Magento, in early February 2013, announced, in an effort to support Enterprise user’s growth and success, plans to introduce company-wide changes, the first of which were to affect the Magento Solutions Partner program. As per the Magento announcement the changes to the partnership program are intended to make a partner company’s status more closely related to its abilities thus making the Magento Commerce Marketplace more utile for prospective clients.
The Program Requirements:
Under the old guidelines partners companies were grouped into three tiers: gold; silver and bronze, and status was mainly determined by the amount of the fee paid by the company. Additionally, each Solution Partner company was required to have a minimum number Magento certified developers on staff and meet a yearly revenue target mainly determined by number of Enterprise licenses sold. Unfortunately, these rankings did nothing to differentiate partners based on abilities or competencies and those searching through the marketplaces were left to fend for themselves in this regard.
The new guidelines feature a change in the tiers used by the system: Gold and Silver levels remain but Bronze has been replaced by a new category, Magento Associate. The new rank is reserved as a nursery of sorts in which companies that wish to become partners but aren’t quite up to partner standards can take advantage of Magento provided resources in an effort to become partner eligible. Under the new guidelines all new Solution Partner Companies start as Magento Associates and must work their way up the ladder by meeting goals that include, in addition to the revenue targets and minimum certified developers, high customer satisfaction ratings and passing site audits performed by Magento ECG teams.
These changes are sure to make finding the right Solution Partner for your needs a far easier task than previously but will they go far enough to differentiate between companies of the same status? Only time will tell.