CRN Exclusive: Broadvoice Launches Public Sector Partner Program As Gov, Edu Go 'Cloud-First'

Cloud communications provider Broadvoice is introducing a brand-new partner program specifically aimed at helping the channel score business with government, education, and nonprofit organizations.

The Public Sector Partner Program marries Broadvoice's existing expertise in serving the public sector with new resources that partners need to address the requirements of these customers, said Rebecca Rosen, Broadvoice's vice president of marketing and owner of the new partner program.

Broadvoice generates about 90 percent of its revenue from the channel today and largely targets the small-to-midsized market. The company wants to help its partner base sell cloud-based solutions to more public sector end customers, which is the largest vertical in the U.S, Tessley Smith, vice president of channel for Broadvoice, told CRN.

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"There's a lot of trepidation out there because this market is complex," Smith said. "We've really put a methodology behind [the program] so we can train our partners on qualified opportunities."

The timing is right for the program, Rosen said, because many recent mandates and regulations are pushing government agencies to adopt a cloud-first approach.

"It's presenting an opportunity for channel partners to do some significant cloud services business in a vertical that's growing," she said.

The program will help partners reach public sector customers through two different approaches. The first, through Broadvoice’s authorized vendor status with the National Association for Safe Procurement Officers (NASPO) ValuePoint, a cooperative purchasing program that some state agencies use to directly purchase IT solutions at a competitive price, skipping the typical RFP bidding process.

This approach helps remove some of the barriers to entry into the public sector space for channel partners, Rosen explained.

The second path lets partners pursue the public sector market through the Broadvoice Direct Government Sales Program, which is designed for competitive bids, according to the Los Angeles-based provider.

Through the new program, partners will have access to marketing collateral targeted to public sector buyers, RFP tools and support, lead sharing, and technical response assistance from Broadvoice.

Partners will also benefit from specific training on public sector agency needs; a plus for any partner who hasn't previously sold to government, education or nonprofit customers, Rosen said.

Public sector customers purchasing through a channel partner will have a dedicated Broadvoice government specialist that will help coordinate all aspects of their purchase, the company said.

The Public Sector program, if successful, will be a launching pad for additional vertical-focused partner programs in other markets that partners want to enter, Rosen said.

"We believe that aligning ourselves vertically with the appropriate solutions will be a path forward for partners."