The new SBSC

On May 5, 2010, in news, by

https://training.partner.microsoft.com/learning/app/management/registrationex/LMS_Registration.aspx?UserMode=0&ActivityId=580853

So the changes in the Microsoft partner program are coming out.  And if you listen to the webcast (try the link here) and in listening to the changes there are changes and then there are changes.

http://blogs.msdn.com/mssmallbiz/archive/2010/04/20/can-you-believe-it-the-end-of-sbsc-and-a-shift-away-from-the-smb-market.aspx

First off the SBSC is not dead and in fact is quite alive.  What has been pushed off is the Small Business competency — it’s been delayed. 

Now here’s where I’m reading between the lines.  Between now and your reenrollment date, starting October 2010, if you want to keep that Blue logo that looks good on your resume and business cards you need to take the next set of exams.

http://blogs.msdn.com/mssmallbiz/archive/2010/05/04/what-exams-qualify-for-the-small-business-specialist-community-sbsc.aspx

But Susan, you say, my clients don’t care about that logo.  Fine then stop asking Microsoft to keep pushing it and saving it and fixing their www.pinpoint.com site.  Marketing is about you.  It’s not about Microsoft here.  Sure they can put some awareness in front of your client, but at the end of the day it’s what YOU do with that logo.  They can help to provide you with information and resources, but it’s about you.

As we were in the SBSC town hall on Sunday someone leaned over to me and said it’s the same topics over and over again.

Licensing sucks.  Microsoft doesn’t give me resources.  Microsoft doesn’t listen to me.  Microsoft doesn’t give enough resources to the SBSC.  Microsoft doesn’t….. year after year we’re chasing the tail of the dog.

Step back a moment and ask yourself what the Google partner/channel program gives you?   The Apple channel program?  Yeah, I thought so.  If we had a perfect world we’d have a duplicate universe to test out plans and changes and 20 years to ensure that the transition from the old fashioned partner channel of on premises solutions to the new fashioned cloud project manager model is as best as can be done.  Unfortunately we don’t have that ability so it may be a bit bumpy in the transition.  Microsoft has to compete or die.  As part of this is the move to hosted/cloud solutions.  They may, and will step on the toes of the channel.  The goal of cloud computing is a subscription revenue model. 

That doesn’t mean it’s a bit tricky for Microsoft to try move to a subscription model but at the same time not tick off their channel programs any more than they already have. 

So I think once again I have to come and blog to you that this is exam up or shut up time.  If you want to see the SBSC succeed and you are currently a SBSC this is the time you need to sit down, take an exam and show if you want to keep that SBSC going or not.

http://www.sbstraining.net/post/2009/08/SBS-2008-Training-Kit-now-available.aspx  If you feel you need some exam help, buy Beatrice’s book.  (Not to mention she’s a great woman so you’ll be supporting her efforts in the small business marketplace in the past.)

So bottom line it’s up to you.

 If you want the SBSC to continue, suceed and grow, take an exam this summer.

 

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