Posts Tagged ‘information technology’

What Does A Microsoft Certified Partner Do?

February 16th, 2011 No comments

What is a Microsoft Certified Partner (or MCP)? An MCP is a private firm that offers customers Microsoft related products and services. These companies work worldwide to offer a range of Microsoft services under the Microsoft umbrella, yet remain independent. These services and products could include anything from education to technical support to original equipment manufacturer software to specialist software. Why would anyone want to become a Microsoft Certified Partner? Well, there are benefits. First of all, MCPs receive information about Microsoft products earlier than other users. They also receive a higher level of technical support and less expensive access to Microsoft software licenses. How does Microsoft benefit from this program? Microsoft has a group of very dedicated providers who are smart, and run modern businesses and are always ready to serve Microsoft’s clients’ needs. Microsoft’s Certified Partner certification program is meant for businesses that are successful in applying Microsoft’s technologies and platforms. Microsoft offers two different types of MCPs. They are the Microsoft Certified Partner and the Microsoft Gold Certified Partner. The Microsoft Gold Certified Partner must pass a much more difficult test to be awarded the “gold” certification. Once they gain that coveted certification they, in turn, have many more services available to them than those that don’t have the gold certification. Every potential Microsoft Certified Partner must have been in the business for five years and there are several tests that they have had to have passed. They will also need to have proven skills in the field of work in which they specialize. These partners are awarded access to discounts that are necessary for them to work in their specialty field. Staff of Gold Certified Partners must have the ability to plan, design, implement and manage customized computing solutions and environments around Microsoft technologies. The gold certification program includes a wide range of focus areas, including business intelligence, collaborative solutions, hosting, application services, learning solutions and security solutions. Microsoft Certified Partners must pay a membership fee each year. In recompense, they receive access to software licenses, early access to Microsoft beta software and many types of technical and development information that they can use in their businesses. They also receive up to ten copies of Office XP Developer Edition, twenty copies of Windows XP Professional Operating System and between ten and twenty Client Access License Seats for server access. Microsoft require its partners to upgrade their partner certifications when new platforms or software are released, thereby ensuring certification is kept up-to-date with Microsoft releases. A Microsoft Certified Partner is also able to access Microsoft Support 24 hours a day enabling them to give improved customer relations and support to each and every customer.