Moving applications to the cloud is a major, and sometimes difficult decision for the majority of companies to make – surrendering the control and security of an in-house data center in pursuit of enhanced scalability and business agility afforded by the cloud. And although confidence in the public cloud is undoubtedly on the rise as the market and platforms mature, many still have their concerns; whether they are centered around vendor lock-in, security, availability, or any number of other factors.
In order to quash those fears many turn to third-party application services, as opposed to leveraging the basic native services offered by the cloud vendors themselves. But therein lies a significant problem for buyers; selecting and agreeing upon the best suited solution from the hordes of ISV’s (F5 inclusive) who are all vying for business…
So how does one choose?
Wouldn’t it be great if someone were to simplify this consideration phase of the buyers journey by identifying ADC providers who have previously demonstrated technical proficiency, integration, and expertise in the cloud? Surely that would remove some of the less reputable vendors from the shortlist, while also instilling confidence in all stakeholders involved in the procurement process?
Fortunately, Microsoft’s Cloud Platform Competency program does exactly that for those looking to employ these services on Microsoft Azure, by recognizing the successes of a select handful of stand-out vendors.
And as the title above states, I’m pleased to announce that F5 recently acquired this prized accolade by accomplishing the necessary requirements to achieve Gold status in the program. Gavriella Schuster, Corporate Vice President for the Worldwide Partner Group at Microsoft Corp had the following to say on the matter:
“By achieving a Gold competency, partners have demonstrated the highest, most consistent capability and commitment to the latest Microsoft technology. These partners have a deep expertise that puts them in the top of our partner ecosystem, and their proficiency will help customers drive innovative solutions.”
Amongst numerous other criteria required to obtain this competency, F5 was required to provide Microsoft with a number of references and success stories from completed customer projects. This verifies that the BIG-IP Virtual Edition (VE) has performed optimally in Azure environments, while also showcasing customer endorsement for F5’s application availability, security, and access solutions. Additionally, various F5 employees were also required to successfully complete a series of Azure related exams – becoming Microsoft Certified Professionals in the process – and thus demonstrating F5’s expertise in delivering solutions specifically fabricated for the Microsoft Azure environment.