Tier overhaul downgrades Citrix partners

Tier overhaul downgrades Citrix partners

AN overhaul of training grades that came into effect this year has left Citrix with only one top-tier partner in New Zealand, while some partners here and in Australia are struggling to meet the new requirements.

The changes will also see the company’s channel reduce by around 20% locally.

In July last year the vendor announced an overhaul of training grades for its three tiers of resellers and had originally slated the changes to be effective from January 1.

The deadline was shifted to February 28 after partners expressed concerns they could not undertake all of the required exams in the set time.

The revamp has resulted in some Citrix partners losing their status, with Gen-i dropping from Platinum to Gold and Maclean Computing from Gold to Silver, leaving Computerland as the only Platinum partner here.

In Australia some partners are also reported to have lost their status, while others were suspended and could not sell product until they completed their certifications.

But Citrix New Zealand country manager Andrew Cashmore says local partners are not experiencing the same troubles as their Australian counterparts.

“Most of the partners have qualified, but others are still in the throes of finalising their certifications,” he says.

Allan Maclean of Maclean Computing says the company had some trouble meeting the deadline, but was mostly delayed by failing exams that are not relevant to local market conditions.

“Some of the questions related to hundreds of servers. This is not relevant to the market conditions in which we operate. It is very frustrating as we have the competency, but were held back by irrelevant exams,” he says.

The company has not had any issues acquiring product due to the loss in status and Maclean is committed to regaining the Gold status with only one more exam to pass.

The requirements Citrix introduced this year include a new Citrix Certified Integration Architect (CCIA) qualification.

Platinum partners are now required to have at least two CCIA engineers and Gold partners one, in addition to several Citrix Certified Enterprise Administrator (CCEA) and two Citrix Certified Administrator (CCA) engineers.

Silver partners now need at least one staff member with a CCEA qualification. All partners also need Citrix Certified Sales Professional (CCSP) staff.

Cashmore expects about 20% of the local channel to fall away as a result of the new requirements, especially at the lower tiers, saying this will allow Citrix to focus on its stronger partners.

“This way we can focus on partners who want to play with us,” he says.

Rob Schroder, Gen-i infrastructure services manager, says the company has completed the required training to confirm Platinum status with Citrix XP.

"We are anticipating formal confirmation of this achievement from Citrix."

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