As my colleague Murali Sitaram shared in his recent blog, our Oct 16 announcement focused on providing customers with choice — more options in how they deploy robust collaboration offerings based on their specific needs and requirements. As customers evaluate the options — private, public and hybrid cloud — and ultimately deploy, many will turn to Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS) partners to find valuable options to meet their business needs.
Cisco HCS partners are cloud providers, systems integrators, and resellers who offer a hosted collaboration solution that is certified as Cisco Powered by Cisco. This offering includes our Cisco Collaboration portfolio in a “as-a-service” cloud-based offering.
Our strategy is to enable any and all authorized Cisco Collaboration partners to offer Cisco cloud-based collaboration solutions. By leveraging the Cisco Cloud Partner Program, partners can participate in a number of ways. Cloud Providers may invest in the infrastructure, licenses and staff to stand up, operate and sell Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution services — an offer that is certified as Cisco Powered. Cloud Resellers can establish a business relationship with Cisco Cloud Providers to resell their Cisco Powered HCS solution. Cloud Builders can build public and private cloud solutions for their customers. The beauty of this framework is that partners can participate in any or all of these program tracks.
Let me expand a bit on what it means for a Cisco Cloud Provider to have their offer certified as Cisco Powered. To enable differentiation in the market and ensure a robust customer experience, Cisco HCS Cloud Providers must own and operate a NOC, have dedicated certified staff, and pass an independent third party audit.
In the past year, the number of Cisco HCS partners has more than doubled. Cloud as a delivery model is accelerating, and Cisco’s recent announcements are further enabling our partners to deliver even greater value to customers. This means more global choice for customers.
Say a customer has a trusted Cisco Collaboration partner they rely on today, then through that same partner they can accelerate the rate of their collaboration adoption through additional complementary cloud-based deployment options. No new relationships to build. No break in momentum. One partner regardless of deployment model.
If a customer is seeking a cloud-based collaboration solution, they have a number of options from which to choose. They can make that choice with confidence that all partners can provide the right expertise and best-in-class collaboration offerings because those partners have invested to have their Cisco HCS offer certified. These partners can package a trusted, secure, best-in-class hosted collaboration solution based on the Cisco architecture with additional services they uniquely offer — such as access to SIP trunking and other 3rd party applications and services — providing added value and a customized experience for each customer.
This is all good news for customers who want an integrated collaboration experience from the most capable partners in the industry. Customers can enjoy greater flexibility, new capabilities, and a level of customization that aligns to their unique needs.
I encourage you to learn more about Cisco HCS and the partners who offer it. For help in determining which collaboration deployment model is right for your business – including the role Cisco HCS partners can play — I recommend you watch our recent webcast on this topic.