6 Things Partners Need To Know About Juniper's Enhanced Partner Program

Juniper Partner Focus 2018: Cloud

Partners are bullish about Juniper Networks revamped partner program, which shifts channel incentives and specializations toward driving cloud sales. The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based networking vendor is shifting its partner rebate focus from overall sales achievements to rebates based on specializations.

"We've made the incentive plan in our program much richer -- so double-digit-type incentives on data center and security, and up to 3X on our cloud products," said Brian Rosenberg, vice president of global partners and alliances for Juniper.

Juniper's new initiatives and specializations will become available to the channel on Jan. 1, 2018. Here are six things partners need to know about the revamped program.

Cloud Integrator Specialization

Juniper unveiled its new Cloud Integrator specialization, designed for partners to build and enhance their cloud practices and support customer deployments of private and hybrid cloud solutions. The specialization is targeted at existing Juniper partners.

"We're going to go after the Cloud Integrator specialization," said Andrew Fisher, founder and CEO of New York-based solution provider Myriad Supply, a top Juniper partner. "It's really aimed at traditional Juniper partners that are looking to build a cloud practice around clients that are building private and hybrid cloud. … [Juniper] is encouraging and incentivizing us to sell virtual SRX, virtual MX, Contrail and AppFormix."

Cloud First Specialization

Juniper also unveiled a Cloud First specialization aimed at born-in-the cloud solution providers. The vendor is seeking partners who want to expand their expertise in secure cloud infrastructure, along with public cloud deployments and relationships with cloud providers though the new specialization.

"The work we've seen in our Cyphort acquisition and bringing that software-defined secure network message to our partners, we're really excited to put forward this strategy to show we're laser-focused on execution," said Juniper's Rosenberg.

Simplified Core Requirements

Juniper is simplifying core requirements to become a specialized partner in cloud, security, data center and software development. The vendor is lowering the requirement for the number of certified Juniper engineers a solution provider must have in order to achieve a specialization. Juniper also is lowering the threshold for the percentage of services revenues needed to obtain a specialization

"We're making it easier and more cost-efficient to be specialized with Juniper," said Helda Lopes, head of Global Partner Programs and marketing at Juniper.

Cloud Incentives

Juniper is implementing several new incentives to drive faster cloud growth and more profitability for partners. Juniper's new cloud back-end rebates are three times the dollar amount compared with security and data center specialization rebates, said Lopes.

"We're putting a large incentive around cloud to help our partners grow faster. One is new MDF so we can go out and develop opportunities together," she said. Juniper also will create tailored marketing programs in 2018 designed for rapid business growth.

New Training

Juniper is creating training courses for the new cloud specializations. The vendor will start with online courses around technical and sales training. Then in 2018, Juniper will host in-person training during road shows to give partners hands-on cloud enablement skills. "The new certification tracks to go along with these new specializations are really exciting for us because one of our core values is constant improvement and education," said Myriad Supply's Fisher.

Global Partner Recruitment

Juniper is actively seeking new security-focused and born-in-the-cloud partners through the launch of its revamped channel program.

"We're making big Opex investments to have dedicated staff in our different geographies focused exclusively on the recruitment, on-boarding and enablement of partners specifically on cloud and security. That's on a global basis," said Juniper's Rosenberg. "The benefit of our software-defined secure network strategy is the ability for partners to break out of just selling the firewall or the software, but to really be able to take a holistic view on how to secure that enterprise. We think that story will attract some partners who in the past made other choices."