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The Next Normal - A Focus on Partner Engagement

The Next Normal
A Focus on Partner Engagement


The coronavirus outbreak has impacted nearly every aspect of the global economy, from supply chains to air travel to tourism. And the IT industry is feeling the effects as well.

Enterprises across many major vertical industries will cut IT spending in the coming quarters and year as revenue shortfalls limit their ability to refresh systems and fund digital transformation initiatives. IDC just cut its IT spending forecast for 2020, expecting to see a “significant slowdown” in hardware along with software and services spending as the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread across the globe. But not all technology vendors are affected equally.  One thing is certain; entire industries will change dramatically which will have a significant effect on the demand for technology products and services and the technology channels.

Technology vendors must rapidly overhaul their channel programs and services to navigate through the current crisis and prepare for the “new abnormal” together with their channel partners Channel2GO is ready to assist with a suite of Rapid Response Services. Here is how it works:

  1. Assess

The first step is a thorough assessment of how (and how much) external and internal business and channel conditions have changed:

  1. Determine how much the revenue stream with the current client base in each vertical market is affected
  2. Identify the size and scope of shifts in demand for individual solutions and/or services
  3. Identify the business and financial condition of your partner base (focus on the top 10%)
  4. What are current/interim steps you company is taking at the corporate level?
  5. How does this affect your partner base?
  6. Have you made interim changes to partner programs, goal attainment, financing?
  7. Have you made any changes channel communications (and comms platforms)?
  8. How have key competitors tackled the current health and economic crises?

Deliverables: Channel2GO to provide a written assessment and observations to channel management 3 - 4 weeks from project initiation

  1. Recalibrate

Having completed the Assessment and with an understanding of a (phased) corporate approach to emerge from the current downturn and embark on a set of new corporate initiatives, Channel2GO will work closely with the channel team to:

  1. Review new corporate strategies and initiatives and assess how they will affect channel partner and their performance
  2. Survey the current partner base to evaluate how partners have addressed current challenges, changed business models, and addressed the financial crisis
  3. Profile and rank the partner base to determine how the channel eco structure has been impacted, identify partners that are no longer viable for your business and determine how to “fill the gaps” in your partner eco structure
  4. Develop new channel strategies and programs to support corporate objectives and your partner base
  5. Develop and implement a channel communications plan to announce new channel programs and support the partner base

Deliverables: Provide partner assessments and profiles and recommendations regarding necessary adjustments to the partner eco structure. Jointly develop new channel strategies and programs. Develop an effective partner communications plan to support your partner base. Duration: 60 – 90 days.

  1. Measure and Adjust

General Eisenhower once remarked: “Plans are worthless, but planning is everything”. The plans you make during a crisis often require almost immediate adjustments when reality interferes with the plan. During Phase 3, Channel2GO will help the channel team to:

  1. Develop and report on specific channel KPI’s to measure the result of new programs, initiatives, and the impact on partner performance
  2. Recommend channel program and communication revisions as required. Support the channel team with the finetuning of channel programs and initiatives and continue to report KPI’s

Deliverables: Channel KPI’s and reporting designed to track the impact of channel initiatives and partner performance. Recommendations for ongoing partner program revisions and channel communications. Duration: 60 – 90 days.