Microsoft Offering Office 365 Resellers Additional Perks
At this week’s Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), Kurt DelBene, president of the Microsoft Office Division, hyped the IT channel’s role in building momentum for the new Office 365 cloud productivity suite. And to help keep things moving in that direction, Microsoft announced a series of Office 365 partner program enhancements, including free licenses for internal use, speedier payment and the ability to earn commissions when deploying the suite for Enterprise Agreement customers.
In his blog entry, Office 365 Product Manager Allen Filush highlighted the success that partners including Slalom Consulting — Microsoft Online Services Solution Partner of the Year 2011, incidentally — have had with reselling the cloud suite. Slalom apparently builds value-added offerings around Microsoft Office 365, providing tiered services at different price points to help match functionality with budget, and customers have responded with open wallets.
Microsoft sees Office 365 as the perfect on-ramp to the cloud. And partners are the front line in spreading the word. So Microsoft Online Services is adding the following perks for resellers, taken straight from that blog entry:
- Starting today, partners earn money faster with Office 365. We will now pay partners at the beginning of the quarter (not at the end), which will significantly improve our partners’ cash flow.
- Partners that help customers with Enterprise Agreements deploy Office 365 are now eligible to earn commissions. This opens up a significant opportunity for partners to work with some of the largest Microsoft customers in the world.
- Microsoft will provide partners with up to 250 enterprise licenses of Office 365 at no charge. This gives our partners the opportunity to use the latest in collaboration and communication technologies offered in Office 365 for the benefit of their own business.
I can’t see any Microsoft partner not liking these new perks. It’s no program-wide syndication offer, but I suspect they’re going make Office 365 resellers pretty happy.
We’ll have insights and news from Microsoft WPC all week, so stay tuned.