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Microsoft Channel Chief Schuster On Shifting The Sales Focus To CSP, Bringing In Partners Earlier And Offering 'Richer' Cloud Compensation Than Competitors

Microsoft channel chief Gavriella Schuster spoke with CRN about how the company is working with partners to accelerate customer adoption of Azure and Office 365.

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What is Microsoft doing to make the entry point into the co-sell motion easier for partners?

The co-sell motion [includes] one Microsoft partner, one Microsoft seller [and] one customer. Which means that [Microsoft] and the partner have to do a really good job of figuring out who are the customers, who do I connect you with, and are they at the same place at the same time to do this together. That entry point can be hard to figure out, but from there, [partners] can really establish a footprint and build on it from there.

We are leaning on [Microsoft AppSource], our marketplace, a lot more. The reason we didn’t last year was because there was still a lot of evolving that AppSource was doing, so we created the OCP catalog for our partner development managers to use. When they were working with a partner on a solution, they put it into this internal catalog for our sellers. Now we are enhancing AppSource so it can take everything that we've been capturing in the catalog. Instead of us having an internal and an external catalog, we are all going to be in the external catalog … All our sellers have that one place to go and everyone is always looking at a single source of truth. If a partner has to update something about their offer, there is one place to do it and it doesn't become out of sync. This gives us a square one -- the entry point for everyone is AppSource.

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