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10 Key Takeaways From Microsoft Execs On Cloud, AI And Windows

CRN speaks with a handful of Microsoft executives to discuss the future of Azure, Office 365, Windows 10 and security.

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Microsoft Salespeople Are Bringing In Partners Earlier

When partners are involved in managing services with customers, consumption of those services grows four times faster, according to Gavriella Schuster (pictured), Microsoft's corporate vice president, commercial partner channels and programs. And when solution providers get involved early on with customers, it significantly increases the velocity of consumption, partners have told CRN. But prior to a year ago, when Microsoft shifted to paying salespeople on Azure consumption rather than pre-commitment sales, salespeople didn't always have the incentives to bring partners into sales deals early on. In the past, Microsoft salespeople were only bringing partners in at the proof-of-concept stage, relatively far into the sales process, Schuster said. That has all changed over the past 12 months, and solution providers are now being brought in near the beginning of the sales process. "Now we're bringing [partners] in as soon as we see that it's a sales-qualified lead," she said, which is helping to drive greater consumption.

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