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Partner Questions Answered: Managed Services, Cloud, and White Label

October 11, 2010 at 12:20 pm PST

You have questions, we have answers. We gathered up questions we’ve been hearing from partners around the topic of managed services, cloud, and white label and sat down with one of the foremost experts on the topic: Todd Roth, Director of the Managed Services Channel Program at Cisco. In this Q&A, he addresses partner concerns around new consumption models, partner-to-partner collaboration, and highlights some new developments in the managed services realm.

And with new cloud service designations within the Managed Services Channel Program (MSCP) that were just announced, this is a good time to explain those as well.


Channels blog: Hi, Todd. Thanks for joining us. What does “cloud service designation within MSCP” mean?

Todd Roth: It’s the beginning of a new class of service designations that enables partners to align and brand their cloud-based offerings with Cisco. Offerings that are built on a Cisco-validated architecture.


CB: What are the designations and who can take advantage?

TR: There are two designations:

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Five Keys to a Successful Meeting with your Channel Partner

The best way to prepare for a meeting with your channel partner depends, in large part, on how long you have been working together. We’re going to look at five key points, assuming that you and the partner are starting from Square One. If you’ve been working with the same partner for a considerable period of time, you may already have done some of these. But be on the lookout for anything you might have missed.

#1: Look at your IT needs from a business perspective, as well as a technological perspective.

This is not as basic as it might sound. What are the pain points of your company? Where are your costs just a little too high? What types of functions are slipping through the cracks? As you can surmise, the true potential of technology runs much deeper than the basics around email, Internet access and whatever applications you currently may be using. Your partner may have some ideas for new software that can remove extra cycles or help your people more effectively track functions that somehow get lost in the shuffle.

#2: Provide an accurate accounting of the systems and software already in place.

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