by Denny Lee (SQL Customer Advisory Team), Daniel Yu (SQL Marketing)

Over the last few weeks, there has been a lot of questions, tweets, and rumors about the SSAS Maestros program – some notable blogs include Kasper de Jonge’s Do you have what it takes to become SSAS Maestro and Vidas Matelis’ SSAS White Paper List

 

Background Information

We had created the SSAS Maestros program as a way to broadcast the lessons learned from some of SQLCAT’s more complex Analysis Services UDM enterprise customers – such as Yahoo!’s 12TB Analysis Services cube that was announced during the PASS Summit 2010 Day One Keynote with Ted Kummert.  The deep technical learnings from names like Akshai Mirchandani, Thomas Kejser, John Sirmon, Denny Lee, and more! have been incorporated together by our good friends from Solid Quality Mentors into a three-day deep dive course in:

  • Redmond (fully booked now, though we’re planning a second US session shortly)
  • London (fully booked now, though we’re looking into a second London session)
  • Hong Kong: still available!

We will have more courses planned but this is the initial batch of courses as we will be working out the kinks and improving the course over time.  Currently, we’ve made this a 11 module course with labs and exams.

 

Benefits

As noted in the above MS events course link as well as Kasper’s blog, the key benefit will be of course the material that you learn.  But some of the other great things include:

  • Be one of the few part of the elite SSAS Maestros (more on this later)
  • The SSAS Maestros list will be published on a Microsoft site for your customers to reference.
  • When SQLCAT needs someone to help with a complex SSAS engagement or needs to refer to a partner – we will refer to a SSAS Maestro.
  • SQLCAT and the Analysis Services team will be creating SSAS Maestros-only webcasts and Q&A sessions - This will be an exclusive forum to discuss the latest best practice and share critical knowledge 

As you can see, there is a lot of great benefits to this great course! 

 

But…what’s the catch?

Due to its complexity and our dive into deep technical learnings, this is not going to be an easy course.  Some examples of this include:

  • Following technical conference conventions of 400 level sessions, we consider this a 500 level course.
  • There is an application to do this course and entrants are accepted based on showcasing their deep technical experience with Analysis Services.
  • During the three-day course, there will be a number of labs which will have very little guidance (on purpose).
  • Upon completion of the course, there will be a take-home exam project that will need to be completed within thirty (30 days).

We have been drawing inspiration from the SQL Server MCM course – which many of you know is extremely tough!

 

Discussion

As this is the first year of the course, we will be very strict and limit the number of applicants into the course.  This allows us to work out the kinks in the course as well as figure out logistics around the webcasts and exams / re-examinations.  But due to its popularity, we are already rapidly working on planning V2 of the course! So stay tuned!!