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Avnet arms channel partners with new cloud training program

Three new training and certification courses are designed to help Avnet's partners learn not only about the cloud, but how they can leverage it to build repeat business and revenue

Avnet Technology Solutions is arming its Canadian and U.S. channel partners with some new tools to help them move from providing on-premise solutions to annuity-based cloud services.

The Tempe, Arizona-based company launched its Avnet Cloud Solutions offering inMay, a team dedicated to helping Avnet’s VAR, MSP and ISV partnersdevelop off-premise cloud solutions (including backup and recovery,security, application hosting and management, and data centre as aservice) as they make the shift to an annuity-based revenue model. Nowthe firm has followed that up by launching a new suite of trainingprograms to help those same channel partners develop this newer type ofoff-premise cloud practice and the recurring revenue streams that flowfrom it.

“There are unique areas of knowledge and skill our partners are tellingus they need specific to cloud computing. So (this is)training and education across cloud practices to make our partners morevaluable to the delivery of workloads in the off-premise cloud space,”said Tim FitzGerald, vice-president of Avnet Cloud Solutions.

The training program addresses the simple fact that making the leapfrom providing on-premise solutions to annuity-based cloud offeringshas been a challenging task for many channel partners of Avnet andother vendors.

A time of transition
“Operationally there are challenges when you migrate or transform howyou’ve historically done business in a capital (expenditure) orientedmodel where you might now offer additional offerings delivered in an opex (operational expenditure) model where you’re paid in a contractingmodel,” FitzGerald said of the journey many Avnet partners areembarking on.

“They’ve gone from ‘Let me sell one big deal’ and then not had totransact with that customer for two to four years later – and gettingpaid one thirty-sixth of the revenue. Helping them think through whatthey do is part of the value proposition that we deliver,” FitzGeraldsaid.

The new training program is divided up into three major focus areas:cloud practices, cloud workloads and cloud offerings. The courses aredesigned not only to help partners boost their cloud knowledge, butalso teach them specific ways to grow their business and revenue withcloud-based offerings for customers.

Avnet has also teamed up with ITpreneurs to offer some of the trainingat a reduced rate for Avnet channel partners. Based in the Netherlands,ITpreneurs works with U.S.-based CompTIA and the Cloud CredentialCouncil to offer a vendor-neutral cloud certification program, anindustry-wide certification that Avnet said will add some cloud cacheto its channel partners.

The training will help Avnet’s channel partners compete in the cloudmarketplace by “elevating their role to that of a trusted advisor whocan help their customers adopt cloud computing,” FitzGerald added.

Christine WongChristineWong is a Staff Writer at ITBusiness.ca and CDN. E-mail her at cwong@itbusiness.ca,connect on ,follow her on Twitter,and join in the conversation on the IT BusinessFacebook Page.