Hybrid Cloud Fast Tracks Put Ingram Micro Partners On The Road To Success
The distributor’s Hybrid Cloud Fast Tracks are designed to connect partners with experts in its Data Center and Hybrid Cloud Center of Excellence to identify new avenues of opportunity and speed up conversations with customers.
Ingram Micro knows that solution providers often have difficulty finding the information they need and are looking for a one-stop shop. Enter the distributor’s Data Center and Hybrid Cloud Center of Excellence.
Ingram Micro launched its Data Center and Hybrid Cloud Center of Excellence in 2022 through a collaboration of subject-matter experts designed to support solution providers in their journeys to expand and strengthen their data center and hybrid cloud practices. It’s a central location for partners to be able to gather information around thought leadership, strategy-building with Ingram Micro’s technology consultants and general services practices.
“It gives an incentive to them and to their sellers to be able to really drive new technology trend conversations with their end users so that they don’t leave money on the table,” Cheryl Rang, executive director of Advanced Solutions for Ingram Micro, told CRN.
Meanwhile, the Ingram Micro Advanced Solutions Integration Lab, which launched in August, is a controlled environment where partners can explore, configure and test multivendor stacks to show how they work together to build an ideal solution. The lab allows partners to see demonstrations, train their sales and technical teams and illustrate proofs of concept to end users.
And to boost partners’ ability to build these ideal solutions, the Center of Excellence team in August launched a series of hybrid cloud partner Fast Tracks, which are partner enablement programs designed to connect solution providers with experts in the Data Center and Hybrid Cloud Center of Excellence. Together, they will identify opportunities with a focus on different categories such as hybrid and multi-cloud solutions, digital workspace and application modernization.
“We did a lot of research before we launched this,” Rang said. “We really wanted to make sure that we weren’t building and just assuming that was what was going to be important to partners. The three that we started with—application modernization, digital workspace and multi-cloud solutions—were ones that we continuously hear partners talk about.”
Ke’Airra Speigner, account manager at Lanham, Md.-based NGEN, an honoree on CRN’s 2023 MSP 500, had a chance to review and go through a few of the modules in August and believes her team will benefit from the hybrid cloud solutions as well as the digital workspace and the application modernization solutions.
“How I want to introduce it to my team is with the hybrid cloud solution because we have a lot of clients that want to do cloud migrations,” she told CRN. “We do have a team of experts, but the client interest is growing and we need more people.”
As NGEN’s internal engineers are out in the fi eld they can use these modules to train customers in the cloud, she said.
“They’re very easy to use,” she said. “They’re user-friendly, and I like how the modules start from the very beginning breaking down what the cloud is. It’s very thorough, which I appreciate.”
Partners receive five steps of enablement throughout each track and then graduate with a badge they can then use as points for either free services or giveaways.
Vendors also are getting involved in the Fast Tracks, as a hybrid cloud solution typically involves six or more manufacturers, according to Rang.
“What we’ve really been focused on with the partners is if you’re only going in there with one [vendor], then you’re leaving five on the table, and someone else is going to come in and sell those five other vendor solutions,” she said. “If you know how to have that conversation with your customers, then you can bring Ingram Micro in to help you do the services behind it and work closely with our services division on how we go out and implement those solutions.”
There’s an educational aspect to it as well as enablement and a virtualization lab. Partners can even test and play with the technology and services before they deploy them and bring them into their solutions stack.
“It creates that life-cycle view for an easy access, easy to-use and easy-to-maneuver partner point of view,” she said. “Our goal really is to say, ‘You can have a broader conversation, and here’s how you get started.’”