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The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) is hoping to better
serve the IT industry with the rollout of seven new collaborative communities
designed to gather input from a range of industry segments for a deeper dive
into the concerns of IT’s most important niches.

Announced last week, the communities will be a way for CompTIA’s 2,100 member
companies to participate in dialogues with the industry associations and other
members about the most pressing issues facing their businesses, says Jim
Hamilton, senior director of member relations for the association.

"What we’re really looking for is a broad cross section of leaders in the
industry in those various subject matters, who can come together to work on a
way that will benefit the industry as a whole and really promote our mandate,
which is to advance the global IT industry," he says.

The seven member-driven communities are cloud/SaaS, health IT, IT security, IT services
and support, managed IT services, open source, and small business owners.
According to Hamilton, CompTIA’s
goals for these communities are twofold. The first is to better encourage
participation in the association and offer members a greater voice in generally
representing their company. And the second is to offer CompTIA better
intelligence into specific industry matters that will impact how it carries out
its strategic initiatives over the next few years.

"We’re really reaching out and making it as inclusive as possible and
getting as many thought leaders and key individuals involved in the communities
as possible," Hamilton says.
"And then the second thing is really we’re working on a number of high-level
initiatives; we’d like to see how we can further those, how we can grow those,
how we can build those and really make sure that when we do deliver these
different initiatives, that they’re contributing to our mandate."

No matter what their specialization, Hamilton
encourages the channel to get out and participate in the new communities.

"In all of these communities we need a lot of voices, so we need all of
the parties in the channel to participate," he says. "That includes
distributors, vendors, solution providers and resellers."