Channel Marker

June 28, 2019  9:44 PM

Dell Technologies partners thrive under updated program

Spencer Smith Spencer Smith Profile: Spencer Smith
Channel partners, Dell, Partner programs, Resellers

Dell Technologies continues to report strong channel growth and highlight the cross-selling opportunities inherent in its portfolio.

Looking back at its fiscal year 2020 first quarter, which ended May 3, Dell painted a healthy picture of sustained momentum in partner sales. According to Cheryl Cook, senior vice president of global marketing at Dell, channel sales grew 15% year on year in the first quarter, while distribution rose by 10%. Partner sales of Dell’s client products increased 9% year on year, servers by 18% and storage by 26%. Cook noted that Dell’s reporting of storage sales included the performance of its converged infrastructure products such as VXrail. Dell Technologies partners brought in 15,000 new customers in the first quarter.

“We think the strategy and the breadth of the portfolio are helping us be in a good position to win,” Cook said.

A focus on cross-selling

Since the early days of Dell’s merger with EMC, the company has relied on the breadth of its portfolio as a crucial differentiator in the market. The cross-selling potential of the portfolio was a theme at this year’s Dell Technologies World conference, which ran in conjunction its Global Partner Summit, from April 28 to May 2 in Las Vegas.

At the event, the vendor unveiled the Dell Technologies Partner Program, promising greater ease in engaging VMware, Pivotal, SecureWorks and other business units under the Dell Technologies umbrella. The program simplified partners’ tier requirements by counting sales revenue from Dell Technologies subsidiaries toward tier credits. Dell also consolidated its partner training and certification requirements.

Scott Winslow, president and founder of Winslow Technology Group, an IT solutions and consulting firm headquartered in Waltham, Mass., said the new partner program made several improvements to the Dell EMC Partner Program it replaced. He added that the vendor is doing more to enable cross-selling.

“I think the big change for us, and we see it as a positive, is doing more about getting [Dell’s] strategically aligned businesses working together,” Winslow said.

Winslow Technology Group has ramped up its cross-selling engagements as Dell builds tighter integrations between its business units. “We were doing some VMware business [before], but now we are doing a lot more VMware business,” Winslow said. The company is also doing more business with SecureWorks, Dell’s managed security services company.

“We see [Dell Technologies subsidiaries] sales teams working together a lot more closely than they have been in the past. … I would say we are doing more cross-selling, more collaboration … and coming up with solutions for customers that are more comprehensive,” he said.

More work to be done

Even as Dell takes bold steps to unify its various business units for partners, the company recognizes more work is needed. Cook said the vendor continues to focus on creating a simpler operating experience.

At the 2019 Global Partner Summit, Dell senior vice president of global partner strategy, programs and operations, Darren Sullivan, highlighted ways in which the vendor is streamlining channel businesses processes. Initiatives included new investments in automation as well as more integration between Dell’s business lines.

Winslow said he is optimistic that the vendor is moving in the right direction. He acknowledged that complexity remains.

“The nirvana would be one partner portal, one deal [registration] page, one partner program for all” Dell Technologies subsidiaries, Winslow said. “They’re not there yet, but they are taking steps toward unifying these … disparate strategically aligned businesses to be more ‘the power of one.’ “

June 28, 2019  3:50 PM

Armorblox takes NLU email security software to the channel

Spencer Smith Spencer Smith Profile: Spencer Smith
Channel partners, Email security, Managed security services, MSSP, Partner programs

Startup Armorblox is looking to carve out a space in the email security software market with the help of channel partners.

The company, based in Cupertino, Calif., touts its platform’s use of natural language understanding (NLU) as its key differentiator among competitors. Armorblox formalized its inaugural partner program last week, overseen by senior vice president of sales and channel Brian Harmon, who joined Armorblox in March. Harmon said the platform’s NLU capabilities have sparked the interest of managed security service providers (MSSPs).

“Many of [the MSSPs] want to understand how they can support multiple customers and … manage their email security and data security as well as document management platforms,” Harmon said.

Natural language understanding in email security software

While Armorblox follows the same metadata-driven approach of its competitors, Harmon said the platform’s natural language processing and deep learning capabilities go beyond email security at the contextual level. The technology drills into communications to determine “what messages are intended for, what their content is all about — the who, what, when, where and why.”

“The NLU component is absolutely the game-changing technology we are bringing to the market. That is the core of what we do,” he said.

One way Armorblox detects threats is by building profiles of employees’ writing styles. If the platform sees a suspicious aberration in how an employee typically composes emails, Armorblox can trigger an alert. The alerts can be configured to go to security operations centers or users for verification. The platform can also quarantine messages for further examination, Harmon said.

In addition to email, Armorblox has created integrations with Slack, Office 365 and other messaging platforms, as well as document management systems. “We are taking a look at other messaging and human-to-human communication … as a threat vector for attackers to go after,” he said.

Commitment to channel sales

In addition to MSSPs, the Armorblox partner program targets value-added resellers and distributors. The program features two tiers, Preferred and Premier, and provides partners with support, training and preferred pricing.

Although Armorblox has a direct sales force, Harmon said he and his reps have been firmly committed to the channel model from the start. “We will never compete with a partner and take a deal direct,” he said, adding that Armorblox will reward partners who register the most opportunities.

The company is currently working with about 12 partners in the U.S. “On the [partner] recruitment side, I am not looking to create a huge … ecosystem. I want very specific targeted partners in each region that are specialists in their area [and] are bringing innovation into their market,” he said.

Harmon said Armorblox will expand its partnering efforts outside the U.S. on an opportunistic basis.

“As we expand and grow … I will expand the program to match that,” he said.


June 17, 2019  5:18 PM

Titus data classification software now channel-exclusive offering

John Moore John Moore Profile: John Moore
Channel, cybersecurity, MSP, Partner programs, VARs

Titus, a data classification software vendor based in Ottawa, today launched a new partner program and moved to a 100% channel model to fuel the company’s growth.

Integration with other security products is an important part of the Titus strategy. The company’s products use machine learning algorithms to automate the identification and classification of data. This task comes at the front end of broader security engagements, which makes Titus software “the tip of the spear” for other security offerings such as cloud access security brokers (CASBs), data loss prevention (DLP) systems and next-generation firewalls, according to Mike Kuehn, chief revenue officer at Titus.

Specifically, Titus data classification products integrate with Netskope’s CASB offering, Forcepoint’s DLP suite and Palo Alto Networks firewalls among other solutions. Titus aims to work with its technology allies’ channels as well as their products.

“Palo Alto Networks only sells through partners,” Kuehn noted. “By injecting our technology into that partner community, they can provide an enhanced solution for their sales and existing customers.”

Titus data classification and the channel

Although Titus previously worked with channel firms, the data classification software company’s approach was more opportunistic and lacked a focus on partner enablement, Kuehn said. The new channel initiative, however, provides self-paced certification programs with sales and technical modules, a partner portal and 30 points of margin protection for Elite-level partners that register Titus data classification opportunities. The vendor is also putting more pre-sales engineering resources in the field to support partners.

The 100% channel approach goes beyond the go-to-market strategy to include other facets of the company, from product engineering to support, Kuehn said.

“If you’re not all in on working with the channel … as an organization, it is really difficult to build an effective program in the field.”

Partner focus

Kuehn said Titus works with value-added resellers (VARs) that sell security offerings, VARs with cloud practices that need to protect customer data migrating to the cloud, managed service providers and global systems integrators. The latter, Kuehn said, help customers architected broader data protection strategies that begin with a data identification and classification phase.

Titus’ expectations for such partners include sales and technical investments and a willingness to work with Titus on a business plan to achieve a particular revenue target.

As a Blackstone Group portfolio company, Titus’ goal is to self-fund growth to the tune of 30%-plus per year. The company’s channel partner focus is “our means to accelerate growth,” Kuehn said.

June 14, 2019  9:08 PM

Sensu targets MSPs with multi-cloud monitoring, multi-tenancy

John Moore John Moore Profile: John Moore
Channel, Cloud Computing, Cloud monitoring, MSP, Multi-cloud

Sensu Inc. is finding an audience for its multi-cloud monitoring tool among managed service providers, which are integrating the product with their ticketing, configuration management database and event logging systems.

The Portland, Ore., company’s offering lets organizations monitor public clouds such as AWS, Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and Microsoft Azure and private clouds built on OpenStack, VMware and Xen. Sensu earlier this month launched a redesigned tool that offers multi-tenancy and support for container and Kubernetes workloads.

“We are seeing an uptick in popularity among MSPs,” noted Sean Porter, CTO at Sensu. “We know MSPs are dealing with a very wide breadth of technologies and we want to make sure we service that.”

Multi-cloud monitoring attracts MSP

8K Miles Software Services, an MSP and cloud consultancy based in Pleasanton, Calif., has been using Sensu for nearly two years. Sudish Mogli, the company’s CTO, said Sensu’s multi-cloud monitoring capabilities are a major attraction. 8K Miles focuses on healthcare and pharmaceutical companies that often inhabit more than one cloud.

Prior to selecting Sensu’s cloud-monitoring tool, 8K Miles said many of the tools the company evaluated were specific to a particular cloud. “We were looking for something that we could spin up in any cloud environment,” Mogli said. “Sensu met our requirement.”

Container support is another plus in Sensu’s favor, Mogli added. “We also have to look at the future in terms of how applications are being containerized” and designed for serverless architectures, he said.

Cloud monitoring tool integration

Sensu has become 8K Miles’ go-to public cloud and hybrid cloud monitoring tool, but it doesn’t exist in a vacuum. The company has built an automation that lets it take Sensu-generated alerts and automatically open tickets in service management tools such as ServiceNow, Mogli said. Other MSPs have also taken the approach of integrating cloud monitoring tools and service management systems.

Porter said that type of integration is prevalent among customers using Sensu’s multi-cloud monitoring tool. He said MSPs integrate Sensu into ticketing applications, CMDBs and event logging systems such as Splunk. Sensu can serve as a backbone and interconnection between an organization’s systems and data formats, he added.Cloud formation

8K Miles, meanwhile, plans to continue its association with Sensu’s multi-cloud monitoring tool. Mogli said other vendors’ monitoring products have come and gone over the past few years, but the company has been able to stay with Sensu because of the range of technologies it covers. “At the moment, I don’t see a gap,” he noted.

June 6, 2019  4:41 PM

Customers poised to adopt managed public cloud services

John Moore John Moore Profile: John Moore
Channel, Cloud Computing, Cloud migration

Managed public cloud services have seen a surge of investment among partners, with businesses fueled through organic growth or acquisition.

Companies selling such services provide a range of offerings including account configuration, security consulting, cost optimization and ongoing monitoring to name a few. Managed public cloud practices are proliferating around AWS, Google Cloud Platform and Microsoft Azure.

A report from Accenture, which offers managed public cloud services, suggests the industry’s investment stands to pay off. About 87% of the respondents to the professional service firm’s survey said they would  consider the use of managed cloud services. Accenture polled 200 senior IT professionals worldwide. The resulting study, Perspectives on Cloud Outcomes: Expectations vs. Reality, revealed a paucity of cloud expertise among organizations drives customer interest in managed cloud.

Augmenting cloud skills

Indeed, “access to the right skills” was the top benefit respondents cited with regard to managed cloud services, according to Accenture.

Siki Giunta, managing director and cloud strategy lead, journey to cloud, at Accenture, suggested the skills gap stems from organizations compelled to build a cloud center of excellence and institute DevOps at the same time they are  dealing with legacy applications.

“They don’t have the spectrum of skills” to span those initiatives, she said.

A managed public cloud provider can augment an enterprise’s skills. That could mean maintaining cloud-based applications, helping clients create a cloud operating model or providing security advice. A managed services provider (MSP) or systems integrator, for example, could take over the maintenance of legacy applications bound for the cloud, while the customer focuses on building the skills it needs to develop cloud-native applications, Giunta said.

Accenture, she added, is placing a particular emphasis on helping customers secure applications running in the cloud. In that capacity, the company serves as a “guide and watchdog,” making sure the client deploys the appropriate security controls.

Meeting cloud expectations

The prospects for managed services look upbeat, but not every cloud has a silver lining. MSPs should be prepared to work with customers that are somewhat dissatisfied with their cloud experiences. A bit more than a third of Accenture’s respondents said the cloud had completely met their expectations with regard to cost (34%), speed (36%), business enablement (35%) and service levels categories (34%), Accenture reported. The task ahead for service providers is dealing with the two-thirds of organizations yet to fully benefit from their cloud moves.

The unrealized promise of cost savings is one area of cloud disappointment.

Giunta said organizations thought they could move an application to the cloud and dollars would drop from their balance sheets. That benefit hasn’t always materialized, however.

The problem stems from enterprises treating the cloud as a technology transformation rather than a business transformation, noted Kishore Durg, cloud lead, growth and strategy, at Accenture. Getting business value out of the cloud requires decisive moves that yield significant cost savings — the ability to close an in-house data center, for instance. A less aggressive approach to cloud adoption leaves an organization with the expense of traditional IT while it invests in the cloud operating model.

Enterprises face the choice of either jumping into the cloud and getting all of the benefits or having a clear strategy for maintaining innovation, speed and a competitive edge while running dual operating and cost models, Giunta said.Cloud formation

Just migrating a couple of applications to the cloud won’t deliver the anticipated benefits, Durg suggested.

“If you do [cloud migration] piecemeal — application by application — you are not transforming how your business runs,” he said. “To really see the value, you need to have a business-value journey, not an app-to-the-cloud journey.”

Accenture’s research contains some implicit advice for other managed public cloud services firms: Encourage clients to think about the big picture rather than the migration of individual apps to the cloud.

May 31, 2019  2:41 PM

Early-stage companies sell to, partner with consultants

John Moore John Moore Profile: John Moore
Artifical Intelligence, Channel, IT Consulting, Software development, Startup

Early-stage companies are finding IT consulting firms can serve as a customer base and a sales conduit for their offerings.

A few of the startups selected for MIT Sloan CIO Symposium’s Innovation Showcase, held May 22 in Cambridge, Mass., are cultivating partnerships with well-established technology advisors. The annual Innovation Showcase highlights 10 companies deemed to represent the cream of the innovation crop for enterprise customers.

Project management firm finds consulting niche

Clubhouse, an Innovation Showcase finalist based in New York, offers a project management platform geared toward software development teams. Deloitte is among the startup’s customers.

“We find that IT consulting firms are a key and growing market segment for Clubhouse,” said Mitch Wainer, CMO at Clubhouse. “Forward-thinking IT consultants or agencies such as Deloitte use Clubhouse as their go-to project management tool for software development.”

Consultants using the project management product in-house may open sales opportunities with their clients.

“They will use Clubhouse for their clients’ projects as well as recommend it to their clients as a tool to adopt post project completion,” Wainer said.

Secure coding startup teams with consultants

Secure Code Warrior, a Boston company and showcase finalist, has also established alliances with consulting partners. The company, which offers a suite of educational secure coding tools, works with Accenture and Optiv, for example.

“We see them as strategic partners that can take our solution to a broader market,” said Matias Madou, co-founder and CTO at Secure Code Warrior.

The startup initially pursued direct sales. But Secure Code Warrior, having optimized its sales process over the last three years, is looking to partners for a boost.

“Now we feel that we can scale our sales by engaging with the strategic partners,” Madou said.

Enterprise AI company eyes channel partners

NLP Logix, a finalist based in Jacksonville, Fla., is taking a similar path. The company sells directly to customers due to the highly customized nature of the machine learning and intelligent automation solutions it provides for enterprise customers. The company, however, has developed a set of products in addition to its customized offerings.

“We are beginning to develop channel partners to distribute them,” said Samantha Hartman, director of marketing at NLP Logix.

Those products are Scribe Fusion, an AI-based OCR/ICR offering; PayPensity, a product for accounts receivable management, credit and debt recovery organizations; and Matchpoint, which automates workflow for recruiting teams.

Early-stage companies, in general, may first focus on direct sales to learn more about customer needs and buying patterns before turning over sales to channel partners. That said, some startups develop channel marketing strategies from the onset.

The rest of the field

Other startups featured in MIT Sloan’s top 10 include AllyO, a maker of AI-based recruiting software; Big Panda, an autonomous operations platform vendor; DeepBench, an expert sourcing platform; Elisify, an on-demand marketplace for financial data; Gradle, a build automation tool developer; Posh, a conversational AI platform; and Topos Labs, a text-mining software vendor.

This year’s Innovation Showcase focused on early-stage companies with 2018 revenue of less than $10 million. Other selection criteria included the availability of an enterprise IT product in the market, a sales motion targeting CIOs or corporate IT departments, the ability to demonstrate innovation, and the potential to improve a customer’s top and/or bottom lines.

May 29, 2019  9:52 PM

IBM puts an AI spin on partner lead sharing

Spencer Smith Spencer Smith Profile: Spencer Smith
Channel partners, IBM, IBM PartnerWorld, Sales

An IBM lead-sharing tool highlights how AI is making inroads in systems that facilitate partner engagement.

Launched in 2018, Smarter Cognitive Opportunity Recommendation Engine (SCORE) uses IBM cognitive computing to guide and expedite the lead-sharing process. So far, IBM’s software organizations have adopted SCORE. The system is expanding to IBM’s hardware business units, the company said. SCORE follows on the heels of IBM Business Partner Connect, a tool that uses Watson to help partners team up for customer opportunities.

“What [we are] trying to do … is make cognitive the epicenter of all our transformation initiatives, and we are starting here with SCORE,” said Mike Fino, COO of IBM Partner Ecosystem.

IBM had been focused on automating its lead-sharing engine for about two years, Fino said. “Up until we started with the SCORE effort, writing static programs or static algorithms didn’t lend themselves well to the lead-[sharing] environment, because it is such a fluid space,” he said. In late 2017, executives considered tapping into IBM cognitive technology, and, in doing so, improve the speed and quality of lead sharing.

Fino said IBM’s AI technology gives SCORE a powerful edge over traditional lead-sharing engines. “That is really the secret of what SCORE gives us, which is the ability to learn from every positive and negative decision or recommendation that we make, factor that [knowledge] into the next one, and have that be the living engine that we use to engage with our partners,” he said.

How SCORE makes recommendations

SCORE’s top priority was to establish a system that would “pass the right opportunities — in other words, the opportunities our business partners are most likely to win — to the right business partner … in a timely fashion,” said Alan Zwiren, cognitive and AI transformation manager, IBM partner ecosystem.

To determine the right IBM business partners, SCORE assesses partner firms against an array of attributes. Attributes can include the partner’s win rate, experience, geographical proximity to the prospect and competencies. Much of the information that SCORE uses is based on partners’ historical performance data but is extending to other data sources as well, Zwiren said. When SCORE generates a recommendation, it also gives users an explanation for how it came to its conclusions.

“We tried to provide explanations to show end users which key features of specific business partners are influencing the recommendation,” noted Oznur Alkan, research scientist at IBM Research.

A feedback loop, which collects feedback from IBM sales, business partners and other sources, lets SCORE continuously learn and improve its recommendations.

Zirwin added that SCORE evaluates the attributes used to rank partners on a monthly basis. “We look at many different dimensions … and each of these dimensions are weighed once a month automatically by SCORE to say, ‘Which is the most predictive [dimension] of a won deal?’ ” he said.

‘A North Star’ for IBM business partners

SCORE has proven valuable in two fundamental respects, Fino said. The first is for its assistance in getting IBM’s leads into the right partner hands. The second benefit is that it has helped incentivize certain behaviors among IBM business partners. Those behaviors can help partners improve their ranking within the engine.

“[We] are starting to see our partners focusing on the same things that we believe are important to not only help them improve their status, but … we are seeing more and more partners use [SCORE] as a bit of a North Star to drive their enablement efforts,” Fino said.

More partner tools that use IBM cognitive computing are on the horizon. In addition to SCORE and IBM Business Partner Connect, Fino said his team is developing a tool that uses AI to help partners with cross-selling by recommending adjacent offerings.

“I think this is really just the beginning,” he said.

May 20, 2019  5:22 PM

SADA Systems taps Google Cloud solutions lead Miles Ward as CTO

John Moore John Moore Profile: John Moore
Channel, CIO/CTO, Google Cloud Platform, hiring, IT Consulting

When SADA Systems hired Miles Ward as CTO, his gear arrived at the Los Angeles-based cloud technology consultancy before he did.

Ward, formerly director and global lead for solutions at Google Cloud, officially joined SADA Systems on May 20. But the equipment he ordered to build an Anthos demonstration machine arrived about two weeks ago. Anthos, an application management platform that Google unveiled last month, lets organizations create applications that run unmodified across Google Cloud, third-party clouds and on-premises hardware.

“Anthos is an incredible opportunity,” Ward said, perhaps explaining his early start.

The Anthos demo box he’s creating is not a promotional stunt, Ward contended.  The machine will let SADA Systems “bring a chunk of the cloud” to customers, allowing them to deploy containers and manage services. “I could leave it at an office and it would work and Google would patch it remotely and it would load balance between the cloud and [on-premises hardware],” he noted.

Ward sees an overarching opportunity to span the gap and reduce the friction between public clouds and the enterprise data center. Technology, he said, is transitioning to the intercloud, which will “blur the line between on-premises infrastructure and cloud infrastructure.” The intercloud concept envisions a cloud of clouds, following the precedent of the internet becoming a network of networks.

The corporate generation gap

The generation gap — as applied to enterprises — also opens an opportunity for SADA Systems, according to Ward. He said it’s possible to profile companies that are 5, 15 or 100 years old in the same way assumptions can be made about Generation X and millennials.

Companies within a particular age group “generally have some consistent way they approach technology,” Ward noted. He suggested younger companies may be adept at building a technology stack, but may struggle with other aspects of running a business. On the other hand, older firms may excel when it comes to building a strong balance sheet, but struggle with digital adoption.

SADA is in a position to “take a little of the experience from the digital natives and the most sophisticated technology consumers and bring it back to the [longer-established] businesses that are the most successful business operators in the world,” Ward explained. “Some of that bridging is going to be important.”

Keeping legacy in the loop

SADA Systems also stands to help its customers bridge the gap between legacy technologies and modern cloud-based platforms, Ward noted. The company’s differentiator, he said, is not the ability to read the “shiny and easy to understand manual for new technology,” but rather the capacity to connect the new with the old.Cloud formation

The mix of cloud, on-premises gear, decades-old systems and emerging technologies make for a varied technology environment. SADA’s objective is to work with clients on their complex topologies and find ways to take advantage of Google Cloud services, Ward said.

May 13, 2019  4:14 PM

Cybersecurity issues top list of customer concerns

John Moore John Moore Profile: John Moore
Channel, cybersecurity, Digital initiatives, Enterprise Security, Midmarket security, Ransomware

Your customers likely face a range of IT challenges, but cybersecurity issues may be their leading pain point.

A study released today from Insight Enterprises Inc., which polled 400 IT professionals, identified security as the main hurdle for digital innovation, the top data management concern and the biggest IT problem, overall. The results underscore the pressure on channel companies to address IT security.

Forty-eight percent of the Insight survey respondents ranked data security and privacy as their most pressing digital innovation challenge, topping upfront cost and expertise in new technology.

Data security

Security is also top-of-mind when it comes to the exploding volume of data customers must manage. In the Insight survey, 43% of the respondents cited “ensuring the security of data in dispersed environments” as their top challenge over the next three to five years in handling data growth. Upgrading data protection and recovery ranked second, with 41% of the respondents identifying that concern.

And more than half of the respondents identified cybersecurity issues as their main IT challenge and the “top pain point keeping them up at night.”

Insight, an IT solutions provider based in Tempe, Ariz., polled IT professionals at organizations ranging from 1,000 to more than 5,000 employees.

Additional data on cybersecurity issues comes from RSM US, the Chicago-based U.S. member of RSM International, a network of independent audit, tax and consulting firms. RSM US, working with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, commissioned the Harris Poll to survey 700 middle-market executives. Fifty-five percent of the survey takers said they believe a cyberattack on their data or systems is likely this year. That’s an uptick from the previous year’s survey in which 47% of those polled viewed cyberattacks as likely to occur in 2018.

“Larger middle market organizations continue to be most at risk for cybercrime, as many have high volumes of valuable data but don’t have the robust security resources of their large-cap peers, making them exceedingly attractive to cybercriminals,” RSM US noted.

Attack vectors

Regarding attack vectors, social engineering and ransomware lead the list of mid-market cybersecurity issues. According to the RSM US survey, published earlier this month, 42% of middle-market executives reported “social engineering attempts on their organizations from outside parties.”

In addition, 20% of the executives said they had experienced a ransomware attack, while 35% of those polled said they know of someone who had been subject to ransomware.

The recognition of cybersecurity as a general threat and a hindrance to strategic initiatives suggests channel companies should be making security a core part of their portfolio of offerings.  Companies lacking the resources to build a practice in this field should at least consider finding a partner that can provide cybersecurity services.

May 7, 2019  9:14 PM

Dell Boomi forges ahead under Dell Technologies Partner Program

Spencer Smith Spencer Smith Profile: Spencer Smith
Boomi, Channel partners, Cloud integration, Dell, Partner programs

Dell Boomi said it will continue growing its partner program under the new Dell Technologies Partner Program.

The cloud integration platform vendor is one of the many Dell subsidiaries now housed within the Dell Technologies Partner Program, launched last week at the Dell Technologies World 2019 conference. Dell executives said the new program aims to enable channel firms to do business across Dell-owned companies and no plans are in play to shutter any of the subsidiaries’ legacy partner programs. Instead, those programs will continue to operate autonomously while functioning as part of the Dell Technologies Partner Program framework. The Dell Boomi partner program today engages about 300 firms worldwide, including resellers, referral partners, managed service providers, systems integrators, ISVs and OEMs.

“[About] 70% of our business is through our channel. That is high. We depend on working with those partners,” said David Tavolaro, vice president of global business development at Dell Boomi, in an interview.

Dell Technologies Partner Program sparks new relationships

Tavolaro said the Dell Technologies Partner Program has given Dell Boomi an opportunity to sign up new partners. Dell’s president of global channels, OEM and IoT solutions, Joyce Mullen, is helping Dell Boomi identify potential channel alliances.

“We are going to collectively look at the [channel companies] that we think would be good partners for Boomi, and they will just basically be assumed into Boomi’s program [and] have all the same training, benefits and requirements … within the program,” Tavolaro said.

Dell Boomi today is evaluating partners in the Dell Technology Program’s top tiers, Titanium and Titanium Black. The company will eventually expand to other tiers, he noted.

Dell Boomi partner program updates ahead

Looking ahead, he said Dell Boomi’s top challenge is having enough IT professionals certified on the Boomi platform. “Part of our responsibility is to make sure … [there are] enough people that are experts at implementing Boomi,” Tavolaro said.

Dell Boomi provides free online training for developer, architect and administrator certifications. The company last year marked a milestone of having 10,000 professionals certified.

“We want to have 15,000 certified people, and we hear [the need for certified Boomi professionals] in the market all the time,” he said.

As for the Dell Boomi partner program, Tavolaro said the company will introduce better transparency to give partners insight into their standing within the program. Additionally, the program will make it easier to access training, sales and support information. He said a revamped Dell Boomi partner program is slated to launch this year.

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