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Partner Certifications and Specializations

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The Certifications and Specializations are evolving to offer you more opportunities through our Channel Partner Program. Learn More Locked content


At Cisco We Believe In The Power Of Relationships

Create New Markets, Build Expertise, Increase Profits.

The Cisco commitment to our partners' success has been core to our company philosophy since its inception. Cisco has the world's leading networking certification and specialization programs that can enable partners to solve their customers' most important business issues. As you grow your business around architectures, solutions, and services, we increase the reward and profit opportunities.

  • Expand Your Value, Boost Your Revenue
  • Enhance Expertise and Profits
  • Earn Credentials to Increase Market Share

Apply for or renew certifications or specializations through the Certification and Specialization Application (CSApp) tool. (Login Required)

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Partners seek to differentiate in the market through certifications and specializations. Cisco has leading networking certifications and specializations worldwide and has offered them for nearly two decades.

The Channel Partner Program focuses on a partner's ability to deliver intelligent networks and technology architectures built on integrated products, services, and software platforms. The program offers training in the latest Cisco solutions and architectures in addition to valuable branding resources. Our value-based philosophy rewards partners with increased incentives as they add value to their Cisco business.

How do certifications and specializations relate to one another?

Channel Partner Program certifications are similar to academic degrees. Some specializations are prerequisites for becoming certified while others provide specialized knowledge of certain technologies. Certification levels reflect a partner's technology skills breadth. The higher your level of certification, the more credentials and resources you need to meet the requirements. Specialization levels reflect a partner's depth of expertise, capabilities, and end-to-end service and support for specific solutions and technology architectures. Master-level designation is awarded to an exclusive group of Cisco partners who have achieved the highest level of technical competency and demonstrated, through a regular series of Cisco conducted audits, outstanding customer satisfaction in all areas of design, implementation, scalability, and support. These partners are the experts in unified communication, security and managed services. Partners with the Master designation also receive enhanced discounts and incentives.

Benefits to Becoming Certified and Specialized:

  • Market recognition and branding: Cisco partner certification recognizes your technology expertise, specializations, and individual career certifications.
  • Validation and credibility: As one of the world's strongest brands, the Cisco name lends added credibility to companies that achieve Cisco Certified Partner status.
  • Quality standards: An objective third party conducts annual audits that help protect the integrity and value of Silver and Gold Certified Partners and Master Specialized Partners, ensuring the inclusion of only the most qualified partners in our program.

Apply for or renew certifications or specializations with the Certification and Specialization Application (CSApp) tool. (Login Required)

Certification reflects a breadth of skills across certain technologies and is based on your organization's ability to support customers within a single country or country grouping.
Country-level certifications range from entry to highest level: Select, Premier, Silver, Gold, Multinational, and Global Certification.

Select Certification

Identifies partners that focus on selling into the small business market; recognizes and rewards partners who have achieved the Cisco Small and Midsized Business Specialization or Express Security Specialization.

Premier Certification

Identifies and rewards Express Foundation Specialized Partners, Express Collaboration Specialized Partners or partners with any one of the Cisco Architecture Specializations. This certification reflects the partner's increasing technical competency in the integration of basic routing and switching, wireless LANs, collaboration and security technologies.

Silver Certification (retires April 1, 2016)

Recognizes partners with expanded capabilities in areas of solution and architecture selling. Silver Certified Partners have either achieved two Architecture Specializations or one Advanced Specialization and one Architecture Specialization.

Gold Certification

Offers the broadest range of expertise across four high growth market opportunities known as architecture plays-Borderless Networks, Collaboration, Data Center Virtualization, and IP Next-Generation Network. Gold Certified Partners have also integrated the deepest level of Cisco Lifecycle Services expertise into their offerings and demonstrate a measurably high level of customer satisfaction.

Multinational Certification

Recognizes partners with expertise in selling, deploying, and supporting Cisco integrated solutions across multiple countries within a given Cisco geographical region. Partners that achieve the required number of Silver and Gold Certifications within the region will be recognized as Multinational Certified Partners for that region. To qualify, partners must have a multinational resale agreement.

Global Certification

Recognizes partners with the expertise and resources to plan, design, implement, and operate Cisco networking solutions across the globe. Global Certified Partners must have a global resale agreement and satisfy certification requirements across three continental regions.

Specialization reflects a depth of skills in a particular technology. There are three levels of specialization: Express, Advanced, and Master. Each level represents greater capabilities in sales, technical, and lifecycle services.

Express-level specialization is for partners who want to increase their technical proficiency in the area of foundation networking.

Advanced and Architecture-level specializations help partners meet a wide range of customer needs, from small businesses to larger enterprise organizations.

Advanced Technology Specializations can be applied towards Silver Certification. Gold Certification requires three Advanced Architecture Specializations: Borderless Network Architecture (mandatory), Collaboration Architecture, Data Center Architecture and/or Advanced IP NGN Architecture Specializations. Architecture Specializations can also be applied toward Premier Certification or Silver Certification.

Technology Specializations

Architecture Specializations

Master-level specializations are targeted at an exclusive group of partners that have the most in-depth technology skills and demonstrated success in selling, deploying, and providing services for more sophisticated Cisco solutions and fast growth markets. Master Specializations can be achieved regardless of certification level. These partners are the experts in unified communications, security, and data center and cloud technologies.

Additional Specializations

Global Commerce Specialization recognizes partners that have a global presence and proven capability in providing consistent commerce and product logistics services to global customers.

Retired Specializations