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Pax8 Platform Redesign A Hit With Partners

When a partner searches for a vendor now, the search also retrieves contextual information around that vendor’s product, including catalogs, quotes, subscriptions and usage data, says Pax8 CTO Michael Dehmlow.

Born-in-the-cloud distributor Pax8 launched a redesign of its user interface that not only speeds up all facets of the experience, but also includes an open-text search bar as well as insight into product usage in a single dashboard.

Pax8 CTO Michael Dehmlow said the company’s goal is to take the buying experience for partners, simplify it, and make it consumable for them. There is a tendency to focus too much on “the technical” when designing a platform for users, according to Dehmlow. The update is designed to give Pax8 customers a “consumer-grade” user experience as well, he said.

“With this latest release to the console, we’ve tried to look at the entire experience and make it very fast, make it very frictionless, and really also make it, for lack of a better term, ‘beautiful’—pleasing to look at and intuitive,” he told CRN during XChange 2019, being held this week in Devner.

The ideas for the upgrades came from listening to the company’s MSP partners and asking them what needed to be improved, Dehmlow said.

“We have literally thousands of conversations every week with them,” he said. “Whether it’s through sales, support, through service delivery channels, all of these different channels give direct feedback right into our development process.”

Now when a partner searches for a vendor, the search also retrieves contextual information around that vendor’s product, including catalogs, quotes, subscriptions and usage data, he said.

“I can see they have 13 subscriptions with me. I’ve got access to their data. I just pulled all their usage so this is representing tens of thousands of line items,” Dehmlow said. “So much more visibility. So much more intuitive.”

Pax8 Chief Channel Officer Ryan Walsh said as the company is introducing new vendors and new products, the complexity for the partner to find what they need is increased.

“If you don’t make sure that you are constantly looking for ‘easy’ and a way to find information quickly, you could end up working against yourself—meaning when I drop a new trending product in that partners are telling us about you might not find it,” he said. “Having dealt with catalogs before, that can easily happen.”

Daniel Johnson, president of machineLogic, a greater Devner area solution provider and a Gold level Microsoft partner who credits part of his success to Pax8 and the value-add it has brought to his business, said the new user interface has been a hit with his employees.

“We have a number of individuals in our company using the Pax8 command console,” he said. “It directly integrates and synchronizes with our PSA tool, Autotask, so that really streamlines our ability to deploy licenses when we need them to ensure our billing is accurate. The enhancements that they have put in to make sure we have product information, even some basic product training for our techs and our team members, it’s really a full-featured type of interface.”

Brian Brammeier, CEO of HigherGround Managed Services, Rolling Meadows, Ill., said while he is looking forward to digging into the new dashboard and visibility, he loves the new search function.

“It helps me use the application a lot faster. I noticed it right away,’ he said. “It was the first thing I saw. It just made it easier for us to navigate. We could pull data faster and noticed speed was faster right away.”

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