imageWelcome to this issue of the US Partner News Online! Each week, we’ll bring you the latest news and information for Microsoft partners. You can read previous weeks’ issues at http://aka.ms/uspnewsletter. If you’d like to see the next post in your email inbox, go to http://aka.ms/uspblog and enter your email address under “Subscribe and follow” on the right hand side.

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Top stories

SatyaNadella_speakersWPCRegister for WPC 2014 and Hear Satya Nadella’s First Keynote for Partners
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella will keynote WPC 2014 this July to share his vision for our joint success in a mobile first, cloud first world. Satya has long talked about the importance of partners to Microsoft, and we think you’ll enjoy hearing his fresh perspective on our business and direction. Other Vision Keynote speakers include Microsoft Channel Chief, Phil Sorgen, and Chief Operating Officer, Kevin Turner.

imageCloud Partner Profitability – New Revenue Opportunities in the Cloud
Public IT cloud services spending reached $47.4 billion in 2013 and is expected reach nearly $108 billion in 2017, according to a recent IDC study. This same IDC research shows that cloud-oriented partners have 1.5 times higher gross profit percentages and 1.6 times the recurring revenue as a portion of total revenue than other partners.

Extended to June 30: SMB Advantage for Microsoft Dynamics CRM and CRM Online
Earn partner subsidy funds on eligible sales of Microsoft Dynamics CRM and CRM Online through June 30. Redeem the purchase within 15 days, and your customer will receive a check to be used within 90 days for additional purchases or services provided by you. For all other products, SMB Advantage ends on May 31. Terms and conditions.

imageMay 20: Surface Event Live Webcast 
The Surface team has an event coming up in New York City. The webcast will begin at 8:00AM Pacific Time (11:00AM Eastern Time). For specific details on the webcast, visit the Microsoft News Center on Tuesday, May 20.

May 21 Microsoft Azure Webcast: The Microsoft Cloud - Components, Competitors, and Customers
This is the first of four webcasts focused on Microsoft Azure and delivered by David Chappell of Chappell & Associates. You will learn how the technology of Microsoft Azure may impact your solution offerings; how to go to market with your customers; and how the current cloud trends may provide opportunities to transform your business.

imageCloud Content for Every Role – Sales, Marketing, and Technical Resources to Build Your SMB Cloud Practice
Whether you are just starting with the cloud, looking to increase your cloud presence, or have a mature cloud business, we can help you move to the next stage in the evolution of your SMB cloud practice. In our new blog post, you’ll find links to our new Quick Start videos and to our Cloud Solutions webcast series.

Technology Propels Business, and Tech-Savvy SMBs Drive More Revenue Gains
A recent study of small and midsize businesses discovered dramatic differences between those using the cloud and other current technologies, and those that were not. The tech-savvy SMBs grew revenue 15 percentage points faster and grew jobs nearly 2x faster than those who were not using much technology. This new campaign from Ready-to-Go Marketing helps you explain the role that Microsoft products and technologies can play in helping SMBs grow.

Teachers Know Best: What Teachers Want from Digital Instructional Tools
Download this study from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for insights about what teachers say will meet their needs for effective digital instructional tools, and what students say will help them be most successful in their studies.

Commodore64_PCevolutionRedefining the PC – How the Latest Devices Are Changing How Business Is Done
From its infancy as a programmable calculator through the development of the workstations, laptops, tablets and smartphones, personal computing has completely transformed virtually every aspect of the way people across the globe live, work, play, communicate and care for themselves. Most recently, the Windows 8 operating system has revolutionized how the PC can be defined. People are rethinking their concepts of what a PC is and what it can do.

Dynamics Partners: Microsoft Pinpoint Optimization and Review Collection Offer
Interactive Limited is offering a special discounted offer through June 30 for Microsoft Dynamics partners on a proven source of quality leads and will show you how you can effectively rank highly with keywords. This program includes training and forms (offline and online) for collecting reviews and encouraging review posting on Microsoft Pinpoint.

Resources

imageIncreased Partner Incentives for Microsoft Office 365 Sales, April–June
For qualifying sales of Microsoft Office 365 through Open or Advisor from April through June, you may be eligible for an incremental 8% payout through either the Online Services Advisor incentive program or through a one-time Open incentive payment.

Watch On Demand: Office 365 Expert Series – Supporting Top Issues
Overcome hurdles and troubleshoot known issues that you encounter in Office 365 migrations. After watching these on-demand webcasts on the Partner Learning Center,, you will be able to deploy and support Office 365 migration flawlessly and provide a great experience to your end customer.

Microsoft Security Bulletin Update for May 2014
The May 2014 security updates cover Internet Explorer, Microsoft .NET Framework, Microsoft Office, Microsoft Server Software, Microsoft Windows, Productivity Software. You can watch the May 14 webcast on demand, and register for the next webcast, June 11. The next security bulletin release is on Tuesday, June 10.

Microsoft Dynamics GP: Now and NEXT Tour Sessions On Demand
If you were unable to join us for the Now and NEXT tour in person, watch these three recorded web seminars. You will get caught up on important updates, details about where Microsoft Dynamics GP is headed, and key information for planned features in the GP2013 R2 and GP2015 releases.

Microsoft Dynamics Partners: Marketing Offers That Maximize Your Effort and Budget
On the Marketing Offers page on PartnerSource, our vendor PartnerWorks is offering a tailor-made marketing campaign in areas including content marketing, Search Engine Marketing, pay-per-click, email nurture, and social Media strategies.

Training and certification

Twitter_coolgrey11Stay informed about training opportunities that align to your business, role, and Microsoft Partner Network membership. For real-time updates and reminders about upcoming training, follow @mslearningcurve on Twitter.

June Hot Sheet: Plan Ahead for Webcasts, Training, and Partner Calls
The Hot Sheet is a frequently updated schedule of live virtual and in-person training and informational calls that are coming in the next few weeks. Subscribe to the US Partner Learning blog to receive the Hot Sheet as soon as it's published each month.

imageSaturday, May 31: National Certification Day for US Partners
If you’re preparing for a Microsoft Certification exam, set your sights on Saturday, May 31 to take it at a participating New Horizons location. Each participating location has door prizes and may also have other activities for participating IT pros and developers. See our blog post for information on how to participate and locations.

Your Exchange Sales Knowledge Could Enter You to Win a Trip to New York City
Pass the sales assessment or presales technical assessment for Exchange Server 2013 by June 30, and you will be entered to win a trip for two to New York City. No purchase necessary. Open only to authorized representatives of companies actively enrolled in the Microsoft Partner Network who are US residents (including Washington, DC), age 18 years and older. Game ends June 30. Official rules.

Microsoft Dynamics Partners Training Schedule
Take advantage of virtual and in-person opportunities to increase your knowledge of Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and Microsoft Dynamics ERP.

Improve Solution Delivery: Attend a Practice Accelerator
Practice Accelerator provides solutions architects with a detailed framework of resources, spanning from pre-engagement to post-delivery, to help you improve efficiency and deliver solutions faster. Register to attend an upcoming Office 365 or Data Center session.

imageTraining Spotlight: Presales Technical Specialist Accreditation
A Presales Technical Specialist is someone who functions in a technical role at a Microsoft Partner Network organization. This person’s job usually involves explaining the technical functions of a specific Microsoft product or a partner organization’s solution. These specialists support their company’s sales teams with value demonstrations and proof-of-concept development to help close deals. If this sounds like what you do, consider earning the Presales Technical Specialist Accreditation.

imageCalendar through May 30

This list is a sampling of upcoming partner calls, training, and events. Refer to the June Hot Sheet for a comprehensive list for the next several weeks that's frequently updated.

Week of May 19–23

Week of May 26–30

Featured video

In this video, Microsoft US Partner Group Vice President, Jenni Flinders, takes you on a tour of the venues in Washington, DC where the United States team will host our WPC 2014 activities for US partners, including the US keynote, party, and People for Innovation event. Register for WPC 2014.