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A wise man (I think it was Homer Simpson) once applied the principles of quicksand to the workplace to say, “Don’t struggle; you’ll only sink faster.”
While that may sound negative, there’s an element of good sense about it. Installing a new storage array for your clients should be simple. If it’s not, and you struggle with your implementation, continuing to struggle with the same complicated array for other customers is only going to damage your reputation, push you over your deadlines and eat into your profits.
That’s why simplicity is so important when choosing which storage arrays to include in your portfolio – and why EMC has built its new Unity midrange storage platform with simplicity front of mind. EMC believes that there are four questions that resellers should ask their vendors to make sure that they get the best solution for them and their customers.
How simple is it to buy?
Endless lists of optional software, hardware, apps and features that are all priced separately not only make provisioning unnecessarily hard for resellers, they also confuse their customers, prolonging the sales process as each option is discussed and assessed.
Unity has a streamlined ordering process that takes the strain off EMC’s partner community. It also gives resellers an easily comprehensible itemization to share with their customers smoothing the process to inking a deal.
How simple is it to set up?
Nobody wants to take inordinate amounts of time to install and configure an array either that cuts into production time. The longer and more complicated the process is, the more opportunity there is for things to go wrong.
Unity not only has a small form factor so that denser storage can be packed into a smaller space, it’s also possible to rack and stack (snap-in rails) in minutes. And it’s intuitive set-up wizard means that it can take as little as 15 minutes to configure.
How simple is it to use?
Customer loyalty is all about a great experience for your end users throughout the lifecycle of the products that you sell them. The simpler a product is to use, the better the experience - and the fewer times the customer needs to call you for support!
Unity’s intuitive and easy to navigate management interface has been independently assessed byMadPow as one of the simplest to use on the market today. Its native integration with VMware and Microsoft means that customers can quickly and seamlessly integrate with these familiar environments. Resellers who want to show their customers just how easy it is to use Unity can even show them theUnity Simulator so they can experience it for themselves.
How simple is it to support?
Upgrades, replacement parts, and wear and tear mean that even the simplest of systems need support sometimes. However, the more options there are for remote monitoring and proactive diagnostics, the less of a drain supporting a product is going to be and the more time resellers can spend adding value.
Unity includes Proactive Assist, which is a built-in ecosystem that helps to identify and correct issues before the end-user customer is even aware that they exist. And Unity customers have the option to implement CloudIQ – a no-cost cloud management analytics solution for health-based reporting and remediation support.
Storage doesn’t have to be hard – you just need to ask the right questions and choose a product that your customers will love. What do you look for in a storage vendor partner? Why not tell us in the comments.
Kristine Cornwall is Director of Channel Marketing, Core Technologies, EMC