Cisco is wholeheartedly pushing its partners into the professional services arena with the launch of its "services-as-a-service" programme.
At its partner summit in New Orleans this week, the vendor unveiled Cisco Collaborative Professional Services, a three-pronged initiative aimed at skilling up partners. One facet of the programme will concentrate on Assessment Services, wherein Cisco will help VARs "analyse and collect data around professional services capabilities".
The second track - based around Guidance and Development Services - will look at creating more detailed plans for individual customers. The final element of the programme, which is tagged Practice Accelerator, is targeted at enabling partners to "build or scale their professional service capabilities".
Edison Peres, Cisco's senior vice president of worldwide channels, told partners the Colloborative Services initiative equated to a "services-as-a-service" kitbag for VARs to take advantage of. He claimed that asking partners to "lead with professional services" was one of the cornerstones of his strategy this year.
"I know you want to work with a vendor that minimises competition," he said. "We understand that services is at the core of your value and what differentiates you; it drives your profitability. This is the time to double down and invest in building your professional services practice."
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