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Microsoft 2020 Partner of the Year Deadline Extended

If you thought you blew the deadline for the Microsoft Partner of the Year Awards amid the chaos of applying with banks for Paycheck Protection Program loans, pivoting the business, setting up your workforce and customers for remote work, et cetera...think again.

The original deadline was this week -- April 21, to be exact. But Microsoft earlier this month extended the deadline until May 12.

"In response to COVID-19 and the impact it's having on our global partners, we are extending the nomination submission deadline for all of our awards to 11:59 pm Pacific Time (PT), on Tuesday, May 12, 2020," announced Tracey Pretorius, senior director of Global Partner Business Strategy, in a blog post.

Microsoft partners know the value that winning or being named a finalist for a global Microsoft Partner of the Year award can have. While it's hard to pin a revenue value to an award, partners have told RCP that it's a differentiator that helps command attention from customers, from other ecosystem companies and from within Microsoft.

The coronavirus situation has also prompted Microsoft to introduce a new global award category, announced at the same time as the deadline extension -- the Community Response award. "This new award recognizes a partner organization that has made a great difference, providing innovative and unique services or solutions to help solve problems for our customers and community during these unprecedented times," Pretorius said.

The Community Response award brings to 50 the number of awards categories this year. Those awards broadly fall into the buckets of Azure, business applications, industry verticals, modern workplace and a group of "other" awards. There will also be more than 100 individual winners of country or region Partner of the Year awards.

Traditionally, winners have been announced in June and the partners would be recognized the next month from the main stage at Microsoft's annual Inspire conference, as well as at special events at Inspire for the winners. However, due to COVID-19, Microsoft this year canceled the in-person components of Inspire so any winner gatherings or events will be virtual.

Posted by Scott Bekker on April 23, 2020 at 11:14 AM


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