Earn the Gold Application Development competency
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Earn the Gold Application Development competency

Demonstrate greater value to your customers by achieving the Microsoft Gold Application Development competency, which has been created by merging the Independent Software Vendor (ISV), Software Development, and Web Development competencies. With this competency, you can showcase best-in-class capabilities that have undergone a rigorous and auditable approval process. Here you’ll find the steps and requirements that can put you on your way to earning valuable competency benefits.

Note: If you previously held the ISV competency, the Software Development competency, or the Web Development competency, you were automatically moved to the new Application Development competency at the beginning of November 2012. To maintain the Application Development competency, you must fulfill the new requirements by your next annual renewal date. For more information, refer to the Application Development competency guide.

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.

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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 Gold Application Development competency. If you need assistance, contact your Regional Service Center.

1. Pass the qualifying certifications or application test

Your organization must demonstrate the appropriate credentials by meeting one of the following requirement options.

Option 1: Certification requirements

Your organization must employ or contract with four unique Microsoft Certified Professionals (MCPs) who each hold one of the following Microsoft Certified Professional Developer (MCPD) or Microsoft Certified Solution Developer (MCSD) certifications.

Resources and next steps:

  • Click the links for the certifications in the preceding list 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.

Option 2: Application test requirements

Your organization must have one product or application that has passed one of the following application tests:

The following application tests for the former ISV competency are still available and valid but will be retired in October 2013:

Qualifying applications include developed and marketed, packaged software solutions based on Microsoft technologies. Custom-written applications not meant for resale do not qualify.

Resources and next steps:

2. Meet the revenue commitment

Microsoft Partner Network members with a gold competency must meet a minimum revenue commitment based on geography and competency.

Resources and next steps:

3. Pass the licensing overview assessment

For the Application Development competency, the licensing overview assessment is required only for partners who earn the competency through fulfilling the certification requirements option. 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 gold competencies).

Resources and next steps:

4. Provide customer evidence

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

Your company must submit five unique2 customer references3 that showcase custom or commercially available business applications developed on the Windows Azure platform or the Windows Server or Windows operating system. If your company chooses the application testing option to fulfill the credentials requirements, your customer references must refer to the application that has successfully passed the application test.

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

Beginning May 2013, the number of customer references required to earn the Gold Application Development competency will increase to:

  • 10 customer references for partners applying with the Windows Azure or Windows Server application tests.
  • 20 customer references for partners applying with the Windows 8 application test.

Resources and next steps:

5. Gather customer feedback

Your company must use the Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) Index survey to measure performance and help drive customer satisfaction.

Resources and next steps:

6. Pay the gold competency fee

To complete your enrollment in the Gold Application Development competency, you must pay the gold competency fee.4

1Partner organizations can attain multiple gold competencies, and individual employees and contractors may take and pass multiple gold competency exams. However, if your organization employs or contracts with someone who holds multiple certifications, that person’s credentials will count toward only one gold competency.

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 gold competency.

3After you have five references, your account administrator can assign them to your competency by clicking the Requirements and Assets menu and then clicking Create Customer References.

4The gold competency fee varies by geography. You must pay the gold competency fee one time, per year—no matter how many competencies your organization has attained. If you attain a gold competency after first attaining a silver competency, then you pay only the difference between the two membership fees, unless you are within the 90-day renewal period, in which case the full gold competency membership fee is due.

Next steps