Over the last 15 months, I have completed 5 Microsoft certifications and have used various sources on the internet to get me through.
My method of remembering facts relies on completing a mind map. This way, I note down the key points (key to me anyway) for a subject and link them together, serving as a quick refresher on the day but forces me to fill out my knowledge as I research the content and develop my understanding.
Please don’t think that memorising these maps will be all you need to do to pass any of the exams. I share them to assist you in getting that certificate and maybe trigger something that you don’t understand so you can research that area more effectively. I also don’t guarantee that they are all accurate. The vagaries of time and my ineptitude will ensure they are not.
It goes without saying that practice is the best way of ensuring you have the right understanding of the product, but I have found that there are always areas where you have not come across, even if you have been working on an application for years. Microsoft never stops developing.
I will keep this page up to date as I complete more exams with the mind map and any resources I used, with the exam I took most recently at the top.
All the mind maps can be found here. I use Freeplane as my mind mapping tool of choice, because it is open source, free for unlimited maps, allows tweaking of styles etc and is not trying to sell you it’s bigger brother. There are others out there which offer increased functionality, but this works for me. You can import Mindmap files into most other services.
MB-210 – Sales
Sales is my bread and butter, with lots of experience in what the life-cycle is etc, but the new parts, Sales Insights was new.
Again, I used Neil’s blog. Great insight, though I would also get an understanding of the minimum requirements for some services, which I wasn’t ready for.
The scenarios are full on too, though the advise is to read it through before tackling a question and re-read the sections before giving your answer
MB-240 – Field Service
Field service was a stretch goal for me, as I have never used it in anger on a client site. It is a relatively new product in the suite, but one that is getting a lot of traction in the D365 community.
I went into this exam thinking I was not prepared, but managed a decent pass with my learning. The exam itself is quite short, but did stretch my understanding.
My first resource, as always was Neil Parkhurst. He has a great series of posts on this exams predecessor, MB2-718 Whilst being slightly dated, it is still relevant.
Further, I went through the Microsoft Learn topics on Field Service here
MB-200 – Customer Engagement Core
As I have been working with D365 a while, I was very lazy when going into this one. I just assumed I knew it all, brushed up on the new stuff and went for it. Thankfully, this didn’t bite me in the ass.
I didn’t do a map for this one, but I reviewed the map for MB2-716 here.
AZ-203 – Developing Solutions for Azure
I consider myself to be a lapsed developer. I love coding, but my career has taken myself into more of an advisor and designer than a “coder”. This exam was proof to myself that I could still run with the cool kids and also exposed me to a lot of the azure stack that I did not know.
As I was preparing for this exam back in January, to get an Azure Developer Associate certification, it swapped from 2 exams to 1, AZ-200 being the first, that is why they references to AZ-200 linger.
For this exam I was indebted to the course by Pluralsight which I am thankful that I had access to.
From a D365 developer point of view, this was a tough one. It was a step above and beyond what I expected. There is so much content, each area to a decent understanding level it really taxed me. This is the first exam to push the time I had available to complete it, with a large number of questions and a lot of deliberation.
MB2-718 – D365 for Customer Service
This was the last of the older exams I took before Microsoft revamped the exams. Neil Parkhurst has an excellent blog on this one, which was my source. I have been doing service for quite a while, but the intricacies around SLAs and Queues were something that I had to learn. It also contained Unified Service Desk and Voice of the Customer, both subjects I had not come across.
MB2-716 – Customisation & Configuration
Another old exam, and something I take pride in as it is my bread and butter. This was another re-cap of my understanding, particularly around the bits where I would just Google when I came across it in my day job. Neil Parkhurst again provided the detail which saw me through. Bits on auditing and configuring email etc. were items that I knew the fundamentals, but Microsoft has a knack of slightly tweaking the wording giving a separate answer, so it is vital you know your stuff.
MB2-715 – D365 Online Deployment
I am fortunate to have come to D365 after online was the chosen deployment method. I have not got nightmares like some older community members around installing and configuring on-premise solutions. This is another exam that is part of my day-to-day role so it was just a matter of brushing up on where I did not have enough knowledge.
Neil Parkhurst (who doesn’t owe Neil a beer?) has it covered again. There is a lot you take for granted here, that you need to get to grips with, such as licensing, what you need to do in the Office Admin portal vs D365 admin, Email configuration and integration with other apps like SharePoint.