LAS VEGAS – 2014 will be the last year for McAfee’s SecurityAlliance Partner Program. At its SecurityAlliance Partner Summit here ahead of its Focus 2014 conference later this week, the company announced that beginning in January, it will rebrand its channel program as the Intel Security Partner Program, and with name change will come a variety of other changes.
“Our goal is for it to become your favorite program in the market,” said Lisa Matherly, vice president of worldwide partner programs, marketing, and operations at Intel Security, who presented the changes to partners Monday morning. “I know it won’t happen overnight, but we’ve got to start somewhere.”
Along with the shift in program name when the calendar rolls overs to 2015, the company will also rename the tiers of the program, from Associate, Premier, and Elite to the more-familiar Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The company will also re-jig its competencies inside the program down from five to three, with focus on endpoint security, network security, and security management.
In a bid to make it simpler for partners to qualify, Matherly said the company is doing away with a system that often required partners to do the same baseline training year after year, to a “points based” continuing education program that will allow partners to choose the training elements most relevant to their own businesses. Matherly said the company expects that training shift to reduce the number of hours a partner has to spend on training each year by up to 30 per cent.
“Our intention is to remove the complexity from our certification requirements while continuing to recognize your expertise and the investment you’re making in us,” Matherly said.
Because of the changes to the program, Matherly said McAfee will waive the need for partners to re-certify in 2015, so partners will carry forward their status in the program earned in 2014 through into 2016, although partners who meet requirements for higher levels will be able to “upgrade” their status in the program immediately.
In addition to the competency areas, the program will feature three specialization areas, around Managed Services, Authorized Support, and Service Delivery. These three partner business model-related programs were previously handled as separate partner programs, but will now be represented within the core program.
Matherly said the specializations are intended to “further reward” partners for “investments in your business through new revenue streams,” which tied in nicely to global channel chief Gavin Struthers’ presentation, which focused heavily on the need for partners to focus on, develop, and deliver more services.
Along with the new program, Matherly introduced some new tools and enablement options for partners, including a new cloud-based demo platform that partners can tap into, and a new Partner 360 Dashboard that will be made available to partners starting next month. The Dashboard is designed to present partners with all of their Intel Security-related tools and KPIs in one place, including sales performance, rebate earning, deal registration status, and renewal opportunities.