As discussed previously on this blog (https://www.dynamicconsulting.com/critical-updates-to-microsoft-business-applications-competencies/ ), Microsoft is releasing a new exam schedule for business application competencies. This shift includes the introduction of the MB-300 Microsoft Dynamics 365 Unified Operations Core exam. Recently I completed the MB-300 Microsoft Dynamics 365 Unified Operations Core exam, still in beta testing. This exam will be required for all D365FO consultants as a prerequisite to the functionality-focused exams – Financials (MB-310), Manufacturing (MB-320), Talent (MB6-898) or Supply Chain Management (MB-330). The core exam measures your ability to accomplish the following technical tasks:
- Use common functionality and implementation tools
- Configure security, processes, and options
- Perform data migration
- Validate and support the solution
The exam is scheduled for 220 minutes, and all questions are scenario-based. You are given a scenario, either as a System Administrator, System Implementation Consultant, or as an IT Administrator. For each scenario, you are provided specific details; then based on those details, you are asked to provide the answer(s). Most of these scenarios have multiple questions that require an answer. Each question allows you to select from multiple options in a drop down menu, and each answer counts as a point towards your total score. Frequently, the same answer options were available for all questions in the scenario. Some of the scenarios required the selection of multiple steps in the correct sequence to complete a process. In these scenarios, there were 5-6 potential steps to select from, and only 3 or 4 of them applied to that process. These scenarios counted as a single point towards your overall score.
To prepare, I used the following self-paced study guides available on the MBS Learn website:
- Get started with Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations
- Use Lifecycle Services (LCS) to design and plan an implementation of Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations
- Configure your organization in Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations
- Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Fundamentals
- Migrate data and go live with Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations
I found these Learning Paths helpful- the detail for each topic is enough to understand the functionality and give some insight on what details may be in the exam, and the questions at the end of each module were helpful to validate what I had just read. As I reviewed these study guides, I walked through each of the functional areas in a demo environment. Even though I was already familiar with most the functionality reviewed, it was great to focus on each area in more detail. Too often, we consultants look at functionality to resolve a specific customer requirement, and not always to see the full capability of that functionality. I was able to work through these Learning Paths in about a week.
Although the overall topics on the exam mostly followed the study material on MBS Learn or what was listed in the exam notes, the scenarios touched on very specific functionality that I did not see in detail in this study material. Some areas covered are not used in every implementation or are one-time setups, specifically around:
- LCS / Business Process Libraries / User Acceptance Tests
- Role Based Security
- Workflow Design
- System Administration Configurations
- Data Management
For each of these general topics, be familiar not only with how they function, but how they are used. Because the exam is scenario-based, it’s important to understand more than just the mechanics of how each of these can function. My advice – work with them in a demo environment; configure them yourself if possible. Challenge yourself to understand how and why they can be applied in specific processes and meet potential client requirements.
At first, I thought the time provided to take this exam (220 minutes) was way more than I would need- I only used 130 minutes to take this exam. In hindsight, I should have taken more time per question to make sure I fully reviewed and worked thru each scenario. During the exam, you can flag questions and go back to them at the end of the exam; I’d recommend flagging more questions for a second review, as time permits.
This exam is still in beta testing, so my results won’t be available until “within two weeks after the exam’s live publication date.” So, we’ll all have to wait and see if this preparation worked. Overall, I would recommend taking the time to not only read the material, but to hands-on work each of these functional areas. Make sure you are familiar with the steps to complete these tasks and see their output. Good luck to you on this exam… If you have any questions / feedback, please contact us here at DC.
The results from this test were available for me at the end of June 2019. A passing score of 700 is required. My score was 683. So, the challenge became how to improve on this score for a potential retake of this exam. The first place to look is the score report provided by Microsoft. Beyond just the results, the score report broke down for me my results for each of the four high level exam sections. MB-300 Exam Results Clearly, I needed to up my game in the data migration section for sure. Also I needed to spend more time reviewing D365FO security configuration and options as well. This score report also provides methods on how I could help improve my skills for a retake. These include:
- Explore the available learning options and resources provided in the “Preparation Options” section on the Exam Details page for this exam on Microsoft Learning Experience’s website ( microsoft.com/learning)
- Review the learning options available at Microsoft Virtual Academy. At Microsoft Virtual Academy, you’ll find hundreds of online Microsoft training courses delivered by experts and designed to help you learn the latest technologies and build your skills, along with Study Group Forums (visit www.microsoftvirtualacademy.com).
- Actually, perform the tasks listed in the “Skills Being Measured” section of the Exam Details page. Note any challenges that you encountered and keep practicing. Hands-on experience performing these tasks is essential to passing this exam.
- Read white papers and MSDN and TechNet articles for additional information about the tasks covered by the exam. Search authoritative sources, such as docs.microsoft.com, msdn.microsoft.com, and technet.microsoft.com.
Reviewing these options, I needed to make a plan to be ready for a retake by the end of July 2019. This would give me four weeks to prepare. So, I came up with the following;
- I did look for an online class through the virtual academy link provided on the score sheet, however I did not find one specific for the MB-300 exam.
- I did go back to the MBS learn web site and reviewed Learning Paths again for the topics related to this exam.
- I created a more detailed task list for each of the four exam sections. I used the Learning Paths as a guide to create these tasks for each section.
- I spent much more time in a demo D365FO environment reviewing each task. As I knew the exam questions would be scenario-based, and sometimes very specific, I made sure to review configuration options in much more detail. I also made sure to know very clearly what the specific sequences are for those configuration steps
- I spent time reviewing in detail the D365FO area on docs.microsoft.com. The documentation here has good detail for these exam sections.
I spent the next three weeks mostly working through the last two items on my plan. At the end of that time, having reviewed each section in detail and being as hands-on as possible in my demo environment, I felt ready for the retake. I scheduled this for the last week in July. I took the exam at the same test center as I did previously (even sat at the same desk). Knowing where to go and the pre-exam process allowed me to focus more on the actual exam itself. Once I started the exam, my plan and preparation were paying off. Some of the questions were the same or similar to the first time, but some I had not seen previously. Being more comfortable and prepared, I finished the exam in under an hour. The result… a passing score of 725!!! Alrighty… on to the MB-310 exam If you have any questions / feedback, please contact us here at DC.