Microsoft today announced a new program geared towards identifying expert Azure service providers. This is an effort to aid companies that want to get the best advice on deploying and managing Azure-based applications.
Despite its rather utilitarian name, the Azure Managed Service Provider (MSP) Expert program could be seen as the Microsoft cloud equivalent of the MVP badge. In other words, it aims to identify which provider has "proven real world proficiency and skills" in data center lift-and-shift, as well as cloud-centric application management and deployment.
The company's feedback regarding cloud migrations and applications has had one common thread: demonstration of real-world experience is what matters most when selecting an MSP. As such, those who earn the Expert badge undergo a continuous assessment process:
Azure Expert MSPs complete a rigorous audit by an independent third party, and also
provide multiple customer references of Azure managed services projects delivered over
the last 12 months. Furthermore, to retain the badge, these expert partners need to
continue to meet pre-requisites annually and complete a progress audit every year. As
Azure evolves, so will the expectations of our Azure Expert MSPs. This framework is built
so that you can trust that the MSPs who’ve earned the badge are continuously working
to remain true Azure experts.
Microsoft plans to celebrate the work of these MSPs at its upcoming Inspire 2018 conference, that's taking place next week. In the meantime, those interested can check out this link to filter and find providers that are suited to their needs.