Digital Equipment is joining the vendor rush to send resellers back to school. The company's systems business unit is preparing to introduce formal reseller exams as it rolls out stage three of its accreditation process.
The company is expected to get the certification scheme up and running this year, 12 months later than it had originally planned, and two years after it had signalled its intentions to the channel to introduce the programme.
Resellers will have to employ minimum numbers of qualified sales and technical staff in return for Digital authorisation. But Digitial has not yet decided on numbers, nor has it indicated how resellers are expected to pay for training.
John Nicholson, Digital Systems channel manager, said: 'We've looked at whether the charge will be refundable from co-op or whether res-ellers will pay.' Graham Hilton, marketing director of Hawke Systems, a Digital Systems reseller, welcomed the vendor's plans. 'We have always been positive about anything Digital does on accreditation. We've always said we are a cut above the rest technically. The difficulty has been in proving it in the past, when companies with the same accreditations have had a wide variation in standards.' Digital's proposed certification scheme will bring the company in line with other major vendor training programmes, including Novell CNE, Microsoft MCP, Compaq System Engineers and Sun Competency 2000. Digital is understood to be mulling over whether it will introduce the certification programme into the customer base, in common with CNE and MCP schemes.
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