Partner Center Technical Corner: March 2023 edition
This blog series is your one-stop shop for information on recent and upcoming Partner Center releases. In each edition, we also include a spotlight on new or future technical improvements that will help you maximize the value you get from Partner Center. This month our focus is on the improved earnings reconciliation experience coming later this year to Partner Center.
Improved earnings reconciliation experience
Today, partners can receive a variety of earnings, such as discounts (i.e., margins and promotions), credits, and incentives across various stages of the customer lifecycle. The different earnings have several independent experiences, requiring partners to reconcile data exports across pricing, billing, and incentives.
We are building a set of new experiences which will enable partners to manage and maximize their earnings through Microsoft. These experiences will be launched over multiple releases with the first iteration debuting later this year. Please note this will be an experience improvement only and will not introduce any policy changes. All downloadable data and related schemas will remain as-is. Partners can expect more information in the next few months through Partner Center announcements and Microsoft Docs.
The new earnings reconciliation experience will provide partners with a comprehensive view of all credits and discounts, ineligibility reasons, revenue, usage, earnings, and payments. Eventually, it will also include opportunities and recommendations based on the revenue or usage footprint partners have with each of their customers across individual Microsoft products. Partners will benefit from:
Enhanced reconciliation efficiency:
We will eliminate the need to download massive statements and files, and instead will provide:
- Pre-tax invoice totals, incentives eligible and ineligible revenue, and earnings by customers for revenue-based engagements.
- Incentives eligible and ineligible usage and earnings by customers for usage-based engagements.
- Earnings organized by customers, resellers, incentive program/engagement, and more.
The combined views will significantly simplify the experience by helping partners reconcile numbers in one place, instead of needing to do it separately across the billing and payouts workspaces.
Improved usability and download performance:
We will introduce a new look and feel with improved page usability and faster downloads. Partners will be able to view all earnings associated with payments received for a particular month, a capability that was previously unavailable.
Additional customer insights:
We will enable partners to make informed decisions by identifying opportunities and risks across their customers to increase earnings and get actionable customer recommendations for proactive customer lifecycle management.
With the first release in 2023, we are starting with the incentive earnings and payments reconciliation experience. Payouts workspace will be replaced with a new “earnings” workspace. If you currently use the Payouts workspace you will auto-inherit access to the earnings workspace without any disruption.
Recently launched in Partner Center
New commerce experience in Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program:
For CSP partners who purchased new commerce subscriptions for their customers in March 2022, the renewal period is approaching. Please be sure to review your renewal options and pricing for the new term. To learn more, see this Partner Center announcement.
To help partners move to new commerce experience, add-on migration is now supported through Partner Center APIs and portal. This capability enables partners to migrate add-ons separately if they need to. Prior to this change, partners could migrate add-ons only if they migrated the base pre-requisite. For more information, see Migrating subscriptions with add-ons.
Partner Center portal now defaults to asynchronous downloads for billed or closed-period new commerce reconciliation files. With this update, partners can save time and work more efficiently by not having to stay on the billing history page during file downloads. Additionally, they can easily search and sort through files they have already downloaded to avoid duplicate downloads. Please read Use your reconciliation files to learn more.
The next SDK release is scheduled for the end of March. There will be one final SDK release planned for May. Microsoft will stop supporting .NET SDK releases starting in June. Partners are encouraged to transition to Rest APIs. To learn more about the changes to SDK, see announcement.
Rewarding partner performance:
To ease the claims process for partners, we launched CPOR (Claiming Partner of Record) Customer Associations on February 1, 2023. This enables partners to submit more than four workloads for a claim and partially approve a claim. The release also allows partners to have a better POE (Proof of Execution). View the FY23 CPOR guide for a guidance on creating customer claims (partner sign-in required).
Partners can now view the Quarter-on-Quarter reporting for Microsoft Azure new growth incentives along with the incentive rate and eligibility criteria. Partners will see their consumption growth between quarters on which their incentives are based. For more information, see the FY23 MS Partner commercial incentives program guide (partner sign-in required).
Securing the channel:
Add a security contact to be notified about Azure fraud. Azure fraud notification emails are currently being sent to admin agents, but if an admin agent is just-in-time (JIT) enabled and the JIT expires, the email will not be delivered. Learn more about handling Azure fraud notifications.
Managed Service Providers (MSPs) enrolled in the Cloud Solution Provider program as Indirect Resellers or Direct Bill partners can now use M365 Lighthouse to set up GDAP (Granular Delegated Admin Permissions) for any customer tenant. This will allow Lighthouse partners to adopt role recommendations specific to their business needs and additional security measures. See a demo here.
The GDAP bulk migration tool now has a new DAP (Delegated Admin Permission) removal feature that allows partners to remove DAP relationships in bulk. The GDAP bulk migration tool will also be able to carry out bulk editing, deletion of access assignments, and deletion of GDAP relationships. For more details, go to GDAP bulk migration tool.
GDAP v1 APIs are now available, providing partners with the least privileged access to their customer tenants. We recommend moving from beta to v1.0 as soon as possible.
Privileged Identity Management (PIM) now supports non-role assignable security groups which does not contain the 500 groups per tenant limit that exists for role assignable security groups. Partners who have a large number of customers can transition at scale to GDAP without hitting any limit with the number of groups used for access partitioning. For more details, go to How will GDAP work with Privileged Identity Management in Azure AD.
For additional security calls to action, see the February 2023 Partner Center announcement.
We integrated ISV Success into Partner Center in January 2023, which enables partners to access ISV Success benefits from within Partner Center. ISV Success, which is currently in public preview, is the pathway for ISVs in the Microsoft Cloud Partner Program to accelerate their journey with building and publishing applications on the Microsoft commercial marketplace. The program offers benefits such as Azure credits, Visual studio subscriptions, publishing and design review consultations, support plans, and more. ISVs can kick off program enrollment in the Membership workspace. Click here to learn more.
In the Account Settings workspace, we have introduced a new Overview page that provides a quick and consolidated view of the user’s profile, their permissions, and quick links to achieve the most common tasks. Users can also now see their learning profile on a new page called “My Learning Profile.”
Insights and Analytics:
Rich customer insights were made available to all partners receiving leads for offers published on the commercial marketplace. Click here to learn more. Downloads hub is a new unified report hub inside the Insights workspace which addresses reporting needs for all supported programs. All reports are organized in one place for partners to customize, download, and make data-driven decisions for their business. View the Partner Center announcement.
Partners can also now create business profiles using a wizard experience to clearly see the sections that are required and their completion status. We have also made significant improvements to page performance; for more information see manage business profiles.
Partner Center technical roadmap
For a centralized view of what is coming next to Partner Center, please review the Partner Center Technical Roadmap.
Partner Center resources
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