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Tim Hall has done it again! He has just released the 2nd edition of "Max Power".
Rather than get into details here, I urge you to check out this announcement post.
It's a massive upgrade, and well worth checking out. -E

 

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Thread: Ideas for benefits of getting the CCMA Certification

  1. #1
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    Default Ideas for benefits of getting the CCMA Certification

    In the related thread, the common theme has come out asking "Why should I get this Certification? What does it provide to me?". I like to get a thread going so we can discuss the potential benefits beyond vanity and a piece of paper that would provide an incentive for ourselves and our employers to dedicate the time, money and effort to getting this certificate.

    Here's my list of ideas :

    - Access to 12-month NFR licenses for product set, that can be used for in-house development and testing. Once you're at this level, maintaining 30-day licenses is a pain, and this would also naturally promote the use of the product set, particularly in some of the more recent technologies (Eventia Suite, Connectra, Integrity etc). Fair-use and non-commercial use clauses would, of cause, have to come into play, but this is no different to what is done with Partners.

    - Free entry to Check Point Experience events. We're your best supporters, let us go to your premier events for free, so we can spread the word.

    - Additional product discount for Companies/Partners with CCMA. This is the carrot for employers. If your UserCenter account has a CCMA on it, drop a couple extra points on product installs or renewals. If a company can see that they can save $$$ by getting us certified, then they'll push us to get the cert. It also gives the certification a value for individuals, as hiring a CCMA gives you the best security resource, but also a resrouce that can provide a financial reward. Even if the amount of the discount was capped, its still something very tangible we can send to our bosses to get them interested. The revenue justification is also pretty easy - presumably a CCMA would solve 90+% of support issues in a company, so theres an obvious saving around the fact that customers with CCMA's onboard won't be utilising the CP TAC for anything other than the serious bug/R&D involvement issues. Thus saving the TAC money.

    - Automatic FastPath through the TAC. A CCMA wants to talk to escalation support immediately, not lose time going through the level 1 issues.

    - Perhaps an opt-in Public Register of CCMA's on the Check Point website, for consultants or partners to list their CCMA resources (I'm thinking of the partner locater for my model here). Let employers know where to find us!


    A lot of these ideas are based around the benefits in the Partner Programs, and largely reflect these. And if you think about it, the people that have been involved for the periods that we're talking about to get the required level of certification are already Check Point Partners if not in name then at least in spirit. Seems like a good place to start.

    Please put any other ideas here - hopefully the good people at CP can look at this and give us something to make this cert valuable.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Ideas for benefits of getting the CCMA Certification

    Quote Originally Posted by Thorpuse View Post
    In the related thread, the common theme has come out asking "Why should I get this Certification? What does it provide to me?". I like to get a thread going so we can discuss the potential benefits beyond vanity and a piece of paper that would provide an incentive for ourselves and our employers to dedicate the time, money and effort to getting this certificate.

    Here's my list of ideas :

    - Access to 12-month NFR licenses for product set, that can be used for in-house development and testing. Once you're at this level, maintaining 30-day licenses is a pain, and this would also naturally promote the use of the product set, particularly in some of the more recent technologies (Eventia Suite, Connectra, Integrity etc). Fair-use and non-commercial use clauses would, of cause, have to come into play, but this is no different to what is done with Partners.
    I recently tried to acquire a 12-month license for work I was doing with one of Check Point's partners. It required two weeks of begging and pleading and fighting and then dragging in a reseller to make it go through. It was a nightmare, and this was for a Check Point partner, who was already spending thousands of dollars per year in partner fees. I was astonished to learn that Check Point Partners still have to buy their own licenses at retail, or at least spend a thousand dollars on labor every year to fight them over getting a "free" license.

    Check Point is going to have to change its culture, I suspect, before they allow anyone, especially CCMA's (who are "end users", not "paying customers") to have a free 12-month license. It's been my experience that Check Point just doesn't do "free".

    Quote Originally Posted by Thorpuse View Post
    - Free entry to Check Point Experience events. We're your best supporters, let us go to your premier events for free, so we can spread the word.
    This sounds very reasonable. However, two years ago I offered to attend all four worldwide CPX's, as President of CPUG, to give technical and user group presentations and help start local user group chapters. I was willing to give Check Point a couple of weeks of my time, on the road, at no charge, if only they'd pay my travel expenses. It was a solid win-win for both Check Point and their customers. After five weeks of begging, I couldn't get anyone to even reply to my e-mails or return my calls.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thorpuse View Post
    - Additional product discount for Companies/Partners with CCMA. This is the carrot for employers. If your UserCenter account has a CCMA on it, drop a couple extra points on product installs or renewals. If a company can see that they can save $$$ by getting us certified, then they'll push us to get the cert. It also gives the certification a value for individuals, as hiring a CCMA gives you the best security resource, but also a resrouce that can provide a financial reward. Even if the amount of the discount was capped, its still something very tangible we can send to our bosses to get them interested. The revenue justification is also pretty easy - presumably a CCMA would solve 90+% of support issues in a company, so theres an obvious saving around the fact that customers with CCMA's onboard won't be utilising the CP TAC for anything other than the serious bug/R&D involvement issues. Thus saving the TAC money.
    I like your logic here. Having a CCMA on staff will reduce the load on the TAC, so a support discount seems reasonable, and it will help bring employers on board with getting their employees certified.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thorpuse View Post
    - Automatic FastPath through the TAC. A CCMA wants to talk to escalation support immediately, not lose time going through the level 1 issues.
    We all do, but don't get me started. This is a variant on the "Why don't they fix technical support?" question we all keep asking.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thorpuse View Post
    - Perhaps an opt-in Public Register of CCMA's on the Check Point website, for consultants or partners to list their CCMA resources (I'm thinking of the partner locater for my model here). Let employers know where to find us!
    I'll be glad to host that here on CPUG. That sounds very useful.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thorpuse View Post
    A lot of these ideas are based around the benefits in the Partner Programs, and largely reflect these. And if you think about it, the people that have been involved for the periods that we're talking about to get the required level of certification are already Check Point Partners if not in name then at least in spirit. Seems like a good place to start.

    Please put any other ideas here - hopefully the good people at CP can look at this and give us something to make this cert valuable.
    I think one of the problems here is that certified employees are only "end users", while Check Point's focus is on "paying customers". Check Point is very, very sales-oriented. Sure, certified employees can help drive future sales, but there doesn't appear to be much interest in that at Check Point.

    Some more ideas:

    - Create a Check Point Technical Advisory Board, and CCMA gets you membership. And then listen to what they have to say.

    - Create a Check Point Education and Certification Advisory Board, and CCMA gets you membership. And then listen to them.

    - An annual meeting just for CCMA's, at the same time and place as CPX. Have Gil Schwed take us all out to dinner.

    All the ideas you've suggested seem smart and reasonable.
    Barry J. Stiefel ("Stee-ful" or "Shtee-ful")
    B.S., MBA, CCSA/CCSE/CCSE+/CCSI
    Resilience RCSE/RCSI, Fortinet FCSE
    CISSP, MCSE, NSA ISM
    Founder of CPUG
    Founder of CPUG University

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Ideas for benefits of getting the CCMA Certification

    Quote Originally Posted by BarryStiefel View Post
    I recently tried to acquire a 12-month license for work I was doing with one of Check Point's partners. It required two weeks of begging and pleading and fighting and then dragging in a reseller to make it go through. It was a nightmare, and this was for a Check Point partner, who was already spending thousands of dollars per year in partner fees. I was astonished to learn that Check Point Partners still have to buy their own licenses at retail, or at least spend a thousand dollars on labor every year to fight them over getting a "free" license.

    Check Point is going to have to change its culture, I suspect, before they allow anyone, especially CCMA's (who are "end users", not "paying customers") to have a free 12-month license. It's been my experience that Check Point just doesn't do "free".

    What reseller fees? Resellers can receive a 12 month Lab/Demo license for one copy of any Check Point software product and hefty discounts on hardware.

    It is a pain to get the NFR license as it requires a "$0" NSP and still has to go through distribution, but it can be done by the reseller's channel manager.
    Last edited by chillyjim; 2007-08-31 at 12:19.

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    Default Re: Ideas for benefits of getting the CCMA Certification

    Quote Originally Posted by Thorpuse View Post
    - Access to 12-month NFR licenses for product set, that can be used for in-house development and testing. Once you're at this level, maintaining 30-day licenses is a pain, and this would also naturally promote the use of the product set, particularly in some of the more recent technologies (Eventia Suite, Connectra, Integrity etc). Fair-use and non-commercial use clauses would, of cause, have to come into play, but this is no different to what is done with Partners.
    This would be good, but what happens after 12 months? Renewal of certification? Some type of CCMA program membership maybe?

    - Additional product discount for Companies/Partners with CCMA. This is the carrot for employers. If your UserCenter account has a CCMA on it, drop a couple extra points on product installs or renewals. If a company can see that they can save $$$ by getting us certified, then they'll push us to get the cert. It also gives the certification a value for individuals, as hiring a CCMA gives you the best security resource, but also a resrouce that can provide a financial reward. Even if the amount of the discount was capped, its still something very tangible we can send to our bosses to get them interested. The revenue justification is also pretty easy - presumably a CCMA would solve 90+% of support issues in a company, so theres an obvious saving around the fact that customers with CCMA's onboard won't be utilising the CP TAC for anything other than the serious bug/R&D involvement issues. Thus saving the TAC money.
    I like this one, I suspect TAC would like it too. There are a lot of "how do I install my firewall?" questions going to TAC.

    - Automatic FastPath through the TAC. A CCMA wants to talk to escalation support immediately, not lose time going through the level 1 issues.
    I've been asking that for years! Check Point SE's don't even get it.
    Premium and Diamond support customers do, in theory any way, bypass level 1, but I think they still go through the "Call Routers" (Level 0?).

    - Perhaps an opt-in Public Register of CCMA's on the Check Point website, for consultants or partners to list their CCMA resources (I'm thinking of the partner locater for my model here). Let employers know where to find us!
    Cisco does this for CCIE's. I'm sure CHKP will set something like that up

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    Default Re: Ideas for benefits of getting the CCMA Certification

    Quote Originally Posted by chillyjim View Post
    This would be good, but what happens after 12 months? Renewal of certification? Some type of CCMA program membership maybe?
    Well, the CCSE SecureKnowledge access only lasts for 18 months anyway. I would see these working as something provided on application, rather than given by default. This is really for product evaluation/pilot purposes, so I would guess that there would be questions asked if you wanted to renew it. These could be managed on a case-by-case basis. Don't see it as a big issue really.

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    Default Re: Ideas for benefits of getting the CCMA Certification

    "I've been asking that for years! Check Point SE's don't even get it.
    Premium and Diamond support customers do, in theory any way, bypass level 1, but I think they still go through the "Call Routers" (Level 0?)."

    that is completely BS, absolutely NOT TRUE. At my previous companies,
    we did have Diamond support and checkpoint TAC engineers is just as
    clueless as general checkpoint TAC. The only difference is that they
    assign a dedicated TAC engineer to your case. Therefore, one clueless
    TAC guy will be responsible for your TAC case instead of your case being
    bounced around by multiple clueless Checkpoint TAC engineers.

    my 2c.

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