Moving into the next generation of the Microsoft MVP Award

For more than 20 years, MVPs have played a vital role in the advancement and adoption of our technologies. First, to all of the MVPs out there, I want to say THANK YOU! We could not do what we do without you. Through candid, trusted conversations with Microsoft engineers, MVPs not only provide early feedback on what’s coming next, but also often inspire new ideas and features based on real-time experiences in today’s fast-changing ecosystem.

Over the years, I’ve been fortunate to have spoken with many MVPs. I am always impressed by the eagerness to learn that all MVPs seem to share, as well as the common desire MVPs have to share knowledge with others. MVPs design, build and innovate across multiple platforms, devices and technologies, creating holistic solutions and helping others do the same. That agility and openness is part of the fabric of today’s cloud-first, mobile-first world.

In the same way that we have listened to invaluable feedback about our products, we have also heard feedback about the MVP program itself. We’ve heard that the MVP program has had limitations in recognizing the breadth of work MVPs do and that the range of product teams MVPs want to communicate with is limited and that doing more with our field teams in local geographies is important.  I am pleased to announce that we are taking steps to act on this feedback and evolve the MVP program to support these objectives.  

Moving forward, the MVP Award structure will shift to encompass the broad array of community contributions across technologies. For our Developer and IT Pro oriented MVPs, we’re moving from 36 areas of technical expertise to a set of 10 broader categories that encompass a combined set of 90 technology areas—including open source technologies. This will enable much broader contribution recognition for these MVPs, coupled with a durable award title and will also eliminate the limitation of awarding MVP status in only one area.  Please click here to see the full overview of the new program.

This structure is designed to keep the program aligned with Microsoft’s biggest priorities and, at the same time, allow us all to be agile with the pace of innovation and change in the market. With much better insight and recognition of the wide range of contributions you make, we expect our product and local field teams to capitalize on this enhanced visibility and have broader and deeper connections with MVPs. In addition, investments are being made to add more value to the MVP-Microsoft relationship. For example,  Channel 9, our online video platform, will be opened up for the first time, to publishing by MVPs, as MVPs.

I’m committed to creating a great MVP Award experience for everyone and, as always, am eager to hear what the community thinks. I am very excited about what the future holds as we, as a community, work even more closely together to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.