In this newly created column, ARN examines the future channel strategies of vendors across Australia, starting with HP country business manager – commercial channel, Chris Hewlett.
What are HP’s top priorities in 2017?
We will continue to work collaboratively with our partners on combined growth initiatives.
By building the strongest relationships with partners, including having a deep understanding of each other’s strengths and capabilities, we can focus on growing in areas that are beneficial for our joint organisations.
On top of this we want to continue to amplify the voice of our partner community via our HP Partner Advisory Council.
This gives us the opportunity to connect with our partners to discuss how we can continue to partner seamlessly.
How has the company evolved as a vendor since its split from Hewlett Packard Enterprise?
Since the separation in November 2015, HP has emerged as a nimbler, forward thinking IT and technology focused company.
With a renewed focus on innovation, HP continues to push the envelope when it comes to R&D. During the separation, we ensured that our partners where on the forefront of what was happening as well as ensuring that the commitments we made to our partners where met.
Ensuring that the transition for our channel partners was as smooth as possible was vital to the success of the separation.
What are the major trends currently impacting the market?
A trend which we continue to see evolve is the millennial shift to a more mobile and flexible workforce. The traditional office setting is soon becoming a thing of the past.
As we see the millennial workforce continue to grow we are presented with the changes in working styles and functions.
Millennials are changing the rules when it comes to the workforce. Flexible work options, a collaborative culture and career development are high priorities.
How are the changing demands of the customer impacting the channel?
Soon, 60 per cent of the workforce will be under 35 years old. The ageing and shrinking of Australia’s workforce requires a higher level of productivity and flexibility.
This is reflected in how the workforce is conducting itself internally as well as how businesses are developing products and services to meet external demands.
According to Deloitte, 81 per cent of Aussie CEOs have indicated that a shift to platform-based product and service delivery will be crucial within three years. Customers are looking to partners to deliver integrated solutions, which are easy to plan, manage, and consume.
What are the key challenges for partners to overcome in the year ahead?
Keeping up-to-date with the changing needs of customers will continue to be very important. Customers want to consume IT, including accessing, replacing, refreshing hardware, in new and different ways.
Partners that understand how IT can truly help their customers’ businesses, and meet the demands of the future, will be the ones that succeed in the coming years.
Where do you see opportunity for partners in 2017?
For HP’s partners, we still see a huge opportunity in our core areas of traditional commercial Desktop, Notebook and 2-in-1 products. Customers are still looking for products that are cost effective, well supported, and meet the needs of their business and personal lives.
Partners can take this technology then add their own solutions and capability to provide greater value to customers.
Other areas for HP also include our new fleet of A3 & A4 print products that will provide customers with industry leading technology focused on security, manageability and quality.
In one word, how do you think channel partners describe your company?
This article originally appeared in the February issue of ARN Magazine, to subscribe - click here