This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: New blog articles in Microsoft Tech Community.
If you’re a functional consultant who uses your technical expertise with both Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform to implement intelligent planning solutions for your organization to help ensure consistent and dependable operations, the Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Field Service Functional Consultant Associate certification could be just what you’ve been looking for. A Microsoft Certification validates to the world that you have valuable skills—whether you’re just starting out, looking to use your functional consultant experience to advance your career, or wanting to change to a new, in-demand career.
The Microsoft approach to certification focuses on building a strong learning culture and on encouraging learners on their journey. A Microsoft white paper on role-based tech training and certifications reports that certification increases efficiency and productivity in hard-to-fill roles. Compared to peers, professionals with Microsoft Certifications are 90 percent more productive. Recent IDC research on role-based certifications indicates that the people in specific roles have responsibilities which typically span several domains and that each role works with many different technologies. There’s a need for functional consultants in Dynamics 365 Field Service who are multitaskers—they plan, organize, and implement better solutions for teams dealing with customer issues.
You can add your certifications to your résumé and your LinkedIn page to alert organizations to your expertise. LinkedIn is a very effective and easy way to call attention to your accomplishments. Did you know that LinkedIn members with profiles that list at least five skills on are messaged up to 27 times more than those who don’t?
In this post in our series on discovering your career path, we look at the benefits of earning the Dynamics 365 Field Service Functional Consultant Associate certification. Plus, we suggest other certifications that can be useful for functional consultants who want to call attention to their broad variety of skills as seasoned professionals.
The Field Service functional consultant role and certification
You fit the profile for this certification if you’re a functional consultant with responsibility for using Dynamics 365 Field Service to implement solutions that manage resources which complete the Field Service lifecycle.
Functional consultants collaborate with the designers of Field Service processes. They implement these processes, configure default administration areas of the Field Service application, deploy the Connected Field Service (IoT) solution and the mobile application, and implement any additional customizations needed. Field Service functional consultants are responsible for the configuration and deployment of the Field Service application in conjunction with the core customer service application.
As a candidate for this certification, you must know how to configure and customize components of the Field Service application, including configuring services, resources, characteristics, incidents, inventory integration, service agreements, resource scheduling, work orders, service tasks, user roles, settings, the Connected Field Service solution, and configuration of the Field Service Mobile application. You should also be familiar with the Microsoft Power Apps–based mobile application.
As a functional consultant in this role, you need experience working on teams with project managers, developers, and solution architects, plus a minimum of one to three years of experience as a functional consultant implementing Dynamics 365.
Since you need experience with both Microsoft Power Platform and Dynamics 365, you’ll take two exams to earn the certification:
- Exam PL-200: Microsoft Power Platform Functional Consultant
- Exam MB-240: Microsoft Dynamics 365 Field Service
Benefits of certification
In Pearson VUE’s Value of IT Certification report, professionals list their top reasons for certification as improving professional standing, increasing technical knowledge, and increasing their chances of a salary increase. Plus, 67 percent of the respondents indicate greater self-confidence in their abilities, and 55 percent note that the knowledge they gained was transferable to actual work situations.
Certifications can give you career flexibility and promising earning options. The Global Knowledge 2020 IT Skills and Salary Report found that IT professionals with certifications, on average, earn more than their peers without them. Interestingly, the survey found that the more certifications a professional holds, the higher their average salary. In fact, 12 percent of individuals who received a raise attribute it to new skills. IT professionals who obtained a new certification saw their salary increase by nearly $13,000.
In addition to validating your abilities and skills, certification be useful when you use your skills to seek promotions and raises. In the 2020–2021 Microsoft Dynamics Salary Survey from Nigel Frank, 80 percent of respondents believe that Dynamics 365 certifications are important for increasing earning potential.
As a functional consultant working with Microsoft Power Platform and Dynamics 365, you need to know multiple technologies and your responsibilities need to span more than one domain. IDC research on role-based certifications indicates that people with a relevant certification perform on average 26 percent better than colleagues with the same responsibilities who haven’t earned a certification.
Other certifications for you
Depending on the direction you want to take your career, you should investigate the different Microsoft Certifications available to you to help you take the next steps.
If you’re interested in the Dynamics 365 Field Service Functional Consultant certification, your skill set might also be a great fit for the Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Customer Service Functional Consultant Associate certification (pass Exam PL-200 and Exam MB-230).
If you’re new to Microsoft Power Platform and Dynamics 365, check out Microsoft Certified: Power Platform Fundamentals (pass Exam PL-900) and Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Fundamentals (CRM) (pass Exam MB-910).
If you want to use your skills to broaden your career options, consider exploring other Dynamics 365 associate certifications:
- Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Sales Functional Consultant Associate (pass Exam PL-200, linked to earlier in this post, and Exam MB-210)
- Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Marketing Functional Consultant Associate (pass Exam PL-200 and Exam MB-220)
To further your career, when you’re ready, you might want to pursue an advanced solutions architect certification: Microsoft Certified: Power Platform Solution Architect Expert (complete a prerequisite and pass Exam PL-600).
How do I get started?
Planning skills, organizational ability, technical acumen, and a passion for enabling the team to resolve customer issues quickly and efficiently characterize Field Service functional consultants. As one of these professionals, you want to implement solutions that empower technicians and agents and to connect assets for better team integration so that the team can focus on satisfying customers.
However, if you don’t feel ready to take the two required exams just yet, we have a few suggestions for you. Try working as a functional consultant on a Dynamics 365 Field Service implementation project. Or you might work with a functional consultant who regularly uses Dynamics 365 Field Service. Be strategic about taking your two required exams. One approach would be to focus on first passing the required exam that fits your skill set best. Just by reading this blog post, you’ve probably noted that Exam PL-200 is a paired requirement for this certification and several others, so it might be a good exam to take first. Find more support by exploring training opportunities or taking an instructor-led course. No matter where you are on your journey, we have training that can help you get underway.
To get started with this certification, check out our Dynamics 365 Field Service Consultant Associate certification journey map. You can also find the journey map in the resources section on the Dynamics 365 Field Service Functional Consultant Associate certification and exam pages.
To map out your journey, follow the sequence on the Dynamics 365 Field Service Functional Consultant Associate journey map. Start at the beginning by deciding whether this certification is a good fit for you.
Next, choose the training you’ll need to be prepared. To understand what you’ll be measured on when you take the two required exams, review the Exam PL-200 skills outline guide and the Exam MB-240 skills outline guide on their respective exam pages. Then sign up for the training that fits your learning style and experience:
- On the certification page, choose curated learning paths and modules on Microsoft Learn for Microsoft Power Platform and Dynamics 365. Explore hours of free, self-paced online learning to help you get ready.
- If you prefer to learn from an instructor, review the instructor-led training from Microsoft Learning Partners. To learn more, check out Microsoft Learning Partners: Teaching the skills of tomorrow, today.
Check the journey map to explore taking a practice exam for this certification.
After you pass the exams and earn your certification, you can continue to add to your technical expertise by taking one of the other certifications described in this blog post or by exploring other certification offerings. Consider our associate and expert certifications when you achieve the next milestones on your career journey. Use this diagram to map out the possibilities: Microsoft Power Platform and Dynamics 365 certification paths.
Where’s my community?
Join other Field Service functional consultants in a community! Share your career journey with colleagues who have similar interests in Microsoft Power Platform and Dynamics 365 technologies. Here are some places where you can share and gather information and learn from your peers and others.
- Dynamics 365 Community
- LinkedIn: Dynamics 365 jobs
- LinkedIn: Dynamics 365 network
- Microsoft Power Platform Community
- LinkedIn: Microsoft Power Platform job board
Celebrate with the world: Post your badge on LinkedIn
When you earn a certification or learn a new skill, celebrate your accomplishment with your network. It often takes less than a minute to update your LinkedIn profile and share your achievements, highlight your skills, and help boost your career potential. Here’s how:
- If you’ve earned a certification already, follow the instructions in the congratulations email you received. Or find your badge on your Certification Dashboard, and follow the instructions there to share it. (You’ll be transferred to the Credly website.)
- For more information on badges, check out the Certification Badges FAQ.
- To add specific skills to your LinkedIn profile, go to your profile page and update the Skills and endorsements section. Tip: We recommend that you choose skills listed in the skills outline guide for your certification.
It’s easy to renew your certification
When your Dynamics 365 Field Service Functional Consultant Associate certification expires, we’ve got good news. You can renew your current certifications by passing a free renewal assessment on Microsoft Learn—anytime within six months before your certification expires. For more details, read our blog post, Stay current with in-demand skills through free certification renewals.
Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform resources
- Blog: Microsoft Dynamics 365
- Blog: Microsoft Dynamics CRM Support
- Microsoft Learn resources: Microsoft Dynamics 365
- YouTube channel: Microsoft Dynamics 365
- Twitter: Dynamics 365
- Blog: Microsoft Power Platform
- April Dunnam’s Power Apps blog
- Microsoft Learn resources: Microsoft Power Platform
Ready to discover your career path?
As a Field Service functional consultant, you have a passion for improving operations and finding the most efficient ways for your team to resolve customer issues. By achieving this certification, you let the world know that you have these skills. Certifications signal that you have what it takes to build a new future—for your organization and its customers.
 IDC white paper, sponsored by Microsoft, Leveraging Microsoft Learning Partners for Innovation and Impact, #US47225021, January 2021.