‘We’re Taking The Gloves Off’: Dell Sales Boss Talks New Strategy To Take Share
“We’re taking the gloves off. We’re pleased with our partnerships around the world. They’re pleased with what they’re doing with Dell. They love our portfolio. They love the fact that they can do client service, storage, backup, edge, multi-cloud, cyber resiliency, they love the story,” Dell Technologies President of Global Sales and Customer Operations Bill Scannell tells CRN. “We’re a market leader, but there’s a whole bunch more to go get.”
Dell Technologies’ shift in how it approaches storage sales is meant to show partners that the company which gave birth to the direct-to-consumer PC sales model is serious about doing business through the channel.
“Our partners keep saying they want better collaboration with us, better predictability, better teaming. And we’re doing that, and the feedback has been awesome,” Dell Technologies President of Global Sales and Customer Operations Bill Scannell (pictured) told CRN. “This partner-first strategy for storage intensifies our focus on selling storage through our partners and doubles down on our commitment to our partners.”
Starting this past Monday, Dell said it would compensate its core sales teams more if they move storage deals through a partner of record. In addition, the company quadrupled the number of eligible partners for Dell’s sales teams to target and handed them a directive to take share from rivals.
“We’re taking the gloves off. We’re pleased with our partnerships around the world. They’re pleased with what they’re doing with Dell. They love our portfolio. They love the fact that they can do client service, storage, backup, edge, multi-cloud, cyber resiliency. They love the story,” he said. “We’re a market leader, but there’s a whole bunch more to go get.”
The company holds the No. 1 spot with 31.5 percent market share among enterprise storage and is in the top spot with 11.2 percent share in storage software.
Dell sales teams are now going to proactively bring more partners into accounts, incented by a 1.1X multiplier, according to a memo posted to TheLayoff. Sources have told CRN that Scannell wrote the memo, but when reached for comment a Dell spokesperson declined to confirm its authenticity.
“They’re going to really realize that we’re serious about this and the trust is going to be stronger than ever so they’ll bring us into more accounts,” Scannell said of the move to get closer to partners. “We know when we work closely with partners, we exceed customer expectations and at the end of the day that is what this is all about.”
Neil Hall, North American president of one of Dell’s Titanium partners, Computacenter, agrees with Scannell and is embracing the change in course.
“It gives predictability and strength to the channel,” he told CRN. “This is the biggest step I’ve seen from a vendor to place much greater significance on the channel in one sweeping move. We want to be there. We want to be a strong partner for Dell and build great success stories for our customers.”
CRN interviewed Scannell and Dell Technologies’ John Byrne, president of sales and global theaters, on the Friday prior to the change going into place. Both men talked about the strategy behind the new plan as well as what they are hearing from customers and partners in the field when it comes to deploying generative AI solutions.
“I got to record this week. I got to six minutes in a meeting before AI came up,” Byrne said. “All of that is not only driving significant demand for AI-capable servers, it’s also driving unbelievable amounts of storage. What does that mean? More storage. What does it mean for the channel? More storage through the channel. And that’s a message we’re delivering.”
Shortly after the announcement was published this past Monday, Dell confirmed there would be “some” layoffs to its sales teams. Dell has not indicated how many jobs were cut, or if the cuts were related or in addition to the 6,650 announced in February.