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You are growing the partner base by 25 percent and the direct sales force by 25 percent. Talk about the drive to build both those sales forces.
In my head, those are two different issues. We are under covered and under served in our core target markets. So when you look at our direct sales force, these guys out here, these guys are calling on, you go out here and say who do you call on? You are going to find that every company you will have heard of, every company.
Now if you look at all of the companies that you haven't heard of in this city within 50 square miles, more than likely we are not calling on them, We can't get there. And we have a large field force.
But because we have multiple specializations, because we then have to have key account directors. It is funny you support them with presale and technical people and you'd be amazed how you don't cover as many accounts as you would think a (sales) force of that size would cover. So for us we have to add. If we were to get direct to the top 2,000 accounts around the planet, not the US, the planet, we'd be doing something great.
In fact, I am about to leave here and go to another group of 25 customers. And I will be going to those biggest accounts in the city. I did yesterday and will do it again today. Common theme: you guys (at Oracle) have great technology. So Oracle is viewed as having the best stuff in the industry. Point two: People like our people. People think we don't bring enough resources to engage them in a strategic level.
So this problem for us in the big accounts - or opportunity might be a better word for it. I use this example. I tell our guys all the time: when I started out in the IT industry there were things like PDP-11s and VAXes (minicomputers). This (iPhone) is a VAX. More powerful than a VAX. There are going to be 2 billion of these things running around the planet. Once you get past terabyte, you get get to pedabyte.Once you get past pedabyte you get Exabyte. Once you get past Exabyte you get to Zetabyte. There is going to be 70 Zetabytes of data on the planet, 2 billion VAXes banging on 70 Zetabytes, 1.3 billion mobile workers running around the planet expecting to be able to get whatever data they want, whenever they want.
IT budgets are flat. You have got CEOs saying listen get me into ecommerce. Get me into social networking. Get me into mobility. Get me in so I can sell more stuff. With a flat (IT) budget. So CIOs look at us and go- 'Well how can you help me strategically? How can you help me take costs out? How can you help me innovate? How do you help me achieve this? Businesses have a business strategy. They have got a business model. They align their processes to the business model. They align their applications to the processes. We can do both: we can help them take costs out and we can help them go innovate.
Now to do that we have to bring a certain level of strategic alignment to those customers. So for us we need more people. So when somebody says - You have got this big group of people why don't you cover all these accounts yourself? We can't.
Because by the way it is not just numbers, I have got to find trained people that can do the job. So it isn't just go out here on Madison Avenue (and yell) 'Anybody want to go cover some accounts?' and everybody shows up.
So for us it is both. We want to simultaneously grow this direct organization and grow our channel breadth and depth.
When you take a look at other large companies that are like yours, they tend to have some element of their channel that is almost 100 percent dedicated to them. Are you expecting to get that?
I think we could. And you know -- no matter where I have been -- I have never preached exclusivity.
But it happens naturally to some degree.
And it happens for two reasons: the channel likes predictability. The channel likes consistency. But let me add to that: the channel wants predictability and consistency and so do we. And so when you get down a path that says the channel wants to be predictable.
But if you are going to bring two or three vendors to the party and we are not going to know which way you are going to go that is not good for us either. So it is like any relationship. Every relationship wants predictability. No matter what it is: Personal relationship. Business relationship. I want to know.
Therefore it drives this alignment you describe. You can have clarity and rigor in a partner that has got multiple lines they cover but they can have people dedicated to your line. They can have people that you can count on. Maybe that organization has multiple of these. But even when the partner had multiple things I knew what team was aligned to me and I could bank on them. I could fund them. I could train them. And frankly when they say well you know I am representing you and two or three others. Then I'll say listen I think I'll train the guys that are dedicated to me first because I can predict their behavior.
So I don't think it has to be a partner that is always exclusive but I think that within the partner having a group that is predictable, consistent (and) that I can bank on is a big deal.
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