What’s new for US partners the week of April 18, 2016

Find out what’s new for Microsoft partners. We’ll connect you to resources that help you build and sustain a profitable cloud business, connect with customers and prospects, and differentiate your business. Read previous issues of our online newsletter.

We provide real-time updates about the topics covered in this newsletter and other partner-related news and information on our US Partner Community Twitter channel.

To stay in touch with me and connect with other partners and Microsoft sales, marketing, and product experts, join our US Partner Community on Yammer and see other options to stay informed.

Top stories

Evolving MPN to help partners find greater success

The market is changing, and so are we. Over the next 18 months, we will retire some competencies and add new ones. The remaining competencies will better align your Silver and Gold competency recognition with the current and future needs of our shared customers, and allow us to focus our investments in continuing to create stronger connections between partners and our mutual customers.

New online tools that help you manage your MPN membership

You’ve asked us to simplify how you work with Microsoft, and we’ve just completed a refresh of the partner portal to help make managing your MPN membership easier. Start with the Essentials page to find the most common partner tasks and frequently requested links. From there, you can get to Incentives and Your Accounts and Reports (you’ll need to sign in for access to these), and you can view a more comprehensive membership guide as well.

Register for WPC 2016 by April 20 for the discounted all-access pass price of $1,995 

We hope you’ll join the US Partner Team at the premier Microsoft partner event in Toronto this July. WPC 2016 is your opportunity to interact face-to-face with business leaders from around the globe, identify and build new partnerships, and learn how to bring your cloud offer to market. The current price will increase on April 21, so we encourage you to secure your spot today.

April 20 partner sales training session: How to sell new Windows 10 and Office devices to your SMB customers

Small businesses want to get the same productivity and efficiency benefits from their hardware and software investments that big businesses get. Learn how to unlock new hardware and software opportunities, increase margins for your short- and long-term services, and cement your status as a trusted advisor to SMBs. We’ll explain how to position the combined story of Windows + Office + new devices and the offers, incentives, and materials that will help speed up your sales cycle.

April 20–21 technical partner training course: Introduction to Power BI

This virtual technical training for partner IT pros, presales technical roles, and partner developers provides an in-depth look at how to produce business intelligence solutions for customers. The course is delivered over two days, four hours each day.

Office 365 SMB partner sales workshops for Office 365 across the United States

Attend in-person sales training at an upcoming Drumbeat Grow SMB partner workshop. This level 200 training will help you master the sales skills needed for effective conversations with SMB customers about the value of Office 365 to their businesses. Learn to tailor and deliver the productivity message for specific scenarios and business needs, as well as respond to customer concerns about security, privacy, and compliance.

Cloud Platform University Online sales training

Cloud Platform University Online offers interactive, scenario-based online training. Each course is delivered over a four-week timeframe, and engages participants in an orchestrated set of learning experiences that include video, expert instruction, customer case study, discussion forum, and applied assignments. Registration is free, and participants complete assignments and activities at their own pace during the course timeframe. See the schedule through the end of June and register before the close date.

Resources and opportunities for developer partners

Whether you consider yourself an ISV, application builder, or developer, partner with Microsoft for the tools, resources, and support you need to build and market your app.

Beyond end of support: Seeing value in modernization

The end of extended support for SQL Server 2005 has passed, and many customers still using it will no longer receive security updates or hotfixes from Microsoft. But those customers are also missing out on the opportunity and benefits that come with running a modern data platform instead of one that is more than a decade old. Read the SQL Server team’s perspective about the path forward for customers to evaluate their technology needs and see how upgrading can transform their businesses.

Your path to profitability with the cloud starts with Microsoft

Microsoft US Channel Chief, Stephen Boyle, provides you with an update about your opportunities and resources for building and sustaining a profitable cloud business. From the new Modern Microsoft Partner eBook series to the updated Cloud Adoption Profitability Playbook to investments for app developers and in the Internet of Things, Microsoft can help propel your business forward.


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