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HP’s Christoph Schell On Amplify Data Insights Launch, ‘Getting Better’ At Managing Supply Constraints

Schell, chief commercial officer at the PC and printer giant, tells CRN that HP is bringing predictive analytics to partners that will be highly useful in a supply-constrained environment.

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What are you offering with HP Amplify Data Insights?

There are three sources of data that flow into this. It’s data that we get from our partners, it’s data that we have ourselves—because of the products that are out in the market and that are providing data to us—and it’s third party data such as market research. At the very beginning, there were some partners that jumped in right away and said, “If I want to compete in an omni channel environment with marketplaces, I need to lean in here.” But there were also a lot of partners that were and continue to be quite skeptical—“Hey HP, what are you going to do with this data?” The ambition really is to equip our partners with opportunities. Here’s your customer and here’s how this customer is purchasing, here’s how this customer is using the equipment and the services that we make available to them. And here is most likely what your customer is going to go for in the future. We try to predict a little bit where this business is going.

So we have these three categories within HP Amplify Data Insights—descriptive insights, predictive insights and prescriptive insights. And I think in particular, in the pilots, the prescriptive insights is where we got a lot of positive feedback from our partners.

I think in the beginning they were like, this is maybe just a way for HP to get to my data. And then some of them were really fearful of us going direct. That’s not the plan. We are very committed to the partners—we don’t want to change that. But we want to get smarter, and we don’t want to be left behind in this channel ecosystem play that we have, relative to go-to-market competition that is going more direct. So for us it’s important that we have a direct touch on this customer, but the way we engage, the way we fulfill, the way we plan the future is staying indirect. But to do so, we need to strengthen that muscle.

I’m really impressed how far this has come. If you look at the amount of data that we are gathering here, it’s quite meaningful.

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