Cisco Accelerates Channel Evolution to Network-Based Architectures With New Specializations and Learning Partner Program
New Borderless Networks, Collaboration and Data Center Architecture Specializations and Architecture-Based Training to Help Partners Evolve Business Models
Edison Peres, senior vice president, Worldwide Channels, Cisco
SAN JOSE, Calif., April 11, 2011 – To help its global community of channel partners realize the full benefits of network-centric architectures, Cisco today announced that it is evolving its industry-leading Channel Partner Program by introducing new architecture specializations for Borderless Networks, Collaboration and Data Center. By taking an architectural approach to networking, channel partners can become more relevant to customers, grow more profitably and differentiate themselves from the competition. To accelerate the transition to architectural skills and capabilities, Cisco is evolving its Learning Partner Program to deliver enhanced architectural training to channel partners and customers through its global network of more than 450 Learning Partners.
New Architecture Specializations
Cisco is adding three advanced architecture-focused specializations to its Resale Channel Partner Program: Advanced Borderless Network Architecture Specialization, Advanced Collaboration Architecture Specialization, and Advanced Data Center Architecture Specialization.
Beginning in August 2012, partners must attain all three architecture specializations in order to achieve Cisco Gold Certification. Cisco Silver Certified Partners will be required to have a minimum of one architecture specialization, and Cisco Premier Certified Partners can have either one of the architecture specializations or the Cisco Express Foundation Specialization to achieve certification status beginning in August 2012.
To ensure a smooth recertification process, Cisco is providing a transition period of 16 to 28 months for existing Cisco Certified Partners. The architecture specializations do not become a mandatory requirement for certifications until a partner’s anniversary date beginning August 2012 through July 2013.
Cisco has also reduced the cost of certifications and decreased the training required to achieve the new certifications. For a new Cisco Gold Certification, the cost has been reduced by approximately $50,000, and the total training hours have been reduced by up to 25 percent.
Cisco is also offering up to $5,000 in Cisco Learning Credits for each of the first 500 partners to complete the recertification process.
Learning Partner Evolution
Cisco is announcing the evolution of its Learning Partner Program, which will feature two tracks — the Learning Partner Associate track and the new Learning Partner Specialized track. The tracks and architectural focus will help channel partners thrive in an architectural framework and speed customer adoption of Cisco’s architectural approach to networking.
In the Learning Partner Associate track, Cisco Learning Partners will focus on core technology training and preparing end-users for career certification.
In the new Learning Partner Specialized track, Cisco Learning Partners will evolve their practices to provide specialized training in specific areas of expertise mapping to Cisco Architecture Specializations.
Cisco Authorized Learning Partners are key catalysts for the growth and professional development of more than 1 million Cisco certified engineers globally.
The Cisco Learning Partner Program continues to grow, with a network of more than 450 strategic partners located more than 130 countries globally.
Cisco Authorized Learning Partners provide best-in-class authorized training and enablement to more than 300,000 Cisco customers and channel partners annually worldwide.