After a longer than expected deliberation period the vExpert class of 2018 was announced late last Friday (US Time). I’ve been a vExpert since 2012 with 2018 marking my seventh year in the program. I’ve written a lot about the program over the past three or four years since it’s “perceived” value started to go downhill. I’ve criticised parts of the program around the relative ease at which some people where accepted and also on the apparent inability for numbers to be better managed.
However, make no mistake I am still a believer in the value of the vExpert and more importantly I have come to realise over the past few years (solidified over the past couple of months) that apart from the advocacy component that’s critical to the programs existence…people continue to hold the program in extremely high regard.
There are a large number of vExpert’s who expect entry year after year, and rightly so. In truth there are a large number that legitimately demand membership. But there are others who have struggled to be accepted year after year and for who, acceptance into the program represents a significant achievement.
That is to say that while many established vExpert’s assume entry there are a number of people that desire entry. This is an important indicator on the strength of the program and the continued high regard the vExpert program should still be held in. It’s easy to criticise from the inside, however that can’t be allowed to tarnish the reputation of program externally.
This is a great program and one that is valued by the majority of those who actively participate. VMware still commands a loyal community base and the vExpert’s lead from the front in this regard. Remembering that it’s all about the advocacy!
Well done again to the team behind the scenes…The new website is testament to the program moving forward. The vExpert team are critical the success of the program and having been part of the much smaller Veeam Vanguard program, I have a lot of respect for the effort that goes into sorting through two thousand odd applications and renewals.
And finally, well done to those first time vExpert’s! Welcome aboard!
For those wondering, here are the official benefits of the program:
- Invite to our private #Slack channel
- vExpert certificate signed by our CEO Pat Gelsinger.
- Private forums on communities.vmware.com.
- Permission to use the vExpert logo on cards, website, etc for one year
- Access to a private directory for networking, etc.
- Exclusive gifts from various VMware partners.
- Private webinars with VMware partners as well as NFRs.
- Access to private betas (subject to admission by beta teams).
- 365-day eval licenses for most products for home lab / cloud providers.
- Private pre-launch briefings via our blogger briefing pre-VMworld (subject to admission by product teams)
- Blogger early access program for vSphere and some other products.
- Featured in a public vExpert online directory.
- Access to vetted VMware & Virtualization content for your social channels.
- Yearly vExpert parties at both VMworld US and VMworld Europe events.
- Identification as a vExpert at both VMworld US and VMworld EU.