If you are an ISV out there building on our greatest and latest platform and technologies, wouldn’t it be very nice to know an insider at Microsoft who can be your buddy – to answer any questions you might have, to help you get access to the right information, to help you work through any blocking or stumbling issues or plainly just to make a good friend within Microsoft?
I personally would love to build a relationship with somebody inside a company that I am taking a bet on – for my job, my career and even for my interesting hobbies that I deeply care about.
A few weeks ago, we launched a program just for that purpose to support all the ISVs. Companies ranging from having a handful of employees to those with hundreds of employees building software can now get a Microsoft ‘insider’. We call this program the The ISV Buddy Program. This program enables an ISV employee to connect and build a 1-on-1 relationship with a Microsoft employee and, through that relationship, get answers to development questions and pointers to resources.
The program is free for the ISV. ISVs won’t have to pay anything for this program. As of July 1st, 800 Microsoft employees had signed up to be an ‘ISV Buddy’ and most of these have been matched up with ISVs. The last time I checked, we had over a 1000 ISVs enjoying the benefits of the program and making a direct connection with Microsoft.
This program also gives an opportunity for Microsoft employees to build a connection with our customers – understand what our customers care about, what they want from us, what they like, what they don’t like, etc. that will ultimately help us better understand our customers and in turn help us build and deliver better products and more importantly the right products for our customers.
If you know an ISV actively developing and selling a software product or solution on a Microsoft platform, you can get them into this program. To enroll an ISV, follow the directions on this simple form. If a match is found, a Microsoft ‘buddy’ will contact the ISV within two weeks.
More information about the program is on http://www.msdn.microsoft.com/isv/isvbuddy/default.aspx or by sending mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.