The Rise of the Ecosystem Mindset – 4 Strategies to Be Successful

The development of a new “ecosystem mindset” is a result of ecosystems growing and restructuring. This crucial route to market requires a shift from technology push to a strategy dialogue, sharing information and building joint value propositions that bring the strengths of both organizations to the end customer, regardless of partner size. With a growing number of companies working together, the IT market is becoming increasingly interconnected. McKinsey calls this “Ecosystem 2.0” because it predicts that technology companies will be more collaborative and work together.
Coterie Marketing and University of Huddersfield conducted research that found that the ecosystem was experiencing a greater restructuring in 2020. The traditional tiers and levels of the ecosystem were confusing. Partner marketers needed to monitor and respond to both end-user and partner needs.
Jay McBain, Forrester’s 2021 channel marketing predictions author, introduces the concept of the ecosystem mindset. He talks about the Rise of the Ecosystem Orchestrator and how much of the focus is on the technology, programmatic and process elements of ecosystems. He also asks: What about the people? What is the ecosystem mindset?
My role is unique in that I oversee both technology partners who come into our business and channel partners who resell our products. I have a complete 360-degree view on the partner world, from activating inbound partners to reselling our services to channel partners. I am the partner and outbound, i.e. I am working with our partner. This 360-degree view requires an ecosystem mentality, which I have been advocating for some time. I see an increase in the need for partner marketing as a result of digitization and cloud. No one tech company can do everything; no one partner can create the entire technology stack. Partner marketing is an important way to market businesses. It requires a new approach.
These are my four ways to adopt this new mindset.
Ideas to Share
To help the market respond, bring new ideas and innovations to your partners. Partner portfolios are becoming more complex because of the growing ecosystem and move to Anything-as-a-Service (XaaS). It is crucial to begin with a strategic dialog that includes sharing information and building joint business plans. It is not possible for any business to operate in isolation. It is about adjacency – “we’re better together.” We all respond to common trends, such as the workforce pivot during the pandemic. To help their partners adapt to the changing market, vendors need to bring new ideas and concepts.
Be Different
To create a campaign that is easy to build and execute, take a different approach when creating a joint value proposition. Once you have a joint plan that includes the target market, it is time to create a compelling joint value proposition. This should include the customer’s pain points and what each partner brings. These are not transactional relationships in which the vendor takes the partner’s value proposition. It must be distinctive and stand out from the crowd.
Coach, don’t sell
Coaching sales teams to handle objections will help you empower them. A healthy channel ecosystem can only be built if you listen and coach your partners. Technology vendors may often try to run sales campaigns through their partners by promoting their ‘products’. These are not small tasks for the partner. They often don’t get all the sales collateral and training they need to properly educate their sales team. Or they are directed to a portal where they can add their logo, customize, push go. This is the old technology push mindset. An ecosystem mindset involves investing time and resources to understand your end customers. To support them in this new approach with their time and resources.
Be succinct and specific
Support partners in major bids and account-based advertising. It is now about bringing the strengths of both organizations to the customer, regardless of how large the partner may be. This is important because I have found that small partner organizations are more agile than large ones. Therefore, their size should not diminish their value to vendors. It is important to be specific and direct in your assistance to partners.
Rob Reynolds is the Global Partner Marketing Lead at Verizon. The views and opinions expressed in the content are solely the responsibility of the author.
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The President’s Cybersecurity Executive Order Is Good News, but a missed opportunity

The federal government can learn a lot from the private sector. The President’s Cybersecurity Executive Order provides opportunities for just that. President Joseph R. Biden issued an Executive Order on Improving Cybersecurity Nationwide on May 12. It outlines many requirements for federal agencies, as well as organizations that do business with the federal government. CompTIA released a statement supporting this Executive Order on May 13th. Although there are many positive aspects to this Executive Order, there are also some concerns.
It is important to remember that there was an opportunity to call upon private industry to comply with many, if any, of the requirements placed on federal agencies. It is clear that neither government nor private industry can successfully combat the cybersecurity threats they face. Only by improving the way government and private industry work together, we can gain momentum from the bad actors to further secure our connected network.
We need to share information early and often
I am most pleased with the call for increased and improved information sharing between agencies. Cyber threat intelligence must be shared to enable organizations to deploy, configure, and monitor their environments for signs or attack. The public-private partnership is more important than ever. I hope that the demand for better information sharing within the federal government will naturally spillover to improve existing public-private partnership, mainly managed by the Cybersecurity and Infra Security Agency (CISA).
Some of the mandatory reporting requirements can be problematic, mainly on service providers to federal government. I support the requirement because it encourages, or in this instance requires, notification of cybersecurity events that could indicate successful attacks. Public and private organizations keep information about known or possible attacks close to their chests. This is because they fear that an organization will be “cybershamed” if it self-reports without a full post-mortem. It is more important than ever to let the organization know if there is any concern. Even if it is not confirmed. If we want to move from reactive defense to effective offense, we must share as much information as we can as soon as possible.
A Call for more Cyber Investments and Training
The Executive Order also calls to increase the reporting to Congress. Although I applaud the goal, I am concerned that the increased reports will only increase the already large amount of information that is being sent to Congress, which has not resulted in meaningful improvements. I will support this reporting as long as it leads to positive change. However, I am concerned that it will only create more noise than the necessary action that industry experts agree on.
It is clear that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and CISA, need to be funded more. We must make the necessary investments to secure our collective infrastructure. Some are concerned that DHS will be able to recruit all cybersecurity talent, which could lead to a worsening of the growing gap in skilled workers available for hiring across public and private sectors. While it is possible that this concern will come to pass, it is still a reason why CompTIA’s workforce training programs and workforce are crucial in closing the huge skill gap.
Seven areas where we can all improve
The Executive Order identifies seven areas that need improvement. As I have said, I am pleased to see that the number one priority is to remove barriers to sharing threat information between government and private sector. This critical threat information must be shared in order to allow the government and private sectors to work together effectively to defeat the bad actors. This is something that has universal support. CompTIA ISAO and CompTIA strongly support it and are ready to help make it happen.
IT service providers to government must also share breach information. I agree that this information sharing is necessary to improve the effectiveness of our network defenses. It will be interesting for service providers to comment on how the implementation goes and what, or if, they do.
The federal government should also be implementing stronger cybersecurity standards. This is a sensible decision and the work done here will also be applicable to private industry. Multi-factor authentication, zero-trust, encryption,

The power of community: Get involved with local, business and vendor groups to help your company

A place where you feel welcome and valued is a key part of any business’s success. Participating in three types of organizations will increase the value of your MSP: local, vendor and business communities. A place where you feel welcome and can contribute is a key part of any business’s success.
Desraie Thomas, channel director at Datto talks about the importance and value of community.
She said that, for example, participating in local Facebook groups and posting can increase brand awareness.
“We have been involved in swap meets, where 150 people dropped off donations, 175 people picked up donations, and truckloads go to local shelters. It has sparked conversation. “Does anyone need tech services?” Thomas asked, “Is there anyone who can help me?”
Learn more by watching the video.
Join the Conversation! CompTIA’s communities allow you to network with industry leaders and peers!

The Perks Of Living in a UK Tech Town – Even if you’re not an IT Pro

Living in a UK tech town does not require you to be an IT professional. CompTIA’s UK Business Technology Community has two members who share their experiences in how they have made it in the tech sector in top UK Tech Cities Manchester and Birmingham. As with many other industries, it’s clear that technology jobs have changed in the past year. Many employees now work remotely. However, if anyone can do a tech job from anywhere, does it still matter where they live? CompTIA’s UK Business Technology Community members who reside in two cities that ranked near the top of the 2nd Annual UK Tech Town Index say it does. Mike Brooman, Vanti CEO, lives in Birmingham, which is the No. Robert Gibbons, CARA Technology’s business development manager, is a resident of Manchester, Tech Town number 2. Kelly Stone, senior director for global social media at CompTIA joined them to discuss why they love living and how it has benefited their careers in technology. Brooman and Gibbons also discuss how being located in a Tech Town isn’t just about career opportunities in technology–businesses can benefit too. Listen to their advice about tech recruitment and retention, and whether or not it is worth considering moving to a Tech Town for a career in IT. CompTIA’s 2nd Annual UK Tech Town Index examines employment opportunities, livability factors, and opportunity costs to rank the top 10 places for IT professionals to live and work in 2020. The factors included the number of IT job postings locally, projected job growth, and the reported cost of living within travel to work areas (TTWAs), were all evaluated. To see the top 10 UK Tech Towns, download the report.

The More Things Change, the More They Stay the same: 2021 Help Desk Trends

CompTIA’s latest research shows that help desk support is becoming more important than ever as innovation pressures take focus from core technical support functions. According to Volley podcast hosts Seth Robinson (senior director, technical analysis) and Carolyn April (senior director, industry analysis), organizations are trying to stay relevant and keep up with the latest technology solutions. The need for help desk support is more important than ever. Robinson and April discussed the latest trends in the IT help desk. They also explained why, despite all the innovation, businesses should remain focused on their core technical support functions. Here’s what they had.
Technology is now a core competency
Technology has not always been an integral part of most businesses’ business operations. Operational shifts are forcing more businesses to rethink their approach and embrace technology. Recent research suggests that 40% of businesses intend to make IT their core competency. This suggests that a more strategic approach is being replaced by the tactical.
Robinson on Volley stated that there is a shift towards strategic IT. “In the past companies were concerned primarily about tactical IT. But the shift away is highlighting the importance of quality support. This brings us back to the help desk.
Companies have had to reevaluate their approach to managing their help desk. Nearly half (49%) of businesses keep their help desk internal. 46% use a mix of external and internal resources. Only 5% of businesses use help desk services exclusively from third parties. Regardless of whether a company qualifies as an SMB, or whether technology doesn’t inform as much about their business model and business model, there is still a growing reluctance not to give up all technical operations.
It’s becoming clear that a revitalized helpdesk function is needed, with so much of it being housed. “More businesses believe that technology is the focus of business and… I think that the help desk is right in that crosshairs. Robinson stated that technology should be something that makes the workforce productive. The help desk must function at a very high standard.
The Evolution of the Help Desk
The help desk will need adapt to meet the changing needs of technology as it becomes a central focus. The help desk was traditionally associated with password resets or impaired laptops. However, modern business challenges such as remote working and emerging technologies are driving us to increase the number of help desk employees.
CompTIA research has shown that many companies are more open to outsourcing routine tasks like password resets and basic user issues. “There is a mix of things going on with the help desk where…many businesses are willing to outsource these duties.” April stated that if these operations are outsourced, it does allow the internal help desk to rise to higher-level, more sophisticated services.
Skill Sets Required for a Proficient Help Desk
The help desk must be able to adapt to the changing requirements of modern business. This evolution has had a major impact on the customer experience. It is important to provide a positive customer experience in resolving user problems and helping employees. Customer experience, which is a function that is primarily employee-facing, is rapidly becoming a key characteristic of a great help desk. It will distinguish the elite from the rest.
Robinson stated that customers are increasingly demanding a better customer experience. Robinson stated that companies cannot have employees getting stuck, or doing workarounds. There is a lot of expectation about how technical problems are resolved these days and that will require some investment. Technology moving smoothly isn’t cheap.” In fact, 65% companies rated customer satisfaction the primary metric to evaluate the effectiveness of their help desk.
Help desk employees are expected to perform more complex and advanced tasks. To keep up with changing industry requirements and evolving job responsibilities, the CompTIA A+ certification is updated every three years. The help desk is becoming more flexible as more routine tasks are automated or self-service. This allows for more complex tasks to be handled. CompTIA research shows that this includes an increase in the need for cybersecurity, remote support, network security, mobile device issues, and other advanced skills.
Robinson stated, “When we automate these tasks, we aren’t taking away the helpdesk technician, but we’re asking them to do greater things.”
Learn how IT skills can adapt to meet today’s demands.

The New Security+ Certification Exam: What You Need to Know

Cyberattacks have reached epidemic proportions.
The number of malware infections per month now exceeds 20,000,000. Data breaches have exposed more than 11.5 billion records since 2005.
Four out of five organizations suffered at least one successful cyberattack in 2019. More than one third of all organizations were the victims of six or more successful cyberattacks.
A ransomware attack on a business is expected to occur once every 11 seconds by 2021.
Cybercrime will result in $6 trillion in global economic losses by 2021. This is an increase of 100 per cent in six years and the largest transfer of economic wealth in human history.
To make matters worse, 85 percent are facing a shortage of security professionals. The demand for information security professionals certified has never been greater.
Certified professionals can fight cybercrime
To verify cybersecurity competency, the Computing Technology Industry Association Security+ certification is used by the overwhelming majority of businesses when filling cybersecurity positions. Security+ is the most highly regarded security certification out of all the available security certifications.
Security+ certification is the foundation for today’s IT security professionals. It is internationally recognized for validating foundational-level security knowledge and skills.
A CompTIA security certification can be a significant asset for IT professionals. An average CompTIA security certification holder earns a higher salary than those with similar qualifications, but without a certification.
Security+ Certification Exam Changes
The new CompTIA Security+ certification exam, SY0-601, is due to be released in mid November 2020. This exam is significantly different from the SY0-501 exam.
The SY0-501 Security+ exam released in 2017 focused on cybersecurity. Organizations monitored network traffic and reacted to attacks. However, cybersecurity today is proactive and not reactive. The emphasis is on finding evidence of an infiltration into a company before the cyberattack actually begins.
Many instances now allow for the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to predict an attack. These changes are reflected in the new Security+ SY0-601 certificate, which prepares learners to take on these new job roles.
Security+: The Most Recent Edition
In November 2020, the new Security+ Guide to Network Security Fundamentals 7e will be available to instructors. It will include the updated CompTIA SY0-601 exam and map to the new exam’s objectives.

IT, Networking, and Cyber Security Instructors – Take a deep dive into the Live Virtual Machine Labs at MindTap. Watch the recording of our recent webinar: Just In Time Training for Live Virtual Machine Labs.

Cisco’s New Next Level Certifications: An Overview

This post is shared: Cisco announced their Next Level IT certifications this week at the Cisco Live event. Ronnie Wong, a resident Cisco and networking educator, will guide you through the new certifications, what you should study, and what it means for you.

The New Kids on the Block
New Cisco certification paths are bringing new players to the scene: DevNet Associate and Professional, as well as the new CCNA.
Ronnie Wong guides you through the new Cisco certification paths in this video.

Current exams will be retired on February 23, 2020. New exams will be active on February 24, 2020.
This is the new Cisco certification path
Current path retiring Feb 23, 2020:
Associate:CCDACCNA CloudCCNA Cyber OpsCCNA Data CenterCCNA IndustrialCCNA Route & SwitchingCCNA SecurityCCNA Service ProviderCCNA Wi-Fi
Professional:CCDPCCNP CloudCCNP CollaborationCCNP Data CenterCCNP Routing & SwitchingCCNP SecurityCCNP Service ProviderCCNP Wireless
Expert:CCDECCIE CollaborationCCIE Routing & SwitchingCCIE SecurityCCIE Services ProviderCCIE Wireless
New path to launch on February 24, 2020
Associate:DevNet Associate (New!) )CCNA
Professional:DevNet Professional (New!) )CCNP EnterpriseCCNP CollaborationCCNP Data CenterCCNP SecurityCCNP Service Provider
Expert:CCDE (New! )CCIE Enterprise InfrastructureCCIE Enterprise WirelessCCIE CollaborationCCIE Data CenterCCIE SecurityCCIE Service Provider
What to do if your goal is to take the CCENT or CCNA exam right now?
Some of you who are studying for the CCENT and CCNA may not be clear on what to do after Cisco announced their new certification paths. This QuickByte is a guide by Ronnie Wong, an edutainer.

ITProTV offers a free way to learn for your Cisco exams if you are currently studying for your CCNA/CCENT exam and want to certify before they expire.
Where can I find the new Cisco exam objectives?

What’s the CCNP doing?
How do I become a Cisco Certified Specialist

Check out our comprehensive guide to IT certifications for more information about renewing and earning certifications.

The New Microsoft Azure Role-Based Certification Paths

Share this post: In October, the ITProTV crew attended Microsoft Ignite, where Microsoft presented future initiatives, cool features, and, most importantly, new Azure certification paths. If you are a Microsoft certified professional and feel like you are starting to sweat after reading the last sentence of this post, don’t worry. Here’s what’s new.

Why are Microsoft certifications changing?In short, Microsoft wants to bridge the IT skills gap by better aligning certification training with real on-the-job skills requirements. The new certification paths are role-based. This means that the certification you receive will reflect the job role for which you were hired. This certification path change is only for Microsoft Azure specializations. Your previous certifications are still valid until their expiration dates.
What is changing? Let’s say you have passed the 70-533 exam — Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions. This doesn’t tell much about your role in IT. It outlines the subject matter you will be learning about, which is Azure Infrastructure. The new certification program prepares you for the exact job in Azure infrastructure that you would like to be Microsoft Certified Azure Developer Associate, Administrator Associate, and so forth.
The Six New Job Role Based Certifications The 100-level administrator is the developer level, 200-level developer is the architect level, and 400-level DevOps is the DevOps level.
These are the six roles that Microsoft Certified Azure requires:
Associate Administrator
Developer Associate
Solutions Architect Expert
DevOps Engineer Expert (coming soon)
Microsoft 365 Modern Desktop Administrator (coming soon).
Enterprise Administrator (coming soon)
The new certification exams are:
AZ – 100 : Microsoft Azure Infrastructure and Deployment
AZ 101: Microsoft Azure Integration and Security
AZ – 102: Microsoft Azure Administrator Certification Transition
AZ – 200 : Microsoft Azure Developer Core Solutions
AZ -201: Microsoft Azure Developer Advanced Solutions
AZ – 202: Microsoft Azure Developer Certification Transition
AZ – 300: Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies
AZ – 301: Microsoft Azure Architect Design
AZ – 302 – Transition to Microsoft Azure Solutions Architect Certification
AZ – 400: Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions
Transition Exams These exams are intended for professionals who have passed the 70-532 or 533 exams and want to transition to the new role-based Azure certifications. The transitional exams cover only what’s new, and are not covered by the 70XXX exams. It is important to keep in mind the dates. Exams 532-533 and 535 expire December 31, 2018, respectively. The transitional exams will still be available until June 30, 2019. If you want to transfer your certification without having to start over, you will need to take a transitional test before June 30th. Here’s the breakdown:
After passing 70-532, you will be able to earn your Microsoft Certified: Azure Developer Associate certificate by passing AZ-2: Microsoft Azure Developer Certification Transition.
After passing 70-533, you will be able to earn your Microsoft Certified Azure Administrator Associate certification by passing AZ-102: Microsoft Azure Administrator Certification Transition.
After passing 70-535, you will be able to earn your Microsoft Certified: Azure Solution Architect Expert certification by passing AZ-302 – Microsoft Azure Solutions Architect Certification Transition.
What if I don’t have a Microsoft Azure certification? Simply choose the role-based path that you want to follow and then start studying for your certification exam. Although the content may be new, the process of signing up for and taking a Microsoft certification exam is the same.
The three last Azure certifications, DevOps Engineer and Microsoft 365 Modern Desktop Administrator, will be released before the end 2018. Microsoft forums confirm that there will be more role-based certifications in 2019, aside from Azure. You can proudly display your skills if you are awarded one of these new certifications.
ITProTV’s social media channels will have more information about Microsoft certifications. You can also refer to Microsoft’s blogs for additional information. Techn is a podcast that explains what Mike and Cherokee learned at Ignite.

The New CCNP Routing & Switching is Here

“Out with the old CCNP Routing & Switching, in with new” was probably the Cisco of 2015’s thought. They decided to update this coveted certification in January 2015. This decision was made earlier than expected and announced last summer. The certification was updated fully on January 29, 2015. The current Cisco CCNP Routing and switching certification exams (642-902 ROUTE and 642-813 SWITCH) will be retired on January 29, 2015. You can register only for the CCNP Routing and switching v2.0 certification exams beginning January 30, 2015. Candidates have been able mix and match the old and new versions of the three exams for the past six months (and still have three weeks to complete it).
What’s the new CCNP Routing and Switching v2.0 like?
The new CCNP Routing and Switching targets candidates with more current topics and forward-looking strategies. It pays particular attention to IPv6’s impact on workforce mobility and the proliferation Internet-connected devices. The updated exams include network scale support and accommodating IoT’s continued growth (see below).
The updated CCNP R&S exam validates your ability to plan, implement and verify complex network solutions. The new CCNP Routing & Switching exams are:
Implementing Cisco IP Routing (300-101)
Implementing Cisco IP Switched Networks (305-115)
Troubleshooting and maintaining Cisco IP Networks (300-135)
Cisco is increasing the level of CCNP Routing & Switching credential. This will bring it closer to the expert level as well as other CCNP certifications. CCNP R&S updates were long overdue. CCNP Routing and Switching now has the same level as other CCNP-level credentials like Data Center Security and Voice.
The new CCNP Routing and Switching 2.0 curriculum focuses on IPv6, including dual-stack IPv4 and IPv6 networks. Cisco believes that the IPv6 market will continue to grow, and Cisco needs to match it accordingly. There is also a growing emphasis on the Internet of things (IoT), which includes manufacturing sensors, household gadgets and other devices that need network connectivity.
Cisco’s new version of CCNP Routing and Switching requires that candidates are proficient in StackWise and Virtual Switching Service technologies. Both are used to make multiple physical switch behave like one switch. However, there are many design considerations and implementation details that can impact their behavior in production networks.
DMVPN (Dynamic Multipoint Virtual Private Network) is another thing to remember when looking at the new version CCNP Routing & Switching certification. This technology overlays secure tunnels across public and leased networks. It has been added to the CCNP Track Routing & Switching.
If you are considering adding the CCNP Routing & Switching credential as part of your professional profile, then you should focus on Version 2.0. for all (ROUTE SWITCH, TSHOOT). exams. You can find the blueprints here. You might also want to visit our IT certification community to see if any of your fellow Cisco professionals have taken these exams. Good luck!

The Names of the World’s Best Institutes of Cisco CCNP have been Out-IT

Cisco Certified Network Professional Course, also known as CCNP Course, is a certification that Cisco offers to professionals in the field of Information Technology. It provides them with the knowledge, skills, and tools necessary to understand and implement networking, routing, and switching. This certification covers both the updating and solving of problems related to these technologies. There are many private institutes that offer CCNP training around the globe, some of which are approved by Cisco.
There are two types of institutes in the United States of America:
Fast Lane Consulting and Education Services
Global Knowledge
Micronics, Inc.

United States of Asia Pacific (APAC), Institutes:
Fast Lane APAC
Global Knowledge
IT Learning Solution
Nirmal Datacomm
Training Partners (TP).

Japan Institutes:
Global Knowledge Network Japan Ltd
Net One Systems
Top Out Human Capital

European Institutes:
ALEF NULA (Slovakia Czech and Hungary)
Fast Lane Institute for Knowledge Transfer GmbH
Fast Lane Institute for Knowledge Transfer Slovenia/ CEE
Global Knowledge
NIL Data Communications Ltd
PRES Srl – Italy

The CCNP Course is an internationally recognized certification that promises bright futures for its qualified candidates, specifically in Dubai. Below are some of its benefits:
This certification certifies professionals who can be used by many organizations and enterprises to act as system administrators.
The certification covers issues related to networking such as the provision of network solutions. The certification allows its holders to offer solutions and security to an organization’s network. Network security is a key aspect. The CCNP course covers all aspects of it for its learners.
The certification is linked to the networking, so it provides all information about LAN andWAN, including the design and implementation of these networks.