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Microsoft Dynamics Partner Gut Check: Upcoming Certification Changes Realign VAR Ecosystem (Part 2)

by Linda Rosencrance
Contributing Writer, MSDW
September 26 2010

With the upcoming changes to the Microsoft Dynamics Partner organization beginning in October 2010, Microsoft will require its ERP and CRM partners to become more industry focused, more scaled up, and better able to tell the full story of an integrated solution. 

Microsoft Partners' opinions on the new requirements are mixed, and not all based on the organization's size. And a number of opinions are given to only without attribution, reflecting the sensitivity of partners to the coming marketplace changes.

"What Microsoft is doing impacts the small consultancy firms," said one Microsoft partner, who asked not to be identified. "This whole approach of verticalizing partners is going to do away with what we know as Lifestyle partners-the small partners and consultant firms that don't do too many sales but live off the services that those sales generate. The mom and pop consultant firms with only three or four employees."

The partner said given the new competency requirements, it's going to be a lot harder for small consultancy firms to fulfill all the new certification requirements and to go after new business. He said Microsoft realized that smaller partners can only deliver so many sales in a year, so the software giant aggressively started a campaign about two years ago to have partners focus on vertical industries-something that's just not possible for the smaller partners.

"When you don't have a vertical focus, then it will be harder and harder to go after business," he said. "What's going to end up happening is less and less attention is going to be paid to the small partners. Microsoft is forcing the consolidation of the market, that's why you see so many acquisitions going on right now. ...

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About Linda Rosencrance

Linda Rosencrance is a freelance writer/editor in the Boston area. Rosencrance has over 25 years experience as an reporter/investigative reporter, writing for many newspapers in the metropolitan Boston area. Rosencrance has been writing about information technology for the past 16 years.

She has covered a variety of IT subjects, including Microsoft Dynamics, mobile security issues such as data loss prevention, network management, secure mobile app development, privacy, cloud computing, BI, big data, analytics, HR, CRM, ERP, and enterprise IT.

Rosencrance is the author of six true crime books for Kensington Publishing Corp.

Submitted by Luvs_GP on Wed, 09/29/2010 - 17:12 Permalink

It is true, Katalys Group is a lifeline, my lifeline. I am able to continue to keep going as a small consulting firm. If it wasn't for the Katalys Group and the business model they have created, there is no way I would be able to continue in business as an independent consultant working with Dynamics GP. They have put in a great deal of time and engergy into this group, they are literally the answer to my prayers. I knew some day this would happen, even before Microsoft bought Great Plains, I had a deep sense the 'larger' firms would be the only ones standing. I appreciate the fact I have had a wonderful run as a small firm and wish I was in a geographic area which would have afforded my firm to become a 'larger firm' however, that is not the case. I am grateful I am able to assess my options, move my existing clients to Katalys Group and look to the future without the stress the new Microsoft "certification changes" were causing. The decision Microsoft has made to squeeze out the smaller firms is understandable, I am just grateful Gabe and Mark saw this coming a few years back and created Katalys Group to fill a hole being created by the changes Microsoft was putting into place.

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)