23/11/2022 ElanWave

What Does It Really Mean to Be a Gold Microsoft Partner?

Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) spans the globe and boasts millions of users. However, not all companies which have built their business around Microsoft technologies have the same status, as only 1% of Microsoft partners in a particular area achieve the Gold status, the highest level of the MPN.

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What are the benefits for independent companies?

Microsoft’s widely-recognized partnership program is alluring to independent companies because they receive various privileges. These range from exclusive access to Microsoft’s toolkits and utilities, all well as involvement in training programs and tutorials.

A Microsoft Gold-Certified partner will receive news, online technical support, updates, and other useful info from the American tech giant. In addition, partner companies get the opportunity to include permission to provide products and Microsoft-based IT services to their own partners.

Moreover, partnership opportunities extend to smart(er) training tools and programs, enhanced and continuous customer support, as well as exclusive access to member resources. Finally, Gold Partners are granted access to a maximum of 100 licenses for Microsoft products, as well as certification logos.


The road to the Gold Microsoft Partner status

The first step in joining this widely-recognized partnership program is to enter the Microsoft Partner Network community (previously known as the Microsoft Partner Program).

Having qualified for membership and having met the requirements set forth by Microsoft, companies start building the competencies required to become a Microsoft Gold Partner. These include but are not limited to:

  • Having four qualified Microsoft Certified Trainers (MCTs). They all need to pass Microsoft certification exams; one of them has to pass the licensing overview assessment and two of them have to pass the sales and marketing assessment.
  • Meeting sales and certification requirements, as well as meeting performance thresholds in various competencies
  • Earning the necessary 120 partner points
  • Submitting at least five customer references
  • Paying the Gold competency fee.

The enrolment process involves signing into a Microsoft account that further links to the network membership, matching the company’s business goals, as well as their qualifications.

Once the certification process is over, the company receives a partner ID, enabling it to contribute to conversations within the Microsoft Partner Network community.

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The alternative is to purchase a subscription to become a Microsoft Action Pack Solution Provider or be a Microsoft Small Business Specialist. Signing up for the Microsoft Action Pack Development and Design subscription also grants access to one of the Microsoft cloud programs.

Retaining membership

Once obtained, Microsoft Gold Certification must be renewed every 90 days every year in order for the company to retain its competency benefits.

The reason behind this is the reputation of Microsoft Gold-Certified partners who are expected to maintain a high level of expertise with Microsoft technologies. Third parties expect a gold partner to possess the best-in-class capabilities when it comes to deploying Microsoft business solutions.


Reasons for working with a Gold Microsoft Partner

Speaking of third parties, the allure of working with a reputable Microsoft partner is always there. However, there are usually hundreds of such enterprises within a particular industry (e.g. data analytics or cybersecurity), so choosing a Gold-Certified partner comes naturally.

  • Namely, such companies exhibit the highest level of trust and competencies when it comes to integrating Microsoft solutions into a particular business. Gold partners might not be part of Microsoft but they share an intimate relationship with the tech giant, granting their own partners advanced support for Microsoft software solutions.
  • Another benefit is the possibility to escalate cases far more quickly than direct consumers, as well as other Microsoft partners, meaning you get lighting speed support on request. 
  • When a company needs to prototype a solution before implementing it, they can count on Microsoft Gold Partner’s exclusive access to a wide range of licenses and tools. These can be used for demos or models of digital solutions that allow businesses to test any idea before implementing it. A digital strategy aided by Microsoft-based solutions helps optimize new product launches.
  • Just as marketers dread every time Google changes its search algorithm, so do businesses find it hard to stay up to date with the latest developments in the IT industry. Partnering up with a Gold Partner means that companies sit at the top of the updates pipeline.

In other words, such companies are updated on what Microsoft’s plans are, giving them a competitive advantage. Working with a Microsoft Gold Partner goes beyond simply receiving the latest updates, as businesses are able to anticipate trends by gaining access to forthcoming Microsoft releases.

  • We have mentioned earlier that trust is one of the main reasons for working with a Gold Partner. Namely, just as Microsoft has entrusted them with a golden certificate, so do third parties trust these Partners that they can deliver expert-level services. From managing Azure cloud services to Office 365, companies don’t have to worry about the level of service they get; not a small thing in today’s world of business.
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Areas of competency

Finally, we will examine which membership competencies are necessary for the golden (as well as the silver) status, as prospective and current partners have to demonstrate expertise in several areas of business and technology.

One of the most popular areas is application and infrastructure, where the following competencies are required: cloud platform, DevOps, app integration, application development, and data centers.

For business applications, being agile with cloud business applications is a must, as well as enterprise resource planning. The data & AI area requires the partner to demonstrate excellent data analytics and data platform expertise.

The modern workplace and security area is also among the most demanding, as Gold Partners must demonstrate everything from cloud productivity, across messaging, all the way to small and midmarket cloud solutions.


There is hardly a company that has based its business around Microsoft solutions that doesn’t want to become the tech behemoth’s Gold Partner. From the latest updates and pre-launches to continuous tech support, even a Gold Partner’s partner gets access to Microsoft’s basket of goodies.


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