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How Do You Shorten Time to Market, Increase Profits, Deploy the Best Solutions for Customers?

January 12, 2012 at 4:13 pm PST

Last week I wrote about 8 new year’s resolutions Cisco is making to partners. And if you’ve ever set a resolution and successfully achieved it, you know that having a trusted friend there to help track your progress or call when you need support is key to keeping those resolutions.

Consider Cisco your trusted friend to help make and keep those resolutions with two programs to ensure you achieve success in 2012: Steps to Success and Partner Practice Builder. Both are free resources that are available to all Cisco Registered partners. Oh, did I say they’re free?

These two programs help you optimize, support, plan, and develop strategies for success and profitability in 2012.  Here’s how these tools work: Read More »

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Cisco’s 8 New Year’s Resolution for Partners

January 4, 2012 at 3:23 pm PST

Happy 2012, partners! Inspired by Channel Maven’s lively list of resolutions, I began to pontificate on Cisco’s new year’s resolutions for partners this year.

1. First and foremost: profitability.

C’mon, who doesn’t want more profits in 2012? Services now represent 40-50% of Cisco channel partners business, up from 20% five years ago. Our recently created Services Rules of Engagement offers partners a definitive roadmap on how to engage with Cisco Services and maximize your Cisco services investment.

Plus profitability programs like Cisco’s Value Incentive Program (VIP) ensure that you’re rewarded for focusing your practice on Cisco’s architectures. Stay tuned for new signup periods.

Check out the full list of incentives on Partner Central.

2. Helping partners help customers become one with the cloud.

To help ensure partners have a successful Year of the Cloud, Cisco’s Cloud Partner program (with three tracks) will help you prepare for growth in cloud adoption. Combine that with CloudVerse to help you build public, private, and hybrid clouds for customers and you’ve got a winning combo. You can’t lose with the intelligence of the network, the power of the data center, and the flexibility of cloud applications.

3. Work less! Programs and services to make your job easier. Read More »

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HCS: Now bringing flexible customer collaboration to an SMB near you

I’m pleased to announce that customer collaboration solutions are becoming available in the cloud with the Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution for Contact Center (HCS) in early 2012. These solutions are optimized for companies with 500-1,000 agents, with emphasis on scalability, simplicity, flexibility, and speed.

Scalability allows the technology to be deployed to a wide range of customers. Thus, powerful customer collaboration solutions can scale based on the specific size and makeup of the customer. Gone are the days of one-size-fits-all contact center solutions; now if you’re a small to medium-sized business you can cater to your customers’ needs and concerns with the same tools as a large one, and at vastly accelerated speed.

Midsize businesses often do not have the resources to deal with complex IT systems, which is why simplicity is paramount. With the simplified management of a cloud-based contact center solution, SMB’s IT departments can focus their time on more urgent matters.

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TelePresence in the Cloud

With five years of Cisco TelePresence successfully under foot, I’m eagerly looking to the future of the technology. And where does this future lie? Well, I’m not a fortune-teller, but I’ll make a prophecy:  The future of telepresence is, in part, in the cloud.

To date, telepresence has made its name largely as an enterprise technology. Its traditional infrastructure requires IT know-how and onsite maintenance capabilities. On the contrary, hosted telepresence requires no special technical expertise, nor does it demand a large equipment investment. Affordability, ease of deployment, and automation make a hosted telepresence service a highly feasible collaboration technology for smaller businesses.

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SCORE Helps Small Business Owners Identify Cyber Security Issues and Protect Themselves from Attack

Guest post from our friends at SCORE

W. Kenneth Yancey, Jr., CEO
Ken Yancey is responsible for developing SCORE’s business plan and vision as well as coordinating national program efforts and all the association’s management operations. He also directs the efforts of the headquarters staff to serve and support the 370 chapters across the country.  Prior to joining SCORE in 1993, Ken was Executive Director at the National Business Association. A graduate of Texas A&M University (BBA/Finance), Ken is a recipient of the USA Freedom Corp Award of Excellence, the ASAE Summit Award, and the BSA Goose Creek District Award of Merit.

These days, with technology playing a larger role in small business success, it is important for small business owners to identify cyber security issues and protect themselves from attack.  And that’s exactly what SCORE can do through its free mentoring and resources from in the world of cyber security.

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