Key channel plays for 2015
SugarCRM’s 2015 channel strategy is based on three key plays. The first is strengthening our regional presence, ensuring we have full coverage across Australia and New Zealand. We’re achieving this by recruiting new partners to assist and expand our current footprint in the region.
The second play is to significantly invest in training and development, through SugarCRM’s Enablement Program. SugarCRM has specialised programs available; either for sales, administrator or developer teams. We’ve been rolling this out already in 2015, and it has proved hugely successful in ensuring our partners are highly skilled in deploying Sugar7, our newest product.
The third major focus is ensuring both SugarCRM and our partners are best aligned to service enterprise customers effectively. There are small but important differences when dealing with enterprise level customers, and SugarCRM is investing in training and development in this regard too.
Key technology for 2015
Our key technology this year has been the launch of Sugar7, a significant shift towards a complete out-of-the-box solution, rather than a developer focused solution. There have been some major developments and enhancements/improvements to Sugar7, including advancements in mobility, business workflow assistance and personalisation. The mobility functions, such as the ability to use Sugar7 on your mobile device, have been driven and finessed based on user demand and customer feedback.
Key message to the channel for 2015
SugarCRM’s overarching message to the channel is for partners to start viewing themselves as technology and business transformation advisors, who can provide specialist insight into how technology can be optimised to achieve business goals.
The channel has been great at solving technological problems, but as technology becomes an even more integral part of business, the channel is in a unique place to add great value by consulting at a business level.
SugarCRM would also recommend that the channel start to prepare for a talent squeeze, as the growth of CRM as a sector shows no signs of abating. Business analysts and other CRM specialist roles will be created in order to cater to the needs of service the growing industry. Efforts and investments made now to improve training and professional development will ensure a steady supply of top quality employees coming through to fill the expanding number of roles.
Key warning to the channel for 2015
Data storage and Cloud are at the source of some tension in the Asia Pacific market specifically. Concerns about the location of servers and where customer data is stored, are increasingly frightening to many business owners. As regulatory and legal requirements are updated, business owners may be forced into housing customer data either on-premise or in a private cloud. Being able to deliver customised hosting options is a key differentiator, as some purely SaaS operators see themselves discounted from contracts due to increasingly stringent procurement rules around data security.
Key to your company’s success in 2015
Telling the story of our customers’ successes is an area of huge focus for us this year, as it will heighten both our customers’ and our own visibility. SugarCRM will make a concerted effort to share the good news and strong business results in 2015, as the market needs to see what we are doing for our customers, and the results we’re achieving as a partnership.
The appointment of SugarCRM’s newest talent – our customer success executives – will also be pivotal in delivering great results for us this year. A program implemented by SugarCRM’s recently appointed chief customer officer, Remy Malan, SugarCRM’s customer success executives’ role will be to ensure our existing customers are deploying and utilising SugarCRM products to the very best of its abilities.