The WhatsUp Gold Team is proud to announce the launch of our new WhatsUp Gold North American Channel Loyalty Program.  Through the new Partner Portal, powered by Salesforce.com, partners will be able to stay connected with the WhatsUp Gold Sales Team as well as receive access to a wide range of resources and tools they need to do their job as well as increase ROI.  For example, partners will receive unprecedented visibility and management of leads, deal registrations, opportunities, and service renewals, premium technical support, and access to training resources.

The new program will also enable partners to grow their business through innovative new technologies, quality resources, and products, including a comprehensive Partner Portal, product certification programs, and a Fast-Start Partner Enablement.  The deal registration program rewards proactive partners engaged in promotion of WhatsUp Gold products in order to support their efforts for registered deals.  In addition, partners will have access to the “WhatsUp Gold Ninja Partner Online Community” where they will qualify for the “WhatsUp Gold Ninja of the Month” and have the ability to win various rewards and prizes.   

Investment is our partners’ business is very important to the WUG Team, and the new partner program will ensure mutual success as suggested by Caitlin Buxton, Ipswitch Network Management Division’s Director of North American Channel Sales. “Our partners are an extension of our sales force and part of the WhatsUp Gold Team” states Caitlin.  “Not only do we invest in our partners’ business, we don’t compete with them. We want to make sure that all of our sales, services, and support teams are aligned for mutual success and the WhatsUp Gold Channel Loyalty Program will enable this to occur.”

To learn more about the WhatsUp Gold Channel Loyalty Program and read the full press release, click here.

Take a quick read of Google’s Terms of Service or Amazon EC2’s SLA Exclusions and you’ll see examples of how cloud platform vendors limit their governance and control responsibility.

So what happens when you put your business in the cloud and then the cloud goes down?  Just ask Foursquare, Hootsuite, Reddit, Quora and others who endured the recent EC2 outage that hobbled their websites, resulting in lost revenue and strained customer support teams.

Chances are some of your critical business processes have already moved to the cloud.  But you still need to know the instant one of them fails.

So how should you treat vendor platforms such as Salesforce.com, Amazon EC2, Rackspace Cloud Files and Microsoft Azure?

As the saying goes, “don’t rely on a fox to guard the chicken coop”.   Don’t rely solely on your service providers to alert you of inaccuracies or outages that they themselves have caused…. Service provider dashboards will be of no use when they themselves are responsible for failure.  A governed pipe will instantly give you that information.

Our suggestion is to treat cloud platform vendors the same way you would treat any other vendor.  Manage all file and data interactions, with visibility, management and enforcement… And carefully craft SLAs that represent end-to-end services and link them to easily trackable key performance indicators.  Cloud does not solve all your data issues on its own, but you can and should leverage your Managed File Transfer (MFT) solution to extend and govern the cloud.

More than any other question, customers and prospects are asking me: What is the Ipswitch Cloud story? What are you going to do in the Cloud?

The Cloud has been the topic of discussion in many Product Management and Research & Development meetings and strategy sessions here at Ipswitch. While we may not have all the details sorted out, I want to provide you with a my initial thoughts…and I’d like to encourage you to provide feedback.

Ipswitch looks at the Cloud as having multiple personae. That is, to say, it represents various “things” to us.

In one sense, it’s a destination. When I use a Cloud-based service, my destination is the Cloud and there are attributes about this destination that are pre-configurable, predictable, and static, as far as connectivity goes. The notion of a set of Cloud Streams offered by Ipswitch is a real possibility. With over 10 million active users, we could offer pre-configured, governed connections to common Cloud-based SaaS providers like Salesforce.com or Office 365.

In another sense,  the Cloud represents a way to broker information to some other endpoint that may be cloud-based or on-premise. Our Sendable offering is just that. We broker the interactions between people and systems. Brokering includes adding layers of visibility, management, and enforcement. In this case, it’s important to offer multiple ways of connecting and multiple ways of provisioning, from ad-hoc to more formalized adapters and interfaces.

Finally, we look at the Cloud as being half of any domain-to-domain exchange of information, whether it’s people-to-people, system-to-system, application-to-application, or business-to-business. Companies of any size need to seriously consider a hybrid approach to MFT, B2B, and EAI overall.