It feels a little odd to be able to call myself an “expert” in anything, and truth be told, I don’t think I would call myself an expert in Azure DevOps (yet), but that’s the name of the certification, so here we are.
So this was the big one. This was the goal I had in mind when I started my certification journey 3 years ago. (Almost to the day!) It was also one of the short-term goals I set for myself in my last promotion panel. It took me longer to get there – mostly because my career has picked up more and more the further I went into this space, so I had less time and energy to dedicate to study. The exam for this was rescheduled no less than eleven times! I’d meant to sit it in Q4 2021, but I was head down on a big and important project at that point and had to reschedule the pre-requisite AZ-204 exam to 2022. After that I just kept postponing it and feeling bad until I stuck a pin in the calendar and said “no more!”
Like most of my exams, I leaned on a mix of MS Learn, MeasureUp, and WhizLabs to prepare. With the benefit of hindsight, I’d recommend the WhizLabs practice tests over MeasureUp. While the general practice of the MeasureUp test was good, the WhizLabs tests were much closer to the questions I was asked in my exam – obviously this might not always be the case, as both Microsoft and the test providers refresh their questions every so often.
Overall I’d say I found the exam itself easier than the Developer Associate, but I had a lot of the same “I don’t really recognise this” feeling all the way through. I think that’s just a general anxiety I have in these exams, as despite the feeling I passed with a generous buffer. As a general aside, there were a lot more questions on the nitty-gritty of Git than I expected; I’d focussed more on GitHub features, Azure Repos branch policies, and other Azure-specific pieces of the SCM puzzle, so it wasn’t as easy to recall some the answers.
But it’s over with. I’ve decided I’m not going to go for the Azure Administrator cert (AZ-104) for now, as I think I need a pause or change of focus for a while to avoid some learning and development burnout.
But that said, some of the stuff announced at MSBuild 23 looks really interesting, so maybe I should build on my AI Fundamentals and learn about all this new AI/Copilot tech 😉