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Cisco Ventures Into 'Business Value' Certifications

What is a "business value specialist," and how can such experts transform the application of technology in the workplace and in daily living? Cisco Learning Network is exploring this proposition with a new extension of its certification program.

Business Value Specialist workplace discussionCisco is venturing into a new certification realm in the area of what it calls “Digital Transformation,” with a series of new Business Value Specialist certifications.


The driving force behind these certifications — which aim as much at Cisco employees and partners as they do at high-end enterprises with significant Cisco investment — is to develop a deep understanding of customer needs and pain points. BVS-certified individuals would then use their knowledge of Cisco products, platforms, and services to help to address these problems.


As such, this is a departure from the company’s prior focus on technology and solutions. It represents an attempt to make sure that customers can realize a proper return on their investment in Cisco, and to make sure that such customers are extracting all the possible value from their existing investments.


Understanding Digital Transformation


Digital transformation is something of a buzzword at the moment, in both IT and business. It refers to the general and increasing transformation of business activities, processes, models, and skills/knowledge in order to take fullest possible advantage of digital technologies.


It also seeks to maximize the impact and value of such technologies across society at large, and to remake the business landscape strategically. Digital transformation prioritizes the use of digital technologies to add value and capability where it will do the most good.


A more contrarian view of digital transformation is suggested by FoodTV’s recent mini-show “You’re Eating It Wrong,” which shows viewers better ways to do things than conventional wisdom and practice teaches. For example, viewers learn how how to stuff a taco, or make and consume falafel.


As applied to business, the “You’re doing it wrong” approach seeks to teach and show consumers of digital technology more and better ways to put it to work. The particular emphasis is on how to make technology a servant of business, and a tool to improve business value. How can businesses maximize returns on technology investment, while simultaneously making the world a better place to live and work?


Cisco’s attempts to improve customer understanding (and realization) of business value fall very much in this vein.


Cisco’s Business Value Certifications


There are three current business value specialist credentials now on offer, each of which requires passing 1 or 2 exams, along with an additional “Success Manager” Specialist credential: