FrontRange has declared its ongoing commitment to the channel, announcing new staff appointments and plans to invigorate its partner programs.
The CRM vendor's Asia-Pacific vice-president, John O'Brien, said confusion over the direction of the company and its history as a direct sales organisation had led it to reinstate its channel model.
"I have been telling people that we have to play with a straight bat and be super consistent and fair as in the past we haven't done that so well," he said. "What we are trying to do now is rejuvenate our entire partner program so that people understand what is going on inside the company and the way to do business with us."
One of O'Brien's first priorities has been boosting its channel sales resources. The vendor has appointed a new A/NZ sales manager, Raul Lake, and a new northern sales manger, John Gilleran, to add to the company's August appointment of southern sales manager, Andrew Seabrook.
The new staff would help partners sell and implement FrontRange's Heat and Goldmine products offerings during the initial sales process, hopefully equipping them with the skills to then repeat the process by themselves.
"Our goal is to move as much as we can toward a channel model but the speed at which we can do that depends on the expertise of our existing and new channel," he said. "One of the goals in recruiting these new people is to enable us to train up the channel quicker."
An additional partner manager would be added to FrontRange's Sydney head office, and a dedicated channel marketing resource would be taken on within the next three months, O'Brien said.
The drive to closer channel ties was given more urgency by the impending release of FrontRange's new Internet ProtocoI Contact Centre (IPCC) Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) products.
"These products are based on the new information technology infrastructure library [ITIL] standards," he said. "From a sales point of view, partners need not only to be able to speak to the help desk people, but to senior IT people and talk knowledgably about these new standards. With these standards you are also changing the way a company operates so a partner has to be fairly disciplined in the way they implement this."
Greater access to senior management was also vital in building closer ties with the channel, O'Brien said.