VMware has taken the wrappers off its new Partner Network program which aims to help partners with delivering virtualisation solutions.
The new program offers access to the revamped information portal, extensive sales and services tools, margin opportunities and competency-based training.
Channel director, David Blackman, said based on partner feedback, the vendor needed to make some enhancements and simplify the partner program.
“It’s good timing with new product releases due to come out and the growth of the partner community globally,” he said. “We also released so many different solutions over the last 12 months that we needed to upgrade our program to cover all the changes that have happened.”
Previously, VMware had a basic partner portal in place based on its earlier technology.
“It wasn’t that simple to navigate,” Blackman said. “The new partner portal has been revamped and we’ve included tools such as a services IP area, where partners can create service enablement tools like standardised service kits.”
Partners can access competency-based training covering four areas: Infrastructure virtualisation, business continuity, desktop virtualisation and virtualisation management. It aims to cover support for a wide range of VMware partners such as solution providers, corporate resellers, system builders, service providers, system integrators and OEMs.
The revamped portal, called Partner Central, features marketing and sales tools, leads modules, access to market development funds, service IP and other tools that enable partners to grow their virtualisation practice.
The existing tier structure will remain in place, which includes premier, enterprise and professional as well as a registered entry- partner level. At the premier level, VMware has about 10 partners across A/NZ, more than 100 in the enterprise space and over 1000 professional partners. To move through the tiers, partners would need to establish competencies in key areas.
“We’re investing back into the partner community,” Blackman said. “We’re really trying to help them with training, certifications, information and competencies.”
In February, the vendor announced the launch of its Partner University, which is designed as a virtual campus to provide partners with access to training and education on VMware products, services and solutions from pre- through to post-sales. The University has been updated to include access to its virtualisation solution competencies.
The Partner Network includes advantage+, which is a registration program that offers margin enhancements. Depending on the program level, partners will be rewarded for their investment through obtaining an upfront discount to distribution and a back-end rebate program.
Newsolution+ will reward partners with additional margin opportunity when they complete one of the new competencies and sell related VMware solutions such as VMware View, VMware Site Recovery Manager, VMware vCenter Lab Manager, VMware vCenter Stage Manager and VMware vCenter Lifecycle Manager.
The Alliance Affiliate Initiative offers co-marketing opportunities for partners. Services enablement tools including service kits, solution acceleration kits, delivery methodologies and service automation tools will also be made available to partners at the different program levels.