F5 Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV), the global leader in Application Delivery Networking (ADN), today announced the launch of the GUARDIAN Professional Services Partner Program. The program expands F5’s UNITYTM Partner Program to provide additional benefits for partners with consulting and professional services capabilities in conjunction with authorization tier requirements. The GUARDIAN Professional Services Partner Program is a capability-based program designed to recognize partner investments in the skills required for successful deployment of F5 ® technologies. The program helps partners drive deeper sales engagements, higher margins, and more strategic customer relationships. Benefits of the GUARDIAN Professional Services Program are centered on education, sales enablement, and promotion to the market. “The GUARDIAN Professional Services Program demonstrates our continued commitment to channel partners who excel in implementing and optimizing F5 solutions to deliver high value to customers,” says Dean Darwin, SVP, Worldwide Partner Organization at F5. “With the program, channel organizations with deep expertise in F5 solutions are recognized and rewarded for their skills and are in position to offer customers new consulting services, creating additional revenue opportunities and deepening customer engagement.” The program consists of four authorization tiers: Installation Provider, Advanced Implementation Provider, Application Security Provider, and Optimization Provider. For each tier, the F5 partner must meet UNITY Program tier requirements and have a required number of personnel certified at the appropriate level within the F5 Professional Certification Program. GUARDIAN ® partners have access to best practices, support in creating packaged offerings, on-request assistance from F5 ® Professional Services, early availability of F5 product technical training, and discounts on training and certification exams. To ensure that the GUARDIAN Program provides value to our partners, F5 conducted a year-long design and pilot phase to garner feedback and key insights from top F5 partners around the world. To make certain it will continue to provide significant value to F5 partners and customers, the program includes key performance indicators and governance specifications focused on driving excellent customer and partner satisfaction, as well as increased awareness for member organizations.