Microsoft (MSFT) made a small splash this morning with a announcement in Washington DC it would be helping train “up to 2 million people” in tech skills to assist them in finding work and revamping their career.
We clicked around for a bit on Microsoft’s new job training site: Microsoft Elevate America. From what we can tell, the plan basically entails price cuts on classes in Microsoft proprietary technology and fee reductions on Microsoft certification exams.
Job-seekers looking for career advice on the Elevate America site are directed to “Learn How To Become a Microsoft Certified Professional” or they can get a “Microsoft Certification Overview.”
Generally, this is a good idea by Microsoft. One of the company’s biggest assets has always been its warm relations with developers who use Microsoft tools. And a larger pool of Microsoft-skilled workers raises the value of Microsoft software to prospective corporate clients, especially as the IT labour market contracts as new restrictions on H-1B workers go into effect.
But we wish Microsoft would just say they were encouraging certifications and leave it at that. Promising to “elevate” the country with such a transparently self-serving program seems a bit of a PR reach.