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PACs to Microsoft: Give Us Roadmaps!

Microsoft wrapped up meetings with Partner Advisory Councils last week and heard strong demand for roadmaps, both product-related and Microsoft Partner Network program-related, Microsoft executives said.

Microsoft Corporate Vice President Jon Roskill of the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Group tweeted about the feedback on Wednesday: "We wrapped up the PAC with report outs and while clear we have work to do (roadmaps etc) much progress on Cloud vs. last year."

More than 100 partners from around the world attended the PAC sessions in Redmond during the first half of last week. PACs are small groups of partners representing organizations of all sizes in various categories. There are PACs for cloud partners, Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners, independent software vendors, scale resellers and a number of infrastructure and Dynamics categories.

Senior Microsoft channel executives provided more detail on the feedback they got from PAC attendees on Thursday during a Microsoft Partner Network Interactive Leadership Forum with about 500 online partner attendees.

"One thing we heard loudly from a number of those PACs is the need for more transparency in our roadmap on where we're going, both in terms of product and program," said Ross Brown, vice president of Worldwide Partner Sales.

An immediate area where Microsoft is especially focused on providing a roadmap is in the program area for the ISV partner competency, Brown said.

Both partners and customers have been clamoring for product roadmaps from Microsoft for a long time. It's encouraging that Microsoft is acknowledging the demand from partners, because that could be a first step to a more systematic, global framework for sharing critical product-planning information with the channel. Until then, keep Redmond Channel Partner magazine's regularly updated 2011 Microsoft Product Roadmap bookmarked.

(Ed's Note: For more news from the Microsoft Partner Network Interactive Leadership Forum, click here.)

Posted by Scott Bekker on March 14, 2011 at 11:58 AM