Cisco has relaunched two of its specialist accreditations in a shake-up of its Value Incentive Partner (VIP) channel scheme.
IP Communications and IP Communications Express qualifications will replace the IP Telephony Revised specialisation and three programmes that covered the firm's IP telephony offerings.
There will also be changes to security accreditations. Channel sources say the firm is tying voice and security closer together.
Paul Salmon, Cisco's EMEA director of technical operations, claimed the new certifications and other changes to the VIP programme aim to simplify accreditation and make it cheaper to maintain a specialisation.
"IP Communications Express is typically aimed at installations of fewer than 100 seats," Salmon said. "It's aimed at firms selling into SMEs and into the branch office end of the market. The IP Communications specialisation will be more suited to those selling into enterprises."
The firm has also removed the requirement for technical staff to resit exams for some of the specialist accreditations each year.
"This can only strengthen our relationship with Cisco," said Chris Jenkins, product and marketing director at Cisco reseller Cisilion.
"For those people that already have the expertise, the new programmes will make it much easier to retain their accreditations. These are very complex products, and Cisco cannot afford to do this with people who do not have the expertise."
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