Our annual Partner Summit kicks off November 13th in Las Vegas. And you’ll want to catch this one, as we’ve transformed many facets of the Partner Program this year—with more exciting things in the works for FY19. Can’t make it in person? You can also stream it live. Before you attend, let’s take a look at updates to Cisco Partner Programs over the past year.

Your continued success is our top priority. We know that in order to help you navigate the transition to a digital environment, new and different capabilities will be required. And that is what we’ve centered our program evolution around – all to create greater value for our customers. We are doing this with a renewed focus on simplification, predictability, and recognizing and rewarding new capabilities.

Beginning with our Competency programs, we have focused our evolution on simplifying and improving your ease of doing business with Cisco while helping you to differentiate from your competitors. And we’ve transformed our Deal Registration and Incentive programs to reward you for your investments!

Benefit from new and expanded specializations

Being specialized in Cisco solutions is a great way to grow your business, do more for your customers, and increase your profitability. We transformed our Express, Advanced, and Master Specializations to make that easier for you.

We want you to spend less time getting certified, so you can get the benefits faster. That’s why we:

  • Merged our Express Specializations into one, with flexible tracks
  • Automated the approval of the Select Certification
  • Streamlined our Advanced Specializations
  • Revitalized our Master Specializations

Already, more than 14,000 Express partners have signed up for specialized tracks. It now costs 60% less for you to invest in Express. And you can renew your badges on a single date, rather than having to remember several.

We revitalized our Master Specializations. You can renew by earning points or completing an audit, and you can earn points by submitting certain business tasks. And we added Master Networking, which provides recognition for your expertise, expands your software, services, and recurring revenue opportunities.

Thanks to your positive feedback and participation, we’re happy to announce that with VIP 33, Master Networking will include the Master bonus, in alignment with other architectures.

As we continue to support your transition to digital, we will enhance across all specializations–providing you with the right training and the right resources so you have the right capabilities to land software properly and ensure full technical activation of our solutions.

Get recognized for your expertise! As customers move to digitize their businesses, finding partners with specific expertise in their industry is critical. We currently have ~20 partners badged as experts in healthcare, retail, manufacturing, media, and education, each one differentiated in Partner Locator. And another 60 are earning badges right now!

We also added 50% more Continuous Learning points on eligible offerings. This means that partners who have Industry Expertise recognition will be granted extra learning points—saving time and resources when renewing specializations. If you’d like to join in, you can view the requirements here.

Register deals quickly

We know you’d prefer to focus more on selling—and less on registering deals. So last November, we simplified our deal registration process. Already you’ve registered 60,000+ deals under the new process. It also lets us approve deals under $50,000 more quickly. And we’ve since expanded it to more places in the US, Canada, Latin America, Asia-Pacific, and Japan.

Consolidating 15 Hunting and Teaming program tracks into two led to 14 times more deal registration volumes over FY17, with a 300% growth year over year. And for Security, we saw six times more deal registration volumes over FY17 and 432% year over year growth in bookings.

Not only that, you can use our Migration Incentive Program to encourage customers to go digital—and land recurring revenue. Since we kicked off the program, our partners have registered over 11,000 deals globally. Starting in the second half of this year, you will be able to use our new “Send IT Back” App as an easy way to quote, order, and return hardware. Not only will this make things more efficient for you, it’s a great way to look out for the environment.

Get more incentives, faster

We are continuously looking to simplify, innovate, and evolve our programs to make doing business with Cisco easier, and to increase your relevance in the marketplace, differentiate your capabilities from your competitors, and reward you for your investments.

We’re constantly looking for ways to make our incentives more consistent and more aligned to our new selling motions: Select, Onboard, Implement, Use, Adopt, and Renew. We want to make it even easier for you to take part and get rewards. You can now take advantage of:

  • Ability to stack Enterprise Networking Bundles with the Migration Incentive Program
  • Expanded VIP Annuity with SD-WAN and FLEX offerings
  • Receive higher rebates within Account Breakaway on offers like Hyperflex, UCS, and Nexus

As Cisco makes the strategic transition to software in order to focus on lifecycle selling, we are evolving our flagship program, VIP, to reward across annuities so that you are rewarded across the lifecycle. We are recognizing partners who are consciously driving customer success following landed deals with activating software and creating greater customer value.

Much more to come

We hope you’re as excited as we are about how our Partner Programs are evolving with the ever-changing tech world. You can count on our programs to power your growth, extend your market relevance and focus on your profitability.

I’m excited to share more big news at our Programs Impact Session during Partner Summit. I look forward to seeing those of you who will be attending—and for those of you who aren’t, I encourage you to view the sessions virtually! There is much more to come on the Program evolution horizon.

See you soon!


Sandra Flinders

Senior Director

Global Partner Programs