Feature

Cisco updates partner certification scheme

Market conditions allied to partner and customer requirements provided the impetus for Cisco’s shake-up of its channel programme, according to the company’s managing director of Emea channels, Paris Arey.

Cisco’s first major partner programme overhaul in eight years had been designed to provide a “sustainable business model”, he claimed.

The move away from volume discounts towards a value-based model reflected the channel’s direction towards differentiation and value add, he asserted.

The flat discount for the various partner levels would “level the playing field” and enable partners to compete on value add, rather than price.

Arey explained that to encourage technical specialisation, the programme would broaden Cisco’s certification standard by allowing standards other than CCIE to contribute to partner certification.

One of the additions to the programme, which begins on 2 July, is the customer satisfaction rating.

Cisco will share its tools for assessing customer satisfaction with partners, setting goals where necessary, as it becomes one of the company’s core requirements for partners.

While Landis is not yet an approved Cisco distributor in the UK, managing director Mike Watkins affirmed it “would be participating one way or another” in Cisco’s latest partner certification scheme. He acknowledged that Landis was making a push into Cisco in the UK, especially on the services side, confirming he had recently hired ten Cisco-certified staff.

And Logical’s infrastructure practice manager, Mike Cummins, claimed the new programme would allow the company to differentiate itself from other gold partners and “build the certification around our business model”.

He said the updated programme had put Cisco in front of competitor Nortel.


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This was first published in March 2001

 

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