We live in a TLA (Three Letter Acronym) happy world, and there’s one very special TLA that very few IBM customers – and even IBM’ers – are aware of – VAP. We have a VAP that we are very proud of and today received notification from IBM that it was recently revalidated. I thought I should write about it, because VAP really is the best way for customers to buy IBM solutions. Even if the VAP you need isn’t one we offer, ask your IBM team or Business Partner if they offer a VAP for the solution you are considering.
VAP stands for Value Advantage Plus. Not exactly clear, huh? Well, basically what a VAP does is offers IBM Business Partners a discount on IBM software solutions when they bundle services and training. This does two things: 1) it offers an incentive to Business Partners to include services and training in a solution proposal, and 2) it reduces the cost of software to the partner.
Most technical solutions require technical assistance to implement; anyone who has been given a redbook and told to figure it out knows how difficult a do-it-yourself implementation is, and we have all unfortunately become accustomed to the software license cost being the only cost discussed when purchasing IBM software. The second benefit, reduced cost to the Business Partner should, if you are working with an honest and ethical partner (think The Fillmore Group!) result in a lower price for you, the customer.
The Fillmore Group’s VAP is for IBM replication solutions, including Q Replication and ICDC. We are currently working on both Q Replication and ICDC implementation projects and have historically been the exclusive provider of public IBM education for these products.
If you are considering a replication solution purchase and implementation please let us know – we would be happy to help you take advantage of this little known (terrific!) way to make sure your solution project is a success.