We are in the midst of amazing change that is defining and shaping relationships with our partners and customers in new and profound ways. This change is being driven in large part by the dramatic acceleration of the Cloud in the enterprise. According to Forrester Research, there has been a four-fold increase in the number of enterprises that are now using public cloud with Cloud applications expected to grow from $52 billion in 2013 to $133 billion by 2020.
This explosive growth translates to greater demand – and opportunity – for our three core business cloud services. In productivity, Office 365 grew more than +100% year-over-year for the last 14 quarters; in platform, Azure is seeing accelerated growth; and in business applications, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online subscription revenue per partner doubled over the past two years.
But just as the Cloud brings opportunity, it also demands rapid change – and we are evolving our programs to help support our partners in their move to the Cloud. To that end, today we are announcing:
- Readiness Partner Program Enhancements: We are enhancing our Readiness Partner Program with changes aimed at transforming the readiness experience for Microsoft Dynamics partners. We’re heavily investing in partner readiness to increase partner capability, address partner capacity and bring down the cost of training. To do this, we are improving courseware quality and content, investing in a new online delivery platform to elevate user and learning experiences, and we’re pleased to announce a price reduction of the partner training pack from $6,000 USD to $1,000 USD giving partners unlimited access to improved introductory and intermediate online training.
- Cloud Business Application Competency: Today, Phil Sorgen, our Corporate VP for Worldwide Partner Channel, announced a set of new Cloud Performance competencies that recognize partners’ proven cloud performance. In addition to the Small and Midmarket Cloud Solutions competency (for partners selling Microsoft Office 365 to small and mid-market customers), the Cloud Productivity competency (for partners deploying Microsoft Office 365 for enterprise customers) and the Cloud Platform Competency (for partners who specialize in delivering infrastructure and SaaS solutions on Microsoft Azure), the company announced the Cloud Business Applications competency for partners selling and deploying Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online. These new competencies are building blocks for partners’ cloud practice. The Cloud Business Application Competency will provide the support, benefits and incentives partners need to grow their Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online business.
- Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online on Microsoft’s Open Licensing Program: We are also excited to announce further licensing changes that make Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online more accessible to SMBs. The addition of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online to Microsoft Open Licensing Program, which will take place in this fiscal year, means that small business and mid-market customers will be able to gain access to the full suite of Microsoft Online Services in a way that fits their current engagement with their partner or service provider. Specifically they will have access to a world class, cloud-based customer relationship management via their existing Microsoft Open Licensing agreements. This represents a huge opportunity for Microsoft distributors and resellers who will be able to transact Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online to their existing and new customers through the licensing model they are used to. Additionally, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online Certified Software Advisors will typically partner with a reseller or join a distributor’s channel, to enjoy new revenue streams. The average value of the solution delivered will be higher (than only selling Office 365), as will the associated services revenues.
- Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider Program: Microsoft recognizes the importance of making it easier for partners and customers to use Microsoft cloud solutions. The Microsoft Cloud Solutions Provider Program, which was announced today as well, removes barriers for partners and complements existing channel models to enable partners to directly manage the entire lifecycle of their customers’ cloud subscription. This program will give partners more flexibility in billing, provisioning and supporting their customers when selling Microsoft’s cloud services. The first cloud services to become available through this program will be Microsoft Office 365 and Windows Intune with capabilities enabled over the next 12 months. The platform will be expanded to deliver all of Microsoft commercial cloud offerings through the same experience, including Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online.
These changes, along with the new dedicated government cloud for Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online offering announced last week demonstrates our commitment to offer the most secure and trusted business solutions in the Cloud. It further reflects the indispensable value business applications play together with productivity and platform in a comprehensive cloud solution – Value that only Microsoft can offer.
This value comes to life for customers through the Microsoft Cloud for Business and Microsoft Dynamics is at the strategic core in this offering. Our Dynamics partners play a vital role in delivering great experiences that drive enterprise productivity and bringing cloud solutions together for customers. Together with our partners, we are on a great path to fully realize the amazing opportunities of the Cloud.
Please check the Microsoft Dynamics News Center for more information on these announcements, our products and services and for a press release coming on Tuesday announcing the winners of our Partner Awards.