According to IDC’s 2015 Predictions for Channels and Alliances, Cloud Transformation Workshops (CTW) are back!

I have been on the receiving end of a CTW as a Microsoft ISV Partner and delivered many CTW to Microsoft partners.  Those events date back to the period 2007 – 8.

Why now in 2015?  Is it the case that too many partners are not engaged with cloud and vendors are lagging behind their targets and that could be against revenue and/or ROI on cloud investments such as datacentres and R&D. On the other hand, it is time to push ahead and perhaps this is the last flush for vendors to get partners engaged before they pursue an alternative route to market for their cloud services or find new partners (and many have already started that process).  Of course, it is only a prediction and it could be wrong. We will find out in 2016 when IDC declare their next predictions.

The IDC predictions (all in the public domain) that include a reference to the cloud for the past three years include:


  • Partners Will Use Cloud as a Loss Leader
  • Partners Will Bet Big on Managed Services
  • Cloud Resale Will Evolve into Two Distinct Paths (Refer or Resale)
  • The Best 20% of Partners Will Have Moved to the Cloud


  • Partner Enablement Will Become the New Currency
  • Telcos Will Become the New Jedi Masters
  • Distributors Will Solidify Their Role in Cloud Software
  • Monthly Buying Models and a New Breed of Salesperson Will Become the New Normal for Cloud


  • Every Major Vendor Will Offer a Cloud Transformation Workshop for Partners in 2015
  • Company Valuation Will Become the Key Motivator for Partners to Build Cloud Practices
  • Vendors Will Double Down on Cloud Adoption Incentives

This is a fast developing and ever-changing agenda and it certainly is the case that the cloud has momentum and where before that has been propelled by vendors it now appears that customers are also propelling cloud. There is some evidence this is true and it marks a turning point.

There is no way that every partner is going to be invited to a CTW so I point to some self-help resources below. If you are not invited to your vendor’s CTW, what might that signal?

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Click here if you have your head in the sand or in your hands!