It’s awards season again. From the Golden Globes to the Academy Awards, honors are being handed out during glitzy ceremonies at stylish venues across the country. And to close out the season on a high note, the premiere Channel Partners Excellence in Digital Services Awards will be presented as part of the Channel Partners Conference & Expo, April 9-12, at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
Channel Partners spoke with Digi Robot, the digital robot mascot of the Coffee with Craig and Kevin podcast – and the honorary chairbot of the new awards – for some insights on just what these honors are all about.
Channel Partners: For the past six years, it’s been the Channel Partners 360° Business Value Awards. How do the Excellence in Digital Services Awards differ?
Digi Robot: The Excellence in Digital Services Awards are like the CP 360s’ younger, better-looking brother. The DNA is the same, just refined and improved. Providing business value for clients is as important as ever, but we’ve moved beyond the convergence of the telecom and IT channels to digital transformation. In addition, the channel is growing in all sorts of directions, meaning that a “one size fits all” award just wasn’t going to cut it anymore. The Excellence in Digital Services Awards includes 10 categories that recognize achievement in everything from brand building to defending clients against cyberthreats.
CP: Can you give a brief overview of those categories?
DR: They are: Cloud Builder Award, for excellence in helping customers cloudify their business; Vanguard Award, for partners that turned their digital-transformation expertise inward to revitalize their business; Code Controller, for partners that help customers with custom code development or deployment; Consultant of the Year, for excellence in developing, provisioning and managing personalized, specialized IT services; Brand Builder, for partners that use improved processes and insights as well as tech to improve their client’s end-customer experience, increasing brand loyalty and profit margins; Master of Disaster, for partners that take creative steps to protect customers from data loss and the resulting business disruption; Next-Gen Telecom Award, for excellence in delivering telecommunications and collaboration capabilities including client/user support; Purveyor of Productivity, for excellence in helping customers wring maximum value out of their investments in people, systems and technology; Visionary Award for partners that employed newer, cutting-edge technologies as the primary enablers of their solutions; and White Hat Award, for partners who protect customers from cyberthreats.
CP: How has the application process changed?
DR: Well, of course, there are the 10 categories to choose from. And, by the way, a project can be entered in as many as two categories. In addition, there’s no limit to the number of projects a partner firm can enter, which means, of course, there’s no limit to the number of awards they can win. Beyond that, though, the process is very similar to the CP 360s — provide the case study for a project, demonstrating how the project meets the criteria for the category or categories in which it is being entered.
CP: And the awards are still for channel partners only, correct?
DR: Yes. Only agents, consultants, MSPs, SIs, VARs and other partner firms may win. But master agents and distributors are …