Storage solutions provider EMC is on a region wide push to work more closely with channel partners, in recognition of the need to provide solutions, not just tin.
"The world of the channel is changing and we have to continue to find ways to be relevant to the partners," says New Zealand country manager Phill Patton. "You can be any old vendor, but you have to be relevant to the channel partner and that's finding opportunitites that we can support them on."
The company appointed veteran EMC employee Chris Bornman to New Zealand channel manager. Bornman has worked at EMC for about a decade and has been an account manager for the company.
"He brings pre-sales experience, sales experience and a desire to work with the channel," Patton says. "So when he sits with a reseller and asks what can we do for you, he isn't just talking about a partner programme."
"He can actually sit down with the technical people if need be to help them," Patton continues. "He's got the sales skills to sit next to their sales team and say let's go to the customer together and I'll help you with a pitch."
Patton says EMC sells direct to two organisations in New Zealand, based on a global contract. Everything else is going to be through the channel ecosystem.
"A lot of organistions will say if it's a big deal, we will take it direct," Patton says. "I think in some geographies EMC may go direct, but there is a general push from EMC to go through channels."
"Throughout the Asia Pacific Japan region, EMC has been moving resources and people to focus on channel partners," Patton says.
Most of EMC business partners are working on virtualisation projects, VDI deployments, or application based projects for ERP or niche app systems. EMC asserts it is part of the bigger project, and can add even more value through its part-ownership of VMware and its sister company, RSA.
"We take it to our business partner how we are part of the overall package and to help them take that solution to the market," Patton says. "People forget the broader EMC story. "
RSA brings encryption of data in storage and in mobility, which business partners have to think about becuase virtualisation projects and mobility have been taking off. Patton reckons that the government shift to purchasing infrastructure as a service has had a trickle down effect in prodding even more organisations to virtualising their servers and storage and moving parts of the business into public, private and hybrid cloud solutions.
"The virtualisation trend has been well-engaged for 18 months," says Patton. "The government has been a catalyst for SMBs and enterprises to do it as well."
EMC launched a new organisation, Pivotal, in April to allow partners to develop solutions to pull together structured, unstructured, and telemetry data. The solution has taken resources from all three sister organisations with a BI engine to collect data.
Whatever solutions EMC wants to engage in will be led by the sales team.
"That's what the rest of the sales team do on the large enterprise accounts, with the Datacoms, the Gen-i's the Dimensions Datas. They can see how an EMC person will sell. We're not saying, you're enabled, go for it. It's how can we put our teams together."