Axon has awarded long-time distribution partner Datastor and Chris Bornman of storage vendor EMC in its annual vendor awards.
The two external awards – Datastor as Vendor of the Year and Bornman as Vendor Representative of the Year - are given at the same time as up to 10 awards for Axon’s own staff.
Bornman is a senior technology consultant at EMC. The Vendor of the Year prize is also open to distributors.
The integrator says the awards have gained increasing relevance as a benchmarking opportunity during the 10 years they’ve been offered, particularly as the economic environment has grown harsher.
“We want to create a formal feedback mechanism for our vendor partners on comparative strengths and weaknesses and the outcome we’re looking for is everyone gets better,” says Axon CEO Scott Green. “Talking to some of the vendors, they’re motivated by the opportunity to be recognised and they strive that bit harder to do a good job for us. That’s good for our customers and it does engender goodwill with the vendors. The vendors see it’s not just a ‘take take take’ relationship.”
Axon works with most major vendors and distributors in New Zealand through a mix of direct and via-distribution relationships. It has worked with Datastor since the distributor’s inception in 1992 and with EMC for about five years.
The awards process begins with a survey in July whereby Axon staff nominate people they believe have performed highly in a particular area of the business. Green, partner manager Simon Goode and other Axon staff then narrow the list of nominees down to the finalists and in August staff vote for the winners. Aspects of vendors’ performance, such as timely shipping, simplicity of transactions, customer satisfaction with quotations along with availability and service are also considered.
Microsoft, EMC and Ingram Micro were other vendor finalists, while Bornman took his award ahead of Jason Molloy (formerly of Datastor and now with APC), Victoria Stammers from Datastor and Scott van Wayenburg from Ingram Micro.
Axon puts considerable effort into deciding its vendor award winners, as it does in submitting entries for local partner awards such as those held by Microsoft, says Green.
“We’ve put a lot of effort into the Microsoft awards in particular. We see a lot of benefit because it helps to demonstrate to the market that based on criteria by a third party, you’re seen as a bit better than your competitors.”
Datastor held a barbecue for staff to celebrate winning the Axon award, with CEO Dave Rosenberg saying the recognition is welcome.
“As with a number of our partners, we have a really good relationship in building business.”