Many vendors still are wrapping their heads around the advent of the cloud and managed services. Additionally, organizations are considering how these technological advancements will impact channel operations and end-user demands.
Rather than fighting inevitable change, Cisco is evolving. During the annual Channel Partner Summit, which took place June 4-6 in Boston. Cisco executives shared how the company plans to become the “number-one IT company in the world” — and how it will bring channel partners along for the ride.
In a video interview, Chuck Robbins, SVP of Worldwide Field Operations, discussed Cisco’s ongoing dedication to its channel partners, especially as changes continue to take place in the IT marketplace.
Touching on changes in end-customer wants and needs across the Cisco solution set — from data centers, to the cloud and mobility — Robbins stated: “Both Cisco and its partners will be required to evolve our business models together.”
Robbins added that Cisco has a deep heritage of working with partners, and will continue to provide the resources and programs partners need to succeed.
“The reality is, our customers need solutions that are more than what we [Cisco] provide,” Robbins said. “They need other technology and solutions that augment what we offer. [That is why we need] partners who can bring business value to the customer, and the technology itself. We try to remain very consistent, which enables our partners to build sustainable business models, and we think it creates a huge competitive advantage for us.”
Specifically, Cisco drilled down further into the cloud by uncovering new features and benefits within its Cloud Partner Program. Bob Gault, VP of Partner Sales, revealed in a blog post that instead of competing with partners, Cisco is becoming a “cloud enabler.” This means that Cisco is helping customers “build, deploy and consume cloud services and at the same time, stimulate demand for partners’ Cisco Powered cloud and managed services.”
“We can help you evolve your day-to-day go-to-market approach for cloud, or we can provide you with an ecosystem of strategic partnership opportunities to help you along the way,” Gault said. “That’s why we designed the program the way we did: we want to enable partners to capture cloud computing opportunities with Cisco as Cloud Builders, Cloud Providers and Cloud Services Resellers.”
Gault provided more details on incentives and enhancements that were created to help partners become Cloud Services Resellers. Starting August 2013, existing partners that have a contract with a Cisco Cloud Services Provider will be qualified to be Cloud Services Resellers, and in turn, will receive the following benefits:
Additionally, Cisco unveiled the Cloud Business Transformation Playbook, which is designed to provide a detailed set of best practices that will help partners transition to making the cloud a key part of their business model. To ensure partners see success with their new ventures, Cisco also is providing the Business Transformation Workshop, as well as a Partner Business Transformation Video-on-Demand series. Both were designed to offer a series of workshops and educational sessions — both in-person and online — to support cloud developments and action plans.