Novell specialisations aim to drive new partner business

Novell specialisations aim to drive new partner business

Networking management vendor introduces channel specialisations and new assessments measurements as part of revised PartnerNet program

Novell has relaunched its partner program with new specialisations and assessment processes in a bid to drive more solutions sales.

Under the revised PartnerNet structure, the vendor has simplified its Medallion tiering into Platinum, Gold and Silver categories. Its channel is divided into solution providers, ISVs, VARs and training partners. Novell has an Alliance Model specifically for OEM and distribution relationships.

Beneath the top-level tiers, partners will be recognised by four key specialisations: Datacentre, End-User Computing, Identity and Security Management, and ISVs. Each requires partners to have several sales and technical staff certified, as well as a certain percentage of revenue generated from new customers. The specialisations came into effect on November 1.

During a briefing in Sydney, Asia-Pacific channel manager, John Donovan, said the aim was to improve how Novell solutions were taken to market by better understanding its partners’ businesses.

“Rather than base all on revenue, we want to look at the behaviour of our partner base,” Donovan said. “It’s about enabling our partners and accelerating partner profitability.”

Notably, Novell will ask Platinum and Gold partners to nominate several customers they will be assessed on. Partners will also be measured on revenue contribution, their efforts to build a broader customer base and certification levels. A key requirement for partners is to develop business plans and targets.

Partners will have six months to get accreditations in order. In February, Novell will start to run performance assessments by looking at customer feedback, training commitment and skills, and revenue, Donovan said.

Novell already made significant changes to its partner program in February including online-based sales and technical training modules, services shadowing for top-tier partners, influencer rebates and marketing tools.

Donovan highlighted its deal registration system, which provides up to 20 per cent rebates for partners who bring on new Novell customers.

It also removed program fees and added in an Entry Value Program in a bid to attract and make it easier for new partners to join its fold.

Donovan said all PlateSpin partners had also now been integrated into PartnerNet under the datacentre tier and could access the same channel levels and benefits. Novell acquired the virtualisation vendor in April 2009 for $US205 million.

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