Dell Technologies is moving ahead with plans to unite multiple solutions and services under one channel roof, bringing together a vast technology portfolio in a cross-sell partner play.
The umbrella group spans products from Dell, Dell EMC, VMware and RSA, in addition to Secureworks, Boomi, Virtustream and Pivotal.
Reinforced ahead of Dell Technologies World 2019 in Las Vegas, the strategy is designed to create an ecosystem in which the technology giant operates as a one-stop-shop for partners and customers alike, spanning servers and storage, to compute and security.
“The notion of cross-selling is working in the channel,” said Joyce Mullen, president of global channel at Dell EMC. “We’re seeing partners that only sold storage before, now start to sell compute and vice versa, while also expand capabilities around VMware.”
During the past 12 months, the channel acquired over 63,000 customers for the vendor across the world, with partners earning 29x more in revenue when selling three lines of business - such as client, server and storage - compared to one skew.
“There’s a lot of value in this approach for partners,” Mullen added. “Partners can already buy VMware licences and offerings from Dell EMC, while still receiving the benefit of the VMware program.
“As of this year, VMware sales will count towards tiering for Dell EMC partners, and we’re working on the operational pieces to streamline those activities.
“Secureworks is also building out a channel program and they have launched solutions and skews that can be purchased in select countries allowing partners to buy through Dell Technologies.”
Currently, the channel can already purchase RSA, Boomi and Virtustream in this way, with Mullen insisting the vendor is “moving in the right direction” in terms of creating a simplified cross-sell market.
“We have a vision to make this much easier through a single contract for example,” Mullen explained. “We’re working toward that and backing that up with even more incentives when partners put together different aspects of the program.”
One such incentive will be around market development funds (MDF) and demand-generation activities across multiple brands, which is expected to be announced in more detail during Dell Technologies World 2019.
“We’re also trying to consolidate certifications,” Mullen added. “We’ve made some progress there in that partners can now be trained in virtualisation on VMware, which means they don’t need to complete Dell EMC training on top of that.”
Addressing the channel following a whistle-stop tour of Asia - including Australia and India - Mullen said the vendor’s priorities in 2019 remain centred around three core areas; simplification, engagement and emerging technologies.
“Firstly, we want to make it easier to do business with Dell and that’s from an operational perspective, aligning to our simple and predictable mantra,” Mullen explained. “We’ve made continuous improvements in this space and are taking steps towards a fully self-service and automated model.”
Secondly, and echoing the vendor’s global cross-sell sentiment, Dell is running a series of pilots to help partners engage and transact across a wider portfolio of offerings.
“We’ve figured out a lot of things that we should and shouldn’t be doing in that respect,” Mullen acknowledged. “We have new offers in the pipeline allowing us to better support VMware for example, alongside Secureworks as they build out channel capabilities.”
Thirdly, Mullen said positioning partners toward emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning will be paramount, alongside the Internet of Things, augmented reality and virtual reality.
“We must help our partners embrace and monetise the new technologies that are coming on strong,” Mullen added. “These technologies are entering the market and driving complexity for customers, which represents a tremendous opportunity for partners.”
Such a focus appears to be working, with partners delivering US$49 billion in orders during the past 12 months, driven by the acquisition of new customers, but also increased cross-selling.
“We’re happy with the results of last year,” Mullen said. “We didn’t set a timeframe on that target from a channel perspective but we achieved it quickly so naturally, we don’t want to make any major changes in 2019.
“We’re riding an incredible investment wave as customers across the world think carefully about digital transformation, which is enabling them to prioritise IT infrastructure spend in ways the market hasn’t experienced for a while.”
In assessing market investments, Mullen said Dell Technologies took a “disproportionate share” of the global growth, citing the vision of “bringing these companies together” as a contributing factor.
“We have the broadest portfolio with the most unique IP and we’ve spent over $12 billion in last three years on R&D alone,” Mullen added. “We’re in an advantageous position in helping customers digitally transform and our channel team and program is also in a good position to support partners.”