By Saad Shahzad, Chief Strategy Officer, dinCloud
It’s more than just large commissions on all monthly recurring revenues…
The channel industry is evolving – it’s no longer focused on pushing boxes, but selling solutions. Channel partners need to ensure they can provide the end customer with solutions currently in customer demand. Through internal analysis with one of our national VAR partners, we found that an average account executive makes 7x commissions selling a cloud solution vs. a similar on premise solution. Given the accelerating adoption of cloud computing, you can see why channel partners are focused on adding various cloud services to their arsenal of solutions.
A major concern and roadblock for cloud adoption is with SLAs (service level agreements). When a cloud provider successfully meets its SLAs, the channel partners can be comfortable that their end customers will have a great experience in the cloud. Hence, it’s very prudent for a channel partner to launch a proof of concept with the cloud provider. In addition to the benefits end customers receive by moving to the cloud, the channel partner can verify performance, support, and onboarding process. Furthermore, by being a user of the cloud solution, the channel partner will be very effective on the sales side as well. This will ensure a long-term successful partnership and avoidance of any roadblocks.
Many channel partners are saying that they do not see many cloud providers out there with a complete end-to-end infrastructure solution. End customers don’t want to work with multiple providers to get different services (whether it’s desktops, servers, storage, etc.) – a “one stop shop” is very important in having a single point of accountability. Channel partners are more easily able to close multiple deals because their end customers can pick and choose from a host of different cloud services.
Last but certainly not least, is the ability for channel partners to use cloud management software to orchestrate the cloud environment for their end customers. Cloud management software can cost a lot of money, but in some cases, a vendor will offer this software for completely free. For example, dinCloud does this - we believe that showing value to channel partners will ultimately draw the line between the winners and the losers. While using white-label enabled software, channel partners can demonstrate significant value to their end customers (provision, remote console, upgrade/downgrade, etc.). This better positions channel partners to retain their end customers in a very competitive channel market. They are no longer just a vendor, but a trusted cloud partner and advisor for their end customers.
Channel partners can close multiple deals as long as they are getting compensated on a monthly basis, have confidence in their vendor’s ability to meet SLA’s, can pick and choose services from an end-to-end platform, and can manage all those services. This will ultimately show a lot of value to their end customers.
Saad Shahzad is Chief Strategy Officer for dinCloud, a cloud transformation company that helps organizations rapidly migrate their IT infrastructure to the cloud. Follow @dinCloud on Twitter.