CMOs: Ask these five simple questions up front to stop the battle with CIOs and get IT on board with your channel technology wish list
Partner Relationship Management leader Impartner shares 'tale of two companies;' how better anticipating IT's concerns let one company leap frog another in PRM implementation
SILICON SLOPES, Utah, March 15, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- In today's world of bi-modal IT, the battle continues to rage between CMOs wanting to make rapid-fire technology purchasing decisions and IT teams struggling to balance business integrity while at the same time evaluating and implementing new technologies demanded by marketing and other business functions. That battle is never truer than when it comes to Partner Relationship Management (PRM) solutions, which have been proven to as much as double indirect sales, but are often bogged down by organizational alignment issues because they integrate with and ultimately consolidate a number of disparate technologies.
A new webinar featuring Global SaaS PRM leader Impartner CMO Dave R Taylor and Gartner Research Director and PRM Analyst Ilona Hansen, outlines the following five key questions sales and marketing pros need to ask up front to streamline PRM purchase decisions with IT:
1. What are "commercially available" PRM applications?
- In the market today, homegrown portals have gone by the wayside, as more robust, out-of-the-box solutions ease the implementation process and speed time to market. Sales and marketers will be wise to have already explored the landscape of competitive options to give IT faith they've explored the pros and cons of the key players and have a formed point of view on why the solution they're recommending is the best fit for their company's needs.
2. What are the benefits of PRM solutions?
- PRM solutions allow you to automate and optimize your interaction with your partners. You save time, relieve the administration burden of your processes and improve collaboration – regardless of language and location. Make sure you can clearly articulate the value of a PRM to your IT team from your perspective and the perspective of your partners and prioritize the functions that are important to you.
3. Is the competition using the technology?
- In today's competitive market, the challenge isn't finding just any partner, it's in finding the right partner. If your channel team and program aren't giving top-notch partners the experience they want, you can bet someone else will. While IT teams get endless requests to evaluate technologies, it's critical to take a look at what the competition is and isn't using to enhance PX (Partner Experience.) If you're the first in your space to use a PRM, you'll be able to use it as a competitive advantage, automate your processes and free up your team to spend more time selling. If your competition is ahead, make sure you find out what your partners find most valuable, so your request to IT already focuses on the most important functions.
4. Does this solution meet the needs of channel sales management and the partners?
- Most of us are under tremendous pressure to make decisions and implement fast. But ensuring you take the time to get input from your internal and external stakeholders is critical. The time you spend up front on understanding demands and prioritizing them and identifying which legacy systems are already in use and may need to be replaced or incorporated, will more than pay back in a smooth implementation, and ultimately a solution that best meets your organization's needs.
5. What technology considerations are important?
- Without question, this is one of the key questions. While the value of a SaaS versus an on-premise or colocation solution is clear, your IT team will want to understand how the SaaS solution you're looking at integrates with your company's business systems. Everything you can do up front to calm the alphabet soup of your IT environment will pay off: make it easy to see how the PRM connects to POS, ERP and CRM solutions; what kind of APIs are available to integrate with legacy systems; how data flows and synchs, and whether the solution has passed BURP security testing. This will go miles in assuring IT that you are partners with them in wanting to find solutions that not only meet your needs from a functional standpoint, but also integrate with your network in a way that doesn't cause more harm than good.
"At Impartner, we have the benefit of being on the front lines of the PRM purchasing decision for hundreds of corporations," Taylor said. "It's clear that the sales and marketing teams who most successfully anticipate the needs of their IT colleagues and approach the PRM buying decision with them in tandem will have the smoothest process and the most successful outcome, which is critical for any business selling through indirect channels. Organizations using a contemporary, commercially available PRM solution will outperform the competition by providing a better partner experience and a more optimized partner program."
Click here to watch the webinar featuring Taylor and Hansen to learn what sales and marketing teams should—and shouldn't—do to streamline their PRM buying process with IT.
Impartner delivers the industry's most advanced SaaS-based Partner Relationship Management solution, helping companies worldwide manage their partner relationships and accelerate revenue and profitability through indirect sales channels. Impartner PRM is the industry's only turnkey solution that can deploy a world-class Partner Portal in as few as 30 days, using the company's highly engineered, three-step Velocity™ onboarding process. For more information on Impartner, which is based in Utah's tech hotbed, the Silicon Slopes, visit www.impartner.com, or in the United States call +1 801 501 7000, for EMEA general call +33 1 40 90 31 20, for London call +44 0 20 3283 4465, and for LATAM call +1 954 364 7883.
This webinar is sponsored by Impartner. Any editorial supplied by Impartner is independent of Gartner analysis. All Gartner research is © 2016 by Gartner, Inc. and/or its Affiliates. All rights reserved.
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