AWS Public Sector Blog

Announcing the Think Big for Small Business Pilot Program for AWS Public Sector Partners

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Photo by Bethany Legg on Unsplash

According to the World Bank, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) account for about 90 percent of all companies. At Amazon Web Services (AWS), more than half of our partners serving the public sector are fast-growing SMEs and minority-owned businesses (MOBs). To support this important partner community, we’re launching a pilot of the Think Big for Small Business Program in August 2020.

Supporting inclusive economic growth

In this time of COVID-19, we’ve been impressed by the innovative solutions our SME and MOB partners created to support government, education, and nonprofit organizations, especially addressing pandemic impacts and facilitating recovery. Beyond these meaningful contributions, we continue to appreciate their role as key engines for inclusive economic growth. The success of MOBs and SMEs helps country governments to sustain economic growth, while promoting diversity and inclusion and fostering socioeconomic equality.

We want to help our SME and MOB partners continue their great work, but they have told us how the financial shocks of stay-at-home orders across global cities has increased the challenges of allocating resources to maintain tier requirements in the AWS Partner Network (APN). Consequently, partners are unable to access the benefits of the APN that they need the most—namely skills enablement, marketing funding, AWS Promotional Credit, and sales engagement—for business development.

These challenges particularly impact partners in the AWS Solution Provider Program (SPP) that are in the midst of pursuing an AWS Competency. AWS Competency Partners are eligible for a Technical Capability Discount when they join the AWS SPP and this discount allows them to offer the most competitively priced services to customers.

What is Think Big for Small Business?

The Think Big for Small Business Program provides SME and MOB public sector partners in Registered and Select tiers with provisional access to APN Select and Advanced tier benefits through a set of requirements proportional to partner size, essentially giving partners more time and resources to achieve APN requirements.

The program also offers a limited-time Technical Capability Discount to public sector SME and MOB partners in SPP while they work towards a competency. This will help reduce competitive disadvantage and incentivize them to obtain a competency. The Think Big for Small Business Program initially pilots with a subset of existing and new SME and MOB partners that have a public sector practice. These pilot program members are nominated by AWS partner development managers.

An example among our SME partner community is DLZP, a boutique cloud consulting partner with less than 20 employees, based in Houston, Texas. This family business has expanded beyond migration services to develop serverless expertise, especially in the education sector. “As a small women- and minority-owned business, we have limited staff time and resources dedicated to getting AWS certifications or customer satisfaction. The Think Big for Small Business Program came at the right time as it allows us to quickly leverage Advanced Tier benefits, while giving us the time and support we need to obtain the corresponding APN tier requirements,” said Lisa Brunet, managing partner/president, DLZP Group.

We are looking forward to learning from partners like DLZP in the pilot for the Think Big for Small Business Program. With these efforts, we also want to foster the SME and MOB partner community into a group of strong and diverse partners who, beyond their success as businesses, make positive contributions towards a better and more inclusive society.

To learn more about the pilot, speak to your AWS partner development manager or contact us.