Cisco Adds Training Modules To SMB University

Cisco Systems Inc. said that it has added a number of quick training modules to its lineup of courses offered at its SMB University, an online education venue for channel partners targeting businesses with less than 250 employees, in response to feedback from its quarterly channel partner survey.

Andrew Sage, Cisco vice president, small business sales, said that the vendor's Global Touch Partner Pulse study, conducted with SMB-focused channel partners, pointed to a need to improve training and lower associated costs.

"We've been getting this feedback from you for the last few quarters pretty consistently," Sage said in an online video post to partners.

He said that partner feedback revealed some complaints about the price of training and the difficulty of locating training nearby training sites.

Sage said that Cisco plans to "bring more hands-on training to local facilities" to make it easier for channel partners to participate.

While not providing any details, Sage said that Cisco will "try to manage pricing" for the training, ostensibly to lower partner costs.

The survey, which Sage said contained responses from "thousands" of the vendor's SMB channel partners, revealed that for many business conditions have improved and profit margins on Cisco's portfolio of products and services are rising.

"Between quick learning modules and a little more investment from our side in hands-on we hope that we make some progress in training," he said.

Details on the quick training modules were not available.

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