MSPAlliance, MSP Partners Clash over Accreditation

By Lawrence Walsh  |  Posted 2009-04-24 Print this article Print

A feud, of sorts, is brewing between two of the channel's largest associations of managed service providers-the MSPAlliance and MSP Partners-over which organization is best positioned to deliver training and certification to providers in the burgeoning managed services marketplace.

MSP Partners-an organization founded by Level Platforms, Microsoft, Cisco Systems, Ingram Micro and other vendors-recently announced that it will partner with CompTIA and Everything Channel's Institute for Partner Education and Development (IPED) to create a managed services accreditation program around its existing training and education materials.

"Our new MSP accreditation exam is another vital step in providing solution providers with the tools and business level validations they need to grow and prosper during their business transformation to managed services," says MSP Partners Executive Director Jim Hamilton in a statement. "This new exam will be based both on real world experience and the educational content provided to our members on the MSP Partners site."

MSP Partners' accreditation is similar to a program administered by MSPAlliance for several years. Members of MSPAlliance are upset by the new certification, but it's more than competition. Because MSP Partners is primarily an organization based on and underwritten by vendors, the value of the certification is compromised from the start.

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Lawrence Walsh Lawrence Walsh is editor of Baseline magazine, overseeing print and online editorial content and the strategic direction of the publication. He is also a regular columnist for Ziff Davis Enterprise's Channel Insider. Mr. Walsh is well versed in IT technology and issues, and he is an expert in IT security technologies and policies, managed services, business intelligence software and IT reseller channels. An award-winning journalist, Mr. Walsh has served as editor of CMP Technology's VARBusiness and GovernmentVAR magazines, and TechTarget's Information Security magazine. He has written hundreds of articles, analyses and commentaries on the development of reseller businesses, the IT marketplace and managed services, as well as information security policy, strategy and technology. Prior to his magazine career, Mr. Walsh was a newspaper editor and reporter, having held editorial positions at the Boston Globe, MetroWest Daily News, Brockton Enterprise and Community Newspaper Company.

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