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Cisco Channel Chief Tuszik On Networking Cloud, FSO, And How Generative AI Can Help Partners Grow Their Businesses

Gina Narcisi

“When you look at the Cisco Live announcements; if it’s Networking Cloud, the security piece, what we’re doing with Webex or FSO, they all are offers, rather, solutions that we bring into the market that are ready to be delivered in a managed-as-a-service motion,” Cisco Channel leader Oliver Tuszik told CRN.

What has the global partner organization had to do internally to prepare for the shift to the platform approach Cisco is pursuing in security, networking, and full stack observability?

The good thing is, we didn’t need to prepare any of our partners because they were asking -- especially with the provider program that is growing massively with all the managed service activity. So we didn’t really need to prepare our partners, they were requesting and waiting for it. But, of course, we changed our programs [and] how we enable partners. We shifted away from the classical enablement model because some of our provider partners, they might be [on the] leading edge in their segment already, so they need different enablement from our side and a flexible pricing model.

We’re also changing the incentive schemes for ourselves to ensure that they are aligned with the way customers want to buy and consume and how our partners deliver the solutions. Last but not least, the platform is one way to reduce complexity. But there’s complexity in many other ways. We took down the efforts for all the certifications. We reduced the efforts for tracking back-end rebates and we improved our tools and platforms when it comes to how a partner manages their business. PXP [Partner Experience Platform] is no longer new, but it is a platform that every day has a new feature, a new kind of report that makes our partners’ life easier.

Everyone is talking about AI and machine learning -- you will be surprised how much of this intelligence is already in our different systems. You will see more of this in the way we do customer and partner support. So there is a lot under the hood. AI isn’t hype [for us]. We continue our way to ensure that we utilize AI in a responsible way to serve our customers.

 
Gina Narcisi

Gina Narcisi is a senior editor covering the networking and telecom markets for CRN.com. Prior to joining CRN, she covered the networking, unified communications and cloud space for TechTarget. She can be reached at gnarcisi@thechannelcompany.com.

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