Are you interested in an office-based role? Are you looking for a way into a career that requires computer skills? Perhaps you're just looking for a qualification to boost your resume? Look no further – becoming a Microsoft Certified Application Specialist might be the right move for you!
The Microsoft Certified Application Specialist credential is one of Microsoft's business certifications. Open to those with little prior computing experience, and great if you don't have much formal education, the MCAS proves to employers that you are an expert in a range of Microsoft applications, such as Office, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook and Access.
The MCAS is suitable for candidates from a range of abilities, though is probably more rewarding for those from a background other than IT. Primarily designed for office workers, the MCAS validates your experience working with Microsoft Windows products, and might give you the edge you need when looking for a role that requires computer literacy.
As more and more offices require the use of the full range of Microsoft tools, an MCAS can be a great boost and put you ahead of the rest of the pack. Although most people these days can competently use word processors, having proven expertise of the full range of essential office products speaks volumes about your ability, and possibly your suitability for an office role. By the end of your training, you will have the knowledge and skills to enable you to complete a variety of Office-suite functions, such as:
These essential functions are office staples (no pun intended!), and on-the-job training can be awkward for employers. Having these skills at your fingertips could be an advantage over other candidates, as well as making your working life easier, so the MCAS is a very practical qualification.
There a a variety of ways to study and prepare for the exam or exams you will take, including instructor-led training, practice tests, self-paced training kits and Microsoft Press books. Although some may prefer instructor-led training, Microsoft recommends a self-study method, and offers preparation guides for each exam, which include a list of relevant skills students can practice. At the end of your chosen method of training, you will take one or more exams, which you must pass to gain the certification.
An MCAS can be an excellent supporting qualification to help individuals into a variety of office roles, in large and small companies, and across all sectors. Computers are an essential part of our everyday personal and work lives, so those with the skills to perform essential office tasks are rated highly in the employment world. One role you may be equipped for with an MCAS is an office junior. Here are some details and a brief description of the role.
Office juniors are entry-level office workers, and can work for companies and firms of any size. In addition to learning company policy and systems (for example, certain companies may use their own software systems that are not available for public use), you will also need to be capable in a wide range of computing tasks, including the use of key Microsoft technologies such as Word, Access and Excel. With your MCAS, you will have proven your ability in these areas, making the routine tasks of an office junior easy for you. Your duties may include:
As your knowledge of the company grows, so too does your chance for development. Office juniors that remain with one company for a number of years often move up the career ladder to supervisory or management positions, made possible by their intimate knowledge of their company and the roles within its structure.