Hayes has launched a new program intended to establish "win/win" partnerships between the modem manufacturer and its resellers. Hayes's Advanced Communications Specialist (HACS) program, and the associated Hayes Expert program, offers sales and technical training and certification free of charge to resellers.
Andrew Phillips, Hayes country manager for Australia and New Zealand, says the HACS program seeks to provide Hayes resellers with assistance on technical support, inventory control, price protection and promotions. "Very simply, the goal of HACS is to help resellers sell more Hayes products. That includes everything from streamlining the ordering and return process to helping with stock rotation to making cooperative marketing funds available," he said. Phillips says the HACS program also includes a performance reward plan, whereby resellers can earn a bonus from Hayes, and plans that make demonstration stock and staff purchases easier.
In order for a reseller to qualify for HACS, at least one member of staff must complete Hayes' Sales and Technical Expert courses. If a reseller has branch offices, at least one person in each office must have completed the Sales Expert course. Phillips says the Hayes Expert courses are open-book and include a pass/fail examination at the end of each course. They are cost free and are conducted at selected locations in Sydney and Melbourne. Typically, the courses last one day, although some may take place over two days, he said.
Included in the Sales Expert course are components on intramodem communications, accessing bulletin board systems, selling Internet-related services and gaining maximum throughput. The Technical Expert course focuses on installing communications hardware and software, on-line service and troubleshooting.
The gospel according to Phillips
Phillips provided Australian Reseller News with a number of interesting observations on the modem marketplace.
On cable modems: "Because it's not centred on desktop/dialup, it's not something we're going to be involved with at this stage," he said. "If resellers think they're going to get any part of the cable modem market, I think they're going to be sadly mistaken. That business is going to be completely dominated by the major carriers. When you order pay television, you'll be able to tick a box saying whether or not you want a cable modem installed as well. The remote site-to-host end of the business is more promising."
On the chip shortage that plagued modem manufacturers a few months ago: "There's been quite a turnaround in a relatively short amount of time. There's now an excess of chips and I think that's being reflected in dropping modem prices."
On whether Hayes will ever sell direct to resellers: "No. We never sell direct and that means we get greater mindshare among our distributors. They know that all sales are going to go through them."