It is another exciting day for Smart421 with the news that we have been confirmed as the first UK enterprise to be confirmed on the Amazon Partner Network (APN) as an Advanced Consulting Partner by Amazon Web Services (AWS).
What does it really mean for Smart421 and our Customers?
In some ways, partner ‘labels’ are often seen as just that, labels, and can be given out like confetti. However, for Advanced Consulting Partner status, we had to put up some substantive evidence of various AWS capabilities including Customer references, minimum of $10,000 a month AWS billings, minimum of Business level AWS support (previously called Gold) and at least 10 trained AWS staff.
So before the cynics have a pop either at the program or at us, or both, I can reveal it does require proven AWS capabilities. That will sort the ‘wheat from the chaff’ so to speak :-)
Does it change anything for us? – well yes and no…..
In terms of Operations, we already have a great relationship with AWS (since 2010 as an AWS Solution Provider and since 2012 also as an AWS Direct Connect Solution Provider) with access to a range of valuable contact points, from technical contacts through to Sales and up into Senior Management in the UK and USA. From my perspective as AWS Practice Manager, the existing relationship means regular face-to-face monthly meetings with our technical contacts in AWS, access to the product teams including ‘gurus’ based in Seattle, involvement in beta trials for new features etc. so the APN will just help reinforce those good relationships.
Perhaps the biggest change will be the impact of membership of the APN for our Customers. We are now able to be able to leverage a wealth of AWS resources on our Customers behalf. This translates into concrete deliverables as straightforward as documentation right through to support from technical architects during delivery engagements. It adds up to an improved level of confidence for our Customers that our proven AWS capabilities are fully backed by AWS and its rapidly growing global eco-system.
It means far more than a partner label to us and our Customers….