCP who has passed two exams, or two MCPs who have each passed one exam, from the following list:

  • Exam 70-169: TS: Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard, Configuring (to be retired in October 2013)
  • Exam 70-410: Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012
  • Exam 70-642: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring (to be retired in October 2013)
  • Exam 70-680: Windows 7, Configuring
  • Exam 70-687: Configuring Windows 8 or Exam 70-689: Upgrading Your Skills to MCSA Windows 8

If you would like qualify by using a second MCP to fulfill the exam requirement, contact your Regional Service Center.

Note: Exam 70-321 Deploying Office 365 and Exam 70-323 Administering Office 365 will count as valid competency exams for MCPs who have previously passed them. 

Resources and next steps:

  • Click the exam links in the preceding lists to learn what skills are measured.
  • Find training to help you prepare.
  • Register for an exam at Prometric
  • Chat with an exam expert in real time and get answers to your questions.

2. Pass the licensing overview assessment

The licensing overview assessment is the same for every competency that requires it.

Your company must employ or contract with one person who has passed the assessment (which then counts toward all silver competencies).

Resources and next steps:

3. Sign the Microsoft Online Services Partner Agreement

Your company must employ or contract with one person who has enrolled as a Microsoft Online Services partner and signed the Microsoft Online Services Partner Agreement (MOSPA).

If you are the administrator for your company, review and sign the Online Services Partner Agreement.

4. Pass the business-focused small business assessment

Your company must employ or contract with one person who has passed the business-focused Small Business assessment. See the Small Business Assessment Readiness Guide for details about how to prepare.

Resources and next steps:

5. Provide customer evidence

Customer references demonstrate your success at building and deploying solutions relevant to the Small Business competency. Approved references can be used toward earning or renewing a competency for up to two years.

Your company must submit three unique2 customer references3 that feature the implementation, deployment, or maintenance of any of the following products:

  • Office 365
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 7
  • Windows Server 2012
  • Windows Server 2012 Essentials
  • Windows Server 2008
  • Windows Small Business Server 2011

Each customer reference must feature a project that you have completed within the past 12 months and that can be verified with your customer.

Resources and next steps:

6. Pay the silver competency fee

To complete your enrollment in the Silver Small Business competency, you must pay the silver competency fee. The fee varies by geography and will be presented to you during the enrollment process.4, 5

 
1Partner organizations can attain multiple silver competencies. If your employees or contractors pass the eligible competency exams for multiple silver competencies, then your organization is eligible to count those exams toward attaining multiple silver competencies.
 
2You may use customer references from your silver competency toward the corresponding gold competency. However, you cannot use the same reference to fulfill the requirements for more than one silver competency.
 
3After you have three references, your account administrator can assign them to your competency by clicking the Requirements and Assets menu and then clicking Create Customer References.
 
4The silver competency fee is due one time per year—no matter how many competencies your company earns.

5For a limited time, from June 1, 2012, through June 30, 2013, members of the Microsoft Partner Network who fulfill the Silver Small Business competency requirements and meet defined eligibility criteria will automatically receive a special one-time discount on the silver competency fee. With this offer, the silver competency fee will be US$999 instead of the standard US$1,850, which is applied during enrollment. Microsoft partners must meet the eligibility requirements for the Silver Small Business competency and the offer terms and conditions to qualify for the special discounted enrollment fee.

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