There appears to be an upsurge in training demand for Microsoft’s Office 2007, but the next wave – which is on its way – is going to be Microsoft Windows Server 2008.

This demand, said Dominique Lagasse, sales manager at black empowered IT training company, IT Intellect, shows that Microsoft is still the “king of the desktop”.
“There has been a lot of talk about Microsoft perhaps losing a substantial share of the desktop marketplace due to Linux-based free-to-market software, or openware, but this is just not happening. We are seeing a rush of corporate clients, and individuals, who are currently wanting training on Office 2007. Once we are through this busy period we foresee a rush for training on Windows Server 2008.”
Lagasse said that although Windows Server is only due out in Q1 of 2008, IT Intellect will be running “First Look Clinics” so that users can “get a jump on the Q1 release of Windows Server 2008”.
He said Windows Server 2008 training will definitely be the “next wave”.
“There is a lot of demand; and this shows that Microsoft’s desktop suite remains the dominant force in the desktop marketplace – and this is unlikely to change any time soon.”
Lagesse said Microsoft “certainly doesn’t seem to be losing any steam to open source software.”
From an integration perspective he said Office 2007 integrates seamlessly with all server products available on the market. It is also a far better product then its predecessor and is “also very space conscious in terms of document sizes”.
“This is a big help in today’s business environment where the end user – and companies – are being bombarded with information, including a barrage of graphics and video-based files.”
He says that as South Africa moves closer to the 2010 Soccer World Cup there is going to be an intensification of  ICT training, including on the Microsoft platform, due to a worrying ICT skills shortage.
“Right now grade 12 pupils are going to be having a firm eye on their future and a career in technology is certainly still a good move for those with the talent. There was talk in the market recently that the market is flooded with Microsoft software engineers, but I don’t believe this is true. There is still a demand for them – and it is still a premier certification   for anyone that wants to get into IT. We are expecting an influx of school-leavers early next year, many of whom I am sure will be focusing on honing their skills in Office 2007, and the next wave of Microsoft technologies.”
IT Intellect, which focuses on the individual and corporate markets has offices in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban.