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Frequently asked questions

IDs and passwords

Q1: Why should I join PartnerWorld?
A: PartnerWorld, the worldwide program for IBM Business Partners, offers sales, marketing, technical, training and collaboration benefits to create new opportunities designed to help you grow your business and drive increased profits.

Q2: Who can join PartnerWorld?
A: PartnerWorld is open to Business Partner companies and their employees.

Q3: How do I join PartnerWorld?
A: You must complete the PartnerWorld registration process to begin enjoying the many benefits and resources available to IBM Business Partners.

There are two parts to registration:

  1. Register for an IBM ID if you do not already have one
  2. Register to join PartnerWorld, either as a company or as an employee of your company if they are already registered

Please follow the registration process.

Q4: How do I create an IBM ID?
A: Register for an IBM ID.

Q5: How long does the registration process take?
A: On-line registration takes approximately 15 minutes. Your PartnerWorld welcome notification will arrive within two business days.

Q6: How may I reset my password?
A: To reset your password:

  1. Type in your IBM ID and click "continue"
  2. Answer your security question. Note: your security answer is case sensitive.
  3. Enter your new password twice and submit

Q7:I forgot my security question. How can I reset it?
A: To reset your security question:

  1. Advise the agent that you have forgotten your security answer
  2. Provide the agent with either your IBM ID or your e-mail address
  3. The agent will e-mail you the answer to your security question

Q8: I lost my IBM ID. How can I get another one?
A: Contact the worldwide IBM Registration help desk for assistance.

Profile system

Q1: Who has access to my company's PartnerWorld profile?
A: There are two required roles for your company to manage the PartnerWorld relationship. They are the Authorized Profile Administrator (APA) and the Primary Relationship Contact (PRC), both have access to your company’s PartnerWorld profile. If you need help locating those individuals please contact PartnerWorld.

Q2: How do I update my company's profile?
A:Authorization to perform this task is restricted to the Authorized Profile Administrator (APA). To complete an update:

  1. Sign in to the PartnerWorld Web site by clicking "Member sign in" from PartnerWorld
  2. Select "Update my profile"
  3. On the "Update profile" page, select "update your company profile"

Q3: Where can I find my company token number?
A: Authorization to access the company token in PPS is restricted to the Authorized Profile Administrator (APA).

  1. Sign in to the PartnerWorld Web site by clicking "Member sign in" from PartnerWorld
  2. Select "Update my profile"
  3. Select "Update your company profile"
  4. Expand the Worldwide enterprise record
  5. Choose the "Country Enterprise record"
  6. Choose "General Information"

Q4: How do I add myself to my company's profile?
A: You will need your "company token" from your company's Authorized Profile Administrator (APA) or Primary Relationship Contact (PRC) before taking the following steps:

  1. Go to Join PartnerWorld
  2. Follow the "Submit a profile application to add yourself to your company's membership" link

Q5: How does an individual employee of a PartnerWorld member get access to the PartnerWorld web site and how long does it take?
A:For registration steps see above. As for time, you will have member access to the web site the day after your "pending" profile has been approved by your company's Primary Relationship Contact (PRC). This approval step depends on the availability and action taken on the part of your company PRC.

Q6: Where can I view my company’s pending agreements?
A:Authorization to view pending agreements in PPS is restricted to the Authorized Profile Administrator (APA). To view pending agreements:

  1. Sign in to the PartnerWorld Web site by clicking "Member sign in" from PartnerWorld
  2. Select "Update my profile"
  3. Select "Manage pending agreements" link on the main landing page

Q7: What do I do if the IBM revenue reflected in my company’s profile is incorrect?
A:Review the PartnerWorld revenue details. Contact PartnerWorld if you need assistance.

Q8: How do I get my company’s information published in the IBM Business Partner Locator tool?
A:To learn how to publish information in the IBM Business Partner Locator tool:

  1. Log on to PartnerWorld
  2. Select 'Member sign in' and enter your ID and password
  3. On the right navigational bar select 'Update my profile'
  4. In the middle of the page select 'Update your company profile'
  5. In the middle of the page select 'Country enterprise location'
  6. Scroll to the bottom of the page and select 'Marketing information'
  7. Select Yes to publish information to other Business Partners and/or publish information to customers
  8. Save the record

It is recommended additional information is provided including a brief description about your company, and solutions and services provided if necessary.

Membership levels and criteria

Q1: What criteria are used to calculate the points for PartnerWorld membership levels?
A: PartnerWorld membership level is determined based on the aggregation of points earned for skills/solutions, revenue, references, and customer satisfaction. Access the detailed membership level qualification criteria under the PartnerWorld program section of the web site.

Q2: Where can I see the points accumulated toward my membership level?
A: On the PartnerWorld Level Summary. Access to this information is restricted to the Authorized Profile Administrator (APA). To access the summary:

  1. Log on to PartnerWorld
  2. Select "Member sign in" and enter your ID and password.
  3. Select "Update my profile"
  4. Select "Update your company profile"
  5. Select "Location" and choose "PartnerWorld level summary" to view your information

Q3: Why is my Achieved level different than my PartnerWorld level?
A: Your Achieved level is calculated using the PartnerWorld points tables based on the data we have about your company.

Your company may have lost criteria which qualified you for a higher benefit level due to expirations. You may re-qualify on the expiration related criteria to reestablish your achieved level.

If you have the required number of PartnerWorld points and criteria needed to achieve a higher membership level, your profile will automatically reflect the higher level. If you have questions about anything reflected in your profile, contact PartnerWorld.

Q4: What are the required qualifications to become an Advanced level Business Partner?
A: Qualification for membership levels is based upon your company's attainment toward the criteria specified on the PartnerWorld points table.

Points are earned by:

  • Acquiring skills
  • Developing and selling solutions
  • Driving IBM revenue
  • Achieving customer satisfaction
  • Providing customer references

It takes 10 points to become an Advanced-Level Business Partner, of which at least 6 must be from the skills category (individual employee skills or the firm's verified solutions). Learn more about the detailed qualification criteria for Advanced level membership.

Q5: I have the required number of points to be Advanced level. Why is my Achieved level only Member?
A: You may not meet the required minimum skills requirement. To attain Advanced level, mandatory skills are required. At the Advanced level, points from the category of IBM skills are required.

Q6: How do I become a Premier level Business Partner?
A: It takes 30 points to be a Premier-Level Business Partner, of which at least 12 must be from the skills category (individual employee skills or the firm's verified solutions). Learn more about the detailed qualification criteria for Premier level membership.

IBM Communities

Q1: What are IBM Communities?
A: Communities are on-line groups of people with a common interest. A public community is available for all to join. Membership in a moderated community requires a request to the community owner while a private community is restricted to a particular group.

Q2: What is the benefit to an IBM Business Partner for joining an IBM Community?
A: A community provides a central spot for users to stay in touch, share information, and exchange ideas.

Q3: What is a Profile?
A: Profiles provide a directory of the people in an organization: how to contact them, and how to find out about their projects, skills, and interests. Profiles help you find and get in touch with the right people fast.

  • Increase your visibility. Use profiles to let people in the organization know who you are, what you do, what projects you are working on.
  • Become involved. Use profiles to discover who in the organization is working on projects like yours or finding solutions to similar problems, and what resources they are using to simplify their jobs.
  • Build your own network. Use profiles to make useful connections. Find people with the skills and expertise you need and add them as colleagues.

Q4: How else can I connect online?
A: There are other ways to collaborate with IBM PartnerWorld in digital venues. Visit the IBM PartnerWorld LinkedIn Community to engage with other IBM Business Partners, learn their perspectives and leave your own commentary there on matters that move the IT industry.

Business Partner Locator

Q1: What is the IBM Business Partner Locator (BPL)?
A: The IBM Business Partner Locator is an application for clients, IBM Business Partners and IBM to access our global ecosystem of Business Partners. It supports both public and private Business Partner programs through a web-based partner profile searching solution.

Q2: Who can use it?
A: The IBM Business Partner Locator is available to clients, members of the PartnerWorld Program (all levels) and IBM employees.

Q3. What is the value to the user?
A: For Customers, the tool allows you to search for the most skilled Business Partner to meet your needs.
A: For IBM Business Partners, the tool simplifies identification and teaming with complementary Business Partners across the ecosystem. In addition, the tool enhances Customer visibility of local Business Partners with desired skill sets. Finally, the IBM Business Partner Locator minimizes risks associated with information sharing through a design emphasizing IBM Web and security requirements.
A: For team IBM, The IBM Business Partner Locator simplifies our ability to bring the right skills and solutions to Customers; it eliminates redundant tool costs, and strengthens our security around information sharing.

Q4. In which languages is IBM Business Partner Locator available?
A: IBM Business Partner Locator is available in the following 20 local languages: Canadian French, Columbian Spanish, Czech, Danish, English, Finish, French, German, Japanese, Italian, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Spanish, Swedish, Traditional Chinese, and Turkish.

Q5: How do I assure that my company is properly represented in the Business Partner Locator?
A: The IBM Business Partner Locator draws information from your company profile in the PartnerWorld Profiling System (PPS). Companies can only be viewed if they have specified sharing preferences (in their PartnerWorld profile) allowing them to be searched by clients and Business Partners alike. Company profile updates, if needed, must be made by the Primary Relationship Contact (PRC) or Authorized Profile Administrator (APA).

  1. Visit the PartnerWorld profile Web site
  2. Expand the "Worldwide enterprise record"
  3. Choose the "Country enterprise record"
  4. Choose "Marketing information"
  5. There are two drop down boxes. Select "Yes" on the box(s) reflecting the audiences with which you want to share your profile information.
  6. Select "Save" and allow 24 hours for replication

sample screen shot

Q6: I have published my company information as outlined above but we are still not appearing in the BP Locator when I search on it. What might be the problem?
A: The Partner has not updated their PPS profile for each company location. Each location profile must be updated within the past 25 months to appear in the Locator Tool otherwise the Partner will not be found.

Q7. Who can update the company profile?
A: Only the Primary Relationship Contact (PRC) or Authorized Profile Administrators (APAs) can update company information. They can also add or update employee information. View or update your company or employee information.

Training and certification

Q1: How does an Authorized Profile Administrator (APA) add a candidate ID to an employee profile?
A: To add a candidate ID:

  1. Log on to PartnerWorld
  2. Select "Member sign in" and enter your ID and password
  3. Select "Update my profile"
  4. In the middle of the page select "Update your company profile"
  5. Expand the "Worldwide enterprise record"
  6. Expand the "Country enterprise record"
  7. Open the "Location record"
  8. Scroll down and select "Location list of employees"
  9. Select the name of the employee
  10. Select "Skills and certifications"
  11. Select "Add a candidate ID"
  12. Enter the Candidate ID for Certification. IBM Professional Certification information is automatically transmitted to PPS from the certification testing vendors and IBM Professional Certification database
  13. Select Next
  14. In the Contract Compliance Role dropdown box (for Hardware Contract Compliance calculations), select "Sales" or "Technical" to identify the primary role of the individual certification holder
  15. Select "Save" and you will receive a PPS confirmation number

Q2: How do I add my candidate ID?
A: To add your candidate ID:

  1. Sign into PartnerWorld and click on "Update my profile"
  2. Click on "Update your personal employee profile"
  3. Open your profile and select "Skills and certifications" and add your candidate ID number. IBM Professional Certification information is automatically transmitted to PPS from the certification testing vendor and IBM Professional Certification database.
  4. Select "Next"
  5. In the "Contract Compliance" dropdown box (for Hardware Contract Compliance calculations) select "Sales" or "Technical" to identify the primary role of the individual certification holder
  6. Select "Save" and you will receive a PPS confirmation number

Q3: How long does it take for my certifications to show in my profile once I have entered my candidate ID?
A: Certifications should appear the day after you enter your candidate ID in PPS for certifications previously achieved. However, for newly achieved certifications, it may take 3-5 business days for the certification to appear in PPS after the test is taken at the testing vendor.

Q4: Why aren't my certifications visible in my profile, even though I have entered my candidate ID?
A: It could be that you have more than one candidate ID. If you took an exam under another candidate ID that is not listed in PPS, this will prevent your certifications from recording properly in the Partner Profile System (PPS). You can access the IBM Professional Certification Member Site and request a Candidate ID merge in the Member Services section.

Q5: What is the difference between a Certification and a Mastery exam?
A: Certification: IBM Professional Certification is used to verify skill and proficiency in IBM technology. It is designed to validate an individual's ability to perform a job-role, related to an IBM product, solution or service offering.

Mastery exam: Mastery exams are used to verify the mastery of knowledge covered in a course or defined set of learning materials. Though not a certification, a mastery test can help to assure an individual has achieved a foundation of knowledge and understanding of a given subject.

Q6: Who can sell or deliver IBM Training?
A: IBM Training has teamed with four Global Training Providers (GTPs) to build skills for a smarter planet. Learn more about exciting and profitable new opportunities to grow your business by teaming with them to sell and resell IBM authorized training.

Q7: How do I find no-charge training from IBM?
A: Access to no-charge online training is available on the PartnerWorld web site under Training and certification resources at:

Q8: Can I receive rewards for learning about IBM products and solutions?
A: Know your IBM is a program that provides rewards for both taking education as well as demonstrating your newly acquired skills by selling IBM products and solutions. Come join us and see how you can be rewarded while growing revenue and profit for your firm.

  1. Visit Know Your IBM website for more details:
    Know Your IBM
  2. Start with the Know Your IBM modules and further grow your skills through customized roadmaps

Value Package / Value Options

Q1: What is IBM Business Partner Value Package / Value Options?
A: They are additional benefits you can purchase as an IBM Business Partner. The Value Package includes reimbursement for select education leading to IBM software technical certification, pre-sales/pre-deployment technical support and access to IBM software. The Software Access Option provides access to IBM software only. The IBM Systems and Middleware Technical Support options for software development are stand-alone benefits where you can choose limited e-mail, unlimited e-mail, or unlimited e-mail and voice technical support.

Learn more details about the Value Package/Value Options.

See our comprehensive frequently asked questions about these offerings.

Independent software vendors (ISVs)

Q1: How do I open a technical support request (also known as a Problem Management Record or PMR)?
A: To open a technical support request (PMR), go to Entitled email and voice technical support (sign in required). You must have purchased the IBM Value Package or the IBM Systems and middleware technical support option for software development for use of this support.

Q2: What is the Global Solutions Directory?
A: It is a world wide listing of solutions and services offered by IBM Business Partners. The public website provides visibility to external customers, Business Partners, IBM marketing and sales teams. Additionally, the Global Solution Directory is the entry point to various PartnerWorld programs such as technical validations and client verifications.

Q3: How do I access the Global Solutions Directory?
A:To access the Global Solutions Directory:

  1. Go to Global Solutions Directory
  2. Select "Manage solutions" and sign in

Q4: What options are available to me within the Global Solutions Directory?
A:You will see the available options under the "Manage Solutions" page of the Global Solution Directory as follows:

  1. "Create and update your solutions"
  2. "Submit a Business Partner solution for verification"
  3. "Submit a client reference"
  4. "Nominate your solution for an IBM Industry Framework, technical validation or specialty
  5. "View response cards"

Q5: My PartnerWorld level summary indicates that a verified ISV solution is worth a maximum of 8 points. What do I need to do to get my solution verified?
A: An approved ISV solution can be achieved by selecting "Submit a Business Partner solution for verification" under "Manage solutions" within the Global Solutions Directory. Through this process, you may submit for PartnerWorld points a solution that you, the Business Partner, has developed and installed at a named customer. The solution must be a repeatable, for sale solution that you make available to many customers as an offering. The solution must also influence the sale and install of one or more IBM hardware, software or services products. IBM will verify your solution for its content (it does what you say it does) and with the named customer (that they have your solution installed, it is running on the IBM products or services you claimed, and that the customer is happy with your solution). Once verified, you will receive points toward PartnerWorld level for your solution.

Q6: How do I submit a Business Partner solution for verification to qualify for PartnerWorld points?
A:To submit a Business Partner solution for verification:

  1. Go to Global Solutions Directory
  2. Select "Manage solutions" and sign in
  3. From "Manage solutions", select "Submit a Business Partner solution for verification"
  4. Scroll down and select "Submit a solution for verification and/or a client reference"
  5. Select the approved solution to be verified
  6. Select the option regarding if the customer you are referencing is accessing your solution over the internet
  7. Complete the form and submit your application. You will be notified by e-mail if your request has been approved or denied.

General questions

Q1: How do I find out more about IBM tradeshows?
A: For information about IBM events, webcasts, seminars and workshops, visit the PartnerWorld Event Finder web site.

Q2: How is IBM middleware licensed?
A: Licensing for IBM Middleware Software is done through the Passport Advantage program and Passport Advantage Express.

Q3: How do I find out more about the recent navigation updates to the PartnerWorld Web site?
A: See highlights and details about the recent changes to the site by visiting What's new at PartnerWorld.

Q4: How do I become authorized to resell hardware or services?
A: To become authorized:

  1. Log on to PartnerWorld
  2. Select "Reseller" from the dropdown under the "PartnerWorld program" heading in the left navigator
  3. Select "Join PartnerWorld and become a reseller"
  4. Select "Apply to sell IBM products and services"

Q5: Must I be authorized to resell IBM Software?
A: Not all IBM Software requires authorization to resell. IBM Software products are grouped into open products and the authorized portfolio. All IBM Business Partners may resell open products. IBM Business Partners who have obtained authorization through Software Value Plus may resell authorized products and IBM Software ValueNet products.

Q6: Where should I go to join an initiative?
A: To join an initiative:

  1. Log on to PartnerWorld
  2. Select "Member sign in" and enter your ID and password
  3. Select Select "Update my profile"
  4. Select "Update your company profile"
  5. Select "Benefits and Relationships" from the left navigator
  6. Select from the menu

Q7: What are the Beacon Awards?
A: The Beacon Awards recognize IBM Business Partners who have raised the standard for delivering innovative solutions and exemplary client satisfaction. The Beacon Awards recognize innovation and achievement across a wide-range of solutions and markets to support a Smarter Planet. The winning solutions demonstrate maximum client value by addressing real business issues. Learn more.

Latin America

Q. Where should Latin American Business Partners send the required signed hardcopy of their contracts?
A. Please see the country-specific instructions below.

Brasil
IBM Brasil
Rodovia Jornalista Francisco Aguirre Proença (SP - 101), km 9
Bairro: Chácaras Assay
13186-900 Hortolândia - SP
A/C : Carla Cristina Kishimoto de Oliveira - Baia CL01 (MM17) ou Flavia Isabel Dall Aneze Muniz - Baia CL02 (MM17)

Mexico
Alfonso Napoles Gandara 3111
Col. Parque Corp Santa Fe,
Mexico DF, CP 01210, Alvaro Obregon

Atención: Claudio Archundia Romero

For SSA, Business Partners should contact the focal points at each BPSO office:
Argentina: Jimena Soledad Funes
Chile: Guillermo Riquelme
Colombia: Maria Catalina Uricoechea, Maria Andrea Garcia
Ecuador: Katherine Sanchez
Peru y Bolivia: Aisha Novotny
Uruguay y Paraguay: Silvia Evia
Venezuela: Meibell Meza

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