27 Dec 2022
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Is the GCP Partner Program Right for Your Business? Insights

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By Tyrone Showers
Co-Founder Taliferro


The Google Cloud Platform Partner Program is a program that allows you to become a certified partner and sell, integrate, or deploy Google Cloud services. But before you go jumping into the program, there are some things you should know. Here are five situations where becoming a GCP partner isn't suitable for your business.

You may not have the resources

If any of the following are true, you should not be a Google Cloud Partner:

  • You don't have the money.
  • You don't have the time.
  • You don't have the experience.
  • You don't have people to help with GCP work or network between companies interested in cloud computing solutions (referring partners).
  • You need to do something smaller for your team.

If you are partnering with Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and it is not a good fit, there should be enough warning signs that you will not be able to make it work.

For example, if your team needs the right resources required to do the project or they need expertise in the subject matter, this would be a huge problem.

Another reason this would not work out is that your budget may only allow for affordable services.

You need to get a good return on investment from the program

You should be able to measure ROI. Most of us know how much money we're making from a program, but it can be easy to forget how much time and energy is spent on it. You need to measure the return on your investment to know whether or not it's worth continuing with the program.

If you don't see a good return on your investment, then why bother? The best way to determine if a program is right for you is by measuring its value to your business and seeing if that exceeds its cost.

You're only looking at GCP's partner program as a way to meet people and connect with customers

As a GCP partner, they say they can provide connections between you and your customers that would not otherwise exist. If you're only looking to get customers and meet people, then being a GCP partner isn't for you. You need to be focused on growing your business and building long-term relationships with other companies. In this case, the Partner Program is one way we can help you do that.

If meeting new people or making connections is essential to your business strategy, then becoming part of the Google Cloud Partner Network makes sense. They claim partners get access to new tools/products/services that will help them build their businesses faster, but I have yet to see much evidence.

You are uncomfortable with the level of commitment required

As mentioned earlier, being a GCP Partner means investing in yourself and your team as much as it does invest in the GCP program itself. You'll have to make time for training courses, certifications, and conferences—and even more importantly—you'll have to make time for yourself and your team members so that they can do all of those things too. This can sometimes lead partners away from their core business because they're constantly busy with non-revenue generating activities (like getting certified), but if this doesn't bother you, then, by all means, go ahead and accept being part of our network. This is a big one, and you need to be honest with yourself before deciding whether your partnership would be a good fit.

You are minority business

If you're a minority-owned business, GCP is not for you. You need to take some extra steps to qualify as a partner; the process is more complicated than it should be. The good news is that Google has been improving the program over time, but they still have work to do before it is fully inclusive of all businesses, regardless of race or ethnicity.

As an African American owned business, I can tell you firsthand that this program was not designed with my demographic in mind—and it shows. The information is scattered and confusting, the links and videos don't work, it's a mess. If selected as an approved vendor, other conditions like getting credit checked at Experian could negatively impact your bottom line if passed on by Google as part of its vetting process. This can also make it more expensive for small businesses to grow their revenue stream with big companies like Cisco or Intel.

It's a great idea to be a GCP partner if you have the resources to make it work. However, if you're unsure whether your team has what it takes to handle the tasks involved in being a GCP partner, it's best to wait until they do. If the time comes when you feel like your team has what it takes, then consider applying. It can also be beneficial to look into other partnerships with companies outside the Google Cloud Platform. For example, Amazon Web Services has many different types of partnerships.


If you've read this far, you're deciding whether to join the GCP partner program. I understand that it's not easy—you may have questions about what's involved and how much time it will require from your team members. Contact me and I will tell you candidly of my experience.

Tyrone Showers