On The Record


  • Partners that have a single supplier face a significant revenue risk in the event that supplier decides to sell off its data center assets to a company that is either unfriendly toward the channel or just doesn't understand it.

  • With news of Ingram Micro's plans to become part of China-based HNA Group comes speculation over what it means to the industry, government contracts serviced via Ingram, and to the distribution business as a whole.

  • The Strategic Service Provider model represents solution providers who become strategic partners to customers by recommending and implementing everything from communication providers to which application, platform and hardware providers to depend on.

  • The latest move to sell the Surface Pro through HP and Dell Direct sales teams, and the lack of communication from Microsoft, has left the channel wondering just what the big secret is when it comes Microsoft and its tablet?

  • The reality is that the cloud model, while exciting and a better place to be over the long term, is not going to be the only way to deploy IT for a very long time.

  • Making it happen in the channel is about relationships. It's earned through hard work, a lot of airport food and time away from home.

  • Channel Chiefs, the really good ones, are crucial to the success of the tech industry, and often don't get the credit they deserve.

  • If you are running a solution provider business today that is not driving 51 percent of profit from the service side of the house, you need to take a hard look at your business and ask how you are going to get there.

  • Given the amount of time people already spend staring at mobile devices, do we really need light bulbs with their own IP addresses so that we can manage them from our smartphones?

  • Cisco is a hardware company that is facing a software challenge as the move toward a software-defined network strikes at the heart of its business model.

  • Building and managing a successful IT channel is hard. Here are the top priorities partners should focus on to determine a vendor's commitment, and suppliers can use to assess their own programs.
  • For channel partners that represent a single vendor in the market in any technology segment, if that vendor falls into a particularly difficult situation, the partner is at risk as well.
  • For partners on the fence about the Meg Whitman era at HP, it's time to start feeling confident about the company's $112 billion commitment to solution providers.
  • When it comes to what happens in the field, solution providers need engagement with partner account managers that are focused on helping partners go to market together.

  • Because the technology market is continually changing, there is no perfect channel for very long. But there is a way to get very close to one, and it requires CEO leadership, a team of loyal executives that believe in the goal, and a commitment to take feedback from the field and build a business that is easier to work with.

  • Now comes the hard part for Michael Dell. With the yearlong battle behind him to take Dell private, the company founder now faces the biggest business challenge of his lifetime.

  • As the move to more toward managed services, off-premises private cloud and, ultimately, to public cloud continues, the criteria vendors will use to choose channel partners will change.

  • Does it make sense for solution providers to resell the Amazon cloud? Here a few important questions you have to ask in order to make the decision to put the livelihood of your customers' business on the Amazon cloud.

  • Unlike the Carly Fiorina and Leo Apotheker stewardships, current HP CEO Meg Whitman has the right attitude for driving channel growth.

  • The time is now for the channel to reap the rewards of deploying cloud services. But while the key attribute to capitalizing on past tech trends were technical skills, the future in the cloud is all about sales and marketing.

  • The channel has changed quite a bit in the last decade. Here are three key elements to examine when evaluating potential vendor partners.

  • Dell's recent news that it's driving toward a potential private equity deal sounds like a good thing.

  • Microsoft may not be any competition for Apple in the tablet market, but in the enterprise, Windows-based tablets will do well.

  • Direct market resellers are going to be an extinct species in five years.

  • Microsoft should put a plan in place to drive its tablet through solution providers in the business marketplace.

  • Microsoft's decision to build its own tablet and sell it directly marks a sea change in IT and an admission that the market has shifted.

  • For solution partners young and old, there is a unique opportunity to gauge the new supplier base and capitalize on the need by those vendors to build channel relationships and sales.

  • Position marketing will become more prevalent due to the loss of brand identity to the end user as a result of the cloud.

  • The future of computing is increasingly going to experience a bigger effort to transfer costs up the sales chain.

  • Less than four months on the job, HP CEO Meg Whitman has brought stability and solid management to a company enormously important to the channel, but her job is far from over.

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