What’s new for US partners the week of June 27, 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

Two weeks until WPC 2016! Planning guides to help you prepare

WPC 2016 is rapidly approaching. Below, we’ve provided you with links to materials that will help you prepare for the conference. From the agenda to wi-fi, and everything in between, these downloadable guides are indispensable.

Not yet registered for WPC 2016? The price will increase on July 1

The Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference, our annual business and sales event for partners, is expected to sell out. If you’re not yet registered, make your decision soon. We hope you’ll join us for the content, connections, and conversations that will prepare partners for new opportunities with Microsoft and with each other.

ICYMI: US Partner Team recommendations for sessions and activities at WPC 2016

Over the past few weeks, members of the US Partner Team have shared information and recommendations about WPC 2016. In case you missed those posts, here’s a roundup of those links. The information and resources in these blog posts are also shared in the new US Partner’s guide to WPC 2016. Leading up to the conference, watch the US Partner Community blog as more of our US Partner Team subject-matter experts share their recommendations.

What to know about the US Partner agenda for WPC 2016

The WPC 2016 United States agenda differs slightly from the general agenda. There are three important things to know if you are a US Partner attendee. First, the Microsoft North America General Session (US01) on Tuesday at 4:00PM is the keynote/regional session for US partners. Second, the US Partner Celebration on Tuesday night is different than the Worldwide Partner Celebration on Wednesday night. You will need a wristband to enter Tuesday’s US-only event,, and can pick yours up in the US Regional Lounge on Sunday, Monday, or Tuesday. Third, there are no US sessions or activities planned for Thursday.

A profitable practice is possible with the modern Microsoft partner pillars

If concerns about how to build and sustain a profitable cloud practice are top of mind as you look ahead, Microsoft has information and resources that can help you assess your business and build the right cloud plan.

The Microsoft trusted cloud: how to encourage your customers’ confidence

As you work with your customers on their digital transformation and encourage them to embrace cloud and hybrid solutions, be prepared to answer their questions and concerns about the privacy and security of their data. Leading this discussion with your customers can be powerful and persuasive, and help you close cloud sales faster.

Openness at Microsoft: opportunities for Microsoft partners

Microsoft provides an open and extensible cloud platform—a hybrid cloud approach that gives customers enterprise-grade technology in their own datacenter and in the Microsoft global datacenters. If you have customers that have made significant investments in open source software, there are opportunities for you to integrate their software with the Microsoft platform.

SharePoint 2016 and new partner opportunities

SharePoint 2016 is now generally available, and new hybrid capabilities that enable on-premises customers to tap into the innovation that’s part of Office 365 means that there are new partner opportunities.

What to know about earning a MPN cloud competency

With the recent announcement about retiring several of the MPN competencies so we can better focus on your success with cloud, here’s a refresher about the five cloud competencies that demonstrate partner expertise with Microsoft Azure, Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, and Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite. Review our blog post about getting started with the cloud competencies.

Summer 2016 US Partner training schedules

Summer training schedules for Skype for Business and Microsoft Azure have just been published, with courses through the end of July, with updates as soon as we learn about new offerings for August and September. Look for new data platform/analytics, Office 365, and enterprise mobility schedules soon. And, the Hot Sheet, our comprehensive training schedule, is always up-to-date.

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