Dimension Data Learning Solutions (DDLS) has been appointed by Microsoft Business Solutions to train resellers on its Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) suites.
DDLS will deliver technical training and consulting services to more than 60 Microsoft partners that specialise in the software giant's Great Plains, Axapta and Navision products.
The deal opened up opportunities for DDLS to grow its training business into the end-user community, general manager, Steve Ross, said.
"As more large-scales organisations implement ERP, there will be a greater need for skills on the ground," he said.
DDLS would develop its relationship with Microsoft to take over more operational aspects to the training, Ross said.
"Our appointment fitted in with the fact that, as a Microsoft partner already, we have a dedicated training business," he said.
With the additional training contracts currently retained by DDLS, those working with Microsoft products would see the benefit of learning in real-life scenarios, Ross said.
"In the past a lot of companies had their own training business, but these often involved learning isolated applications," he said. "We also train for networking, database and security companies, and can provide skills across a realistic IT environment.
"The battleground is now all about skills transfer," Ross said.. "Companies need to ensure they are not myopic when it some to their skills base."
DDLS offers certifications in security, ITIL and networking, as well as specific certifications for solutions from vendors, including Cisco, Check Point and Novell. It was the first Microsoft Gold Certified Partner for Learning Solutions in Australia.
DDLS has hired former Microsoft employee, John Richardson, to drive attendance to its training programs.
He will concentrate on building close partner relationships and helping partners identify and build margin opportunities.
Microsoft partner group director, Kerstin Baxter, chose to outsource education on Microsoft Business Solutions to allow the company to concentrate on its core activities.
"For us to be able to maintain the quality of our offerings, we don't have the infrastructure to keep up the level of training," she said. "We decided to engage a very qualified training partner and put the offer out to tender.
"This allows Dimension Data - a Gold Learning Solutions Partner - to develop the Microsoft part of their business," she said.
Microsoft chose DDLS because of its national presence. It would remain its sole education provider for the time being.