Video | August 3, 2009

Resellers: Improve Your Efficiency

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John Black, president of Catalyst Telecom, talks about reseller efficiency in an exclusive interview with Business Solutions magazine President Jim Roddy.


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Length: 10 min, 54 sec

BSM: One of those things (you offer) is custom configuration and how it adds to the efficiency, cutting several weeks out of the process and adding to a reseller’s billing and cash flow. If you can give some more details on that, that would be great.

Black: Typically (the product) goes to the reseller for them to do the staging and the remote programming, and then they have to reship to the end user’s site. So what we’re offering is doing the staging and the remote programming in our warehouse, drop-shipping it to the end user ready to be racked and stacked or installed. All in all, that cuts about three weeks off the A/R cycle because we invoice the day it leaves our warehouse. Typically, the reseller can’t invoice until it’s either onsite or installed at the end user.

What we’re suggesting is that as they grow, they don’t continue to hire technicians to do this staging or inside programming. Or reallocate the people they have today into other positions that are more related to sales and marketing, because our intent is to do more back-office tasks for our resellers and let them focus on more of their customer-facing tasks.

BSM: If you can talk about training a little bit. Two that really jumped out to me were inside sales training and then “How to Sell to CFOs.” They’re making a lot of the decisions nowadays because purse strings are getting a lot tighter.

Black: We have developed a lot of custom education for our resellers based on resellers’ requirements. So we can pick and choose from those modules already developed to create a custom curriculum for a reseller based on their specific needs.

A more common phenomenon, especially with the economy, is decisions that used to be made by the CIO have now been elevated to the CFO. The CFO is really making tradeoffs across the company. It could be diverse technologies or not even technology decisions at all. It could be new buildings – just a lot of trade-off decisions have to be made.

We’ve developed a webinar-based class to help salespeople really understand how to better sell to the CFO. Our CFO at ScanSource was involved in development of the training. We just think a lot of salespeople really need to structure their proposals differently and really present it differently to a CFO than you do a CIO.

This is only a portion of this exclusive interview. For the complete video, go to the media player at the top of this page.


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