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Michael Taschler

Cloud Certifications: Microsoft 365 Certified Teams Administrator Associate

Michael Taschler

  • Aug 4, 2020
  • 12 Min read
  • 475 Views
  • Aug 4, 2020
  • 12 Min read
  • 475 Views
Cloud
Cloud Fundamentals
Cloud Platforms
Microsoft Office 365

Introduction

Right now during the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, remote work has become a lifeline for companies and employees, schools and pupils, and universities and students. Without it, people would be at greater risk of becoming unemployed and disconnected from their work and education. Microsoft Teams is one of the most popular apps for facilitating remote work.

Setting up and administering Microsoft Teams and its underlying technologies is a big challenge, and that is where you come in. As a Microsoft 365 Certified Teams Administrator Associate, you will set up the Microsoft Teams tenant for your organization, configure it, maintain it, and troubleshoot it. You will liaise with all parts of your organization to educate your users and promote Microsoft Team's benefits and features to these groups.

In this guide, you will learn about the Microsoft 365 Certified Teams Administrator Associate certification and the exam you can take to achieve it.

Microsoft 365 Teams Administrator Associate Badge

The Microsoft 365 Certified Teams Administrator Associate certification follows Microsoft's departure from broader certifications like the Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA) or its older sibling, the Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE). Nowadays the focus is on specific roles.

Target Audience

Since this is an associate-level certification, the required exam covers a wide range of collaboration and productivity topics.

As a Microsoft Teams Administrator, you will configure, deploy, and manage Office 365 workloads for Microsoft Teams that focus on efficient and effective collaboration and communication in an enterprise environment. You will be able to plan, deploy, and manage Teams: chat, apps, channels, meetings, audio conferences, live events, and calls. You will also be responsible for upgrading from Skype for Business to Teams.

You will collaborate with telephony engineers to integrate advanced voice features into Microsoft Teams. This role is not responsible for configuring direct routing, configuring call routing, or integrating telephony. You may work with other workload administrator roles, including security and compliance, messaging, networking, identity, and devices.

You should be proficient at managing Teams settings using PowerShell. You should also have a fundamental understanding of integration points with apps and services, including but not limited to SharePoint, OneDrive for Business, Exchange, Azure AD, and Office 365 Groups, and you understand how to integrate external apps and services.

The Exam

A single exam, the MS-700, is required to gain the Microsoft 365 Certified Teams Administrator Associate certification. It is important to understand that Microsoft has taken up the practice of retiring and replacing exams at a much faster pace than in the past. Since the cloud is ever-changing, Microsoft updates live exams frequently. The MS-700 exam has received a number of updates since its original release.

The price for the exam is US$165/€165. Microsoft offers a student discount if you verify your academic status when booking the exam by using one of the following: a school email account, a school account, an International Student Identity Card, a verification code, or other documentation proving your eligibility for the student discount.

Prerequisites

While there are no specific prerequisites to taking the MS-700 exam, it is worth noting that experience with the required skills is key to a successful experience. Passing the MS-900: Microsoft 365 Fundamentals exam and achieved the corresponding Microsoft 365 Certified: Fundamentals certification, while not mandatory, will help you prepare for this level since it introduces a number of technologies covered in the MS-700 Teams Administrator Associate exam.

Learning Path for Microsoft 365 Certified: Teams Administrator Associate

Ensure that you possess sufficient experience and invest the time to go through the relevant Pluralsight courses and other resources.

Skills Measured

Your skills will be measured in the following three categories:

  • Plan and Configure a Microsoft Teams Environment (45-50%)
  • Manage Chat, Calling, and Meetings (30-35%)
  • Manage Teams and App Policies (20-25%)

These categories are broken down into details as follows:

Plan and Configure a Microsoft Teams Environment

Upgrade from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams

  • Choose an appropriate upgrade path and coexistence mode to meet specific requirements
  • Plan and troubleshoot meeting migration
  • Configure Microsoft Teams upgrade notification and meeting app choices
  • Configure coexistence mode for the organization and per-user

Plan and configure network settings for Microsoft Teams

  • Plan for successful network deployment by using Network Planner
  • Calculate network bandwidth capacity for Microsoft Teams voice, video, meetings and live events
  • Assess network readiness by using the Network Testing Companion
  • Configure network ports and protocols used by Microsoft Teams client application
  • Configure media optimizations by using QoS

Implement governance and lifecycle management for Microsoft Teams

  • Create team templates
  • Set up policies for Office 365 Groups creation
  • Configure Office 365 Groups for Microsoft Teams classifications, expiration policy, and naming policy
  • Archive, restore, and delete a team

Configure and manage guest access

  • Configure guest users for Microsoft Teams
  • Configure guest permissions for a team
  • Configure meeting, messaging, and calling options for guests
  • Remove guests
  • Manage Azure AD access review for guests
  • Configure guest access from Azure AD portal

Manage security and compliance

  • Assign Microsoft Teams Admin roles
  • Create and manage compliance features, including retention and sensitivity policies
  • Create security and compliance alerts for Microsoft Teams
  • Create an information barrier policy
  • Interpret security reports for Microsoft Teams

Deploy and manage Microsoft Teams endpoints

  • Deploy Microsoft Teams clients to devices, including Windows, VDI (Virtual Desktop), MacOS, and mobile devices
  • Manage configuration profiles
  • Manage device settings and firmware
  • Configure Microsoft Teams Rooms

Monitor and analyze service usage

  • Interpret Microsoft Teams usage reports
  • interpret Microsoft 365 usage reports
  • Optimize call quality by using Call Analytics
  • Analyze organization-wide call quality by using Call Quality Dashboard
  • Use Power BI to identify call quality issues

Manage Chat, Calling, and Meetings

Manage chat and collaboration experiences

  • Configure messaging policies
  • Manage external access
  • Manage channels for a team
  • Manage private channel creation policies
  • Manage email integration
  • Configure external access for SharePoint and OneDrive for Business
  • Manage cloud file storage options for collaboration

Manage meeting experiences

  • Configure meeting settings
  • Create and manage meeting policies
  • Configure settings for live events
  • Create and manage policies for live events
  • Configure conference bridge settings

Manage phone numbers

  • Recommend a PSTN connectivity solution based on specific business requirements
  • Order phone numbers
  • Manage service numbers
  • Add, change, or remove an emergency address for your organization
  • Assign, change, or remove a phone number for a user
  • Manage voice settings for users
  • Configure dynamic emergency calling

Manage Phone System

  • Manage resource accounts
  • Create and configure call queues
  • Create and configure auto attendants
  • Manage call park policies
  • Manage calling policies
  • Manage caller ID policies
  • Interpret the Direct Routing health dashboard

Manage Teams and App Policies

Manage a team

  • Create a team
  • Upgrade an existing resource to a team
  • Manage privacy levels for a team
  • Manage org-wide teams

Manage membership in a team

  • Manage users in a team
  • Configure dynamic membership
  • Manage access review for team members

Implement policies for Microsoft Teams apps

  • Create and manage app permission policies
  • Create and manage app setup policies

Pluralsight Courses

Make sure you check out the following Pluralsight courses on Microsoft Teams:

As always, the newer the course, the more relevant the material will be to your learning journey.

Other Resources

Microsoft Learn provides several training resources free of charge. Take a look at the following learning paths:

Utilizing Microsoft Docs and navigating to the relevant topics will also enable you to prepare for this exam.

Compensation and Employment Outlook

The cloud business has been booming in the last several years. Microsoft has closed the gap with its main competitor and kept growing. While COVID-19 has affected everyone in some way, it certainly doesn't seem to have had a negative impact on Microsoft's cloud growth. Without doubt, Teams has been Microsoft's star app during the pandemic.

Gaining an up-to-date certification like the Microsoft Teams Administrator Associate certification from a household name like Microsoft should make you much more attractive to both your current and future employers, especially since the cloud is booming. Your current employer might not raise your salary, but the next time you go looking for a job, make sure you check trusted internet sources for up-to-date information on salaries in your region.

It's difficult to provide absolute figures because they depend on numerous factors, like your experience, company type and size, industry, and region. Expect salaries for unified communication and collaboration professionals—be that an administrator, consultant, or architect—to range from US$63,000 to US$151,000 in the United States.

Conclusion

As an associate-level certification, the Microsoft Teams Administrator Associate credentials, while challenging, will earn you the recognition to prove that you are a subject matter expert in this field. All it takes is a single exam. Sign up at Microsoft Office 365 for a one month trial and book the exam, which you can take right in your home or in one of many testing centers.

I hope that this guide is useful and wish you good luck gaining your certification.

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