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Welcome to the June edition of Partner Center Technical Corner. This month, we review Solutions Partner designations and securing the channel as our spotlight topics, followed by a summary of recent releases. For quick reference, you can find the most up-to-date technical roadmap and essential Partner Center resources at the end of the blog. 


Spotlight: Solutions Partner with certified software designations

Within the Microsoft AI Cloud Partner Program, we offer distinct pathways for partners to differentiate themselves and stand out to customers according to their unique business models. These differentiated offerings help partners demonstrate their capabilities so customers can easily find and choose a proven partner. For early-stage ISV partners, we announced ISV Success last year to help them build, publish, and grow well-architected software solutions on the Microsoft Cloud. In March 2024, as part of our ongoing journey to make ISV partners successful, we introduced Solutions Partner with certified software designations, offerings for ISVs who are ready to differentiate their software solutions in the market. 

Attaining a Solutions Partner with certified software designation signifies that your solution meets technical criteria for interoperability with the Microsoft Cloud and demonstrates a proven track record of customer success. This distinction helps validate the quality, capability, reliability, and relevance of your software solution and drives positive customer experience, delivering on the value customers expect from solutions built on the Microsoft Cloud.


Spotlight: securing the channel

“Security is not only a technical issue, but a human one. It matters to millions of people around the world who use our products and services for communication, work, education, and entertainment. We have the skills, the passion, and the vision to make a positive difference in the world through our work,” Charlie Bell, Executive Vice President, Microsoft Security, noted in the Security Blog

Partners play a crucial role in our ability to protect our joint customers and raise the security baseline of our ecosystem. Nicole Dezen, Microsoft Chief Partner Officer and Corporate Vice President, Global Partner Solutions, stated in her recent blog Securing our future together, “We are implementing immediate and future changes that have the potential to impact some of our partners, and unfortunately, in some instances, with very little notice. In the next few days and months, we will be sending notifications that might require you, our trusted partners, to act quickly to help close security vulnerabilities.” To drive adoption of basic security hygiene we have identified and recently launched several initiatives and best practices, including:

  • Enabling Security defaults on existing Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) tenants that haven't yet adopted MFA (multifactor authentication). If CSP tenants cannot adopt Security Defaults, the next step is to enable Conditional Access policies to create a secure foundation. 
  • Requiring all admin users to have Multifactor Authentication (MFA).
  • Requiring all Azure customers to sign in with MFA.
  • Introducing the Security Workspace, which helps partners improve their security posture.

We will continue to improve security for all our partners and customers and help them adopt the Zero Trust Maturity Model and will keep introducing new tools and policies to secure your tenant, monitor their environment, provide visibility/telemetry into environmental threats, and manage identities with MFA enforcement.


Just released 

New commerce CSP partner-to-partner transfers: Partner Center now supports transferring new commerce license-based subscriptions from one partner to another. This is a key development that addresses several challenges our partners face when addressing partner mergers, transitions from Direct Bill to Indirect Reseller, and partners exiting the CSP program. Note that the transfer process requires agreement from both partners involved. 

Rewarding partner performance with two new incentives: MCI customer adds is a new incentive rewarding CSP partners for new customer acquisitions for Azure purchases, encouraging partners to drive both incremental revenue and new customer-tenants within Azure. In addition, the new program for Devices M365 conversion and renewal incentives provides device manufacturers additional incentives when a customer renews or converts a trial offer into subscriptions. 

Membership – ISV Success renewals: Partners who have reached their 1-year anniversary in the ISV Success Build and Publish offering can renew their membership for another 12 months if they have published a new app since last enrollment. The option to renew will become available to partners 30 days before the end date of the current benefit package. 

Insights for multiparty private offers: This feature empowers ISV and Channel partners to view marketplace offer purchases, usage, and revenue share. The enhanced revenue dashboard provides a comprehensive view of key performance indicators including top offers, top customers, and outstanding payments for commercial marketplace partners. Access these insights via dashboards, download hub, and programmatic API access in Partner Center. With the expansion to United Kingdom and Canada customers, partners can now also track revenue in customer transacted currencies. 

Account settings and Action Center: Check out the new account management page within the account settings workspace, available for all Microsoft AI Cloud Partner Program and CSP partners. The new experience streamlines and combines views to display all your program relationships. Assess and manage all your Partner Location Accounts (PLA) including their verification status in one table or easily leverage the card view that summarizes the number of locations, status, and provides an easy call to action for account verification. 

Services partner co-sell: This feature enables skilled services partners (SIs, MSPs) who attain Microsoft AI Cloud Partner Program designations to unlock better deal outcomes by working with Microsoft sellers in a co-selling motion. Qualified partners who have either solutions partner designations, specializations, or Azure Expert Managed Services Provider (MSP), can now co-sell with Microsoft sellers without having to publish a marketplace consulting services offer. Partners can leverage this feature to create Services co-sell opportunities in the Referrals workspace across a range of practices from presales-envisioning to proof of concept, deployment services, and managed services.


Partner Center Technical Roadmap and resources

Stay tuned to our blog for more updates and tips to make the most out of your partnership with Microsoft!



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