What does it take to win a Microsoft partner award? An inside look

June 12 2019

Have you ever wondered how to win Microsoft's Partner of the Year Award? If so, Ben Vollmer, Microsoft's Global Dynamics 365 Field Service Director has some tips to help you in your quest.

In a recent article, Vollmer stated that the effort to win a Partner of the Year award should start a year before the submissions are due. While the size of your company doesn't matter, what does matter is how well you tell your story within the confines of the submission criteria.

Vollmer offered some candid suggestions to ensure that submissions are valid, compelling, and believable. A few highlights include:

  • Ensure that everything matches. If a customer is just doing a proof of concept, don't submit that customer as having gone live. "And don't tell us how big the customer will be one day, talk about how big they are and then talk about how they will grow."
  • Don't submit a customer as a success story that is an active escalation. 
  • "Name names," Vollmer stated. It helps with the verification process, among other things.
  • Speak in the past tense for investments. Ensure the data you submit reflects what you've done, not what you plan to do.
  • Microsoft is interested in the customer story, so stay focused on that.

After receiving the submissions, he explained that Microsoft follows a multi-step process. While his article goes into more detail, what follows are some important details.

Step 1: The scrub

Initially, one person reviews all the submissions, checking to see how complete they are and if they're submitted in the right categories.

"It is amazing to me how many submissions aren't complete or a partner is 'spraying and praying' with the same submission in multiple categories," Vollmer stated. "Putting a sales force automation and a field service submission together actually lessens your chances of making it out of this step of the process."

Step 2: The judging

This phase depends on the judges and their individual approaches, according to Vollmer.

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