You hear it everywhere these days. Companies proclaiming that they want to be “easy to do business" with their channel partners. Who can blame them? There’s not much future for a company that’s difficult to do business with. Yet, most companies are. Especially when supporting their indirect sales channel.
In fact, for most companies, it’s not even easy to define. Every functional business unit in your company might have a different idea of what it will take to become “easy to do business with.” The reason is simple—if all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. For example, if you ask the IT guys it might mean a better partner portal or a better search engine or a new content management system. If you ask the sales and marketing team it might mean a new CRM system, stronger communications or new market development funds. If you ask senior management it might be better metrics, KPI’s and dashboards. And if you ask the partner development team it might mean better partner on-boarding or more formal training and certification.
When a company becomes compartmentalized and fails to look at it holistically, they simply compound the problem by:
1. Forcing multiple, confusing point solutions down the throats of their distribution channel.
2. Spending ridiculous amounts of money on overlapping solutions with mind-numbing expensive redundancy.
3. Creating not only difficult experiences for their channel partners, but programs that are difficult to manage and sustain for the company.
In these situations the journey toward becoming “easy to do business with” takes a disturbing detour down the road to confusion and frustration in the channel. And it happens all the time!
The solution is to not allow the functional business units in your company to make unilateral decisions on becoming easy to do business with. And that means taking all of the great ideas of the best thinkers in your company and bringing them together holistically with a modern cloud-based Partner Relationship Management system.
SEE ALSO: What is PRM Software?
Today’s PRM systems unify the partner’s experience with your company. Everything comes together through a single interface/portal. The partners’ world is simplified because they have access to all the tools and resources they need in one location. Yours is simplified because you can spend less time managing the day-to-day needs of your partners and more time focusing on a strategy to help them grow their business. All the key technologies that you need to better engage, manage and develop your distribution channel are unified into these systems, including:
- Content libraries
- Lead management
- Training & Development programs & management
- Performance management, including incentives & motivation
- Marketing & communications management
- KPI’s, metrics and dashboards
- Portal management including SSO’s into your ecosystem of third party systems
There really is an easy way to become “easy to do business with.”
Contact Us today to discuss the needs of your indirect sales channel.