EXCLUSIVE: WatchGuard focusing on guiding partners to service delivery model

Channel strategy aims to move partners away from being solely hardware resellers

Security vendor, WatchGuard Technologies, will be focusing its local channel strategy in the next six to 12 months on assisting partners transition from hardware resellers to consultative organisations, according to the vendor’s Australia and New Zealand (A/NZ) regional director, Pat Devlin.

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Devlin said that, from a security industry perspective, the biggest trend at the channel level is that partners are moving to a service delivery model rather than remaining at the reseller model.

“Four or five years ago, almost everyone we deal with now, were companies that sold hardware and walked away, and now they’re mostly packaging services,” he said.

“The companies that were relying on this idea of ‘I make a sale here and then I’m back at ground zero and have to start again,’ are largely running out of business… Companies tend to still want to chase that ‘one big hit’ and it’s tough.”

The benefit is thus blatant: business longevity.

As such, WatchGuard is endeavouring to guide its partners through the transition in order to secure their security service and trusted advisor status, and as a result, secure its own business transactions.

WatchGuard’s RapidDeploy forms part of the goal. RapidDeploy is a Cloud-based configuration utility that eliminates the need for IT professionals to pre-configure devices or travel to the deployment for installation, according to the vendor. Put simply, it allows a firewall to “configure itself.”

Devlin said that WatchGuard will also be doing a lot more Cloud-based management in order to enable partners to not only bill month to month, but allow them to have more frequent (monthly) conversations with clients/customers.

Nermin Bajric attended WatchGuard Elite 2012 as a guest of WatchGuard.

Follow Nermin Bajric on Twitter: @nermin_au

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