Software distributor, Alstom IT, has launched a new online licensing management system for resellers.
The new Web-based tool gives dealers the ability to track software sales, as well as manage renewal information for their customer base. The system is accessible to all of the distributor's active resellers.
Alstom IT general manager, Greg Newham, said it had devised the online system to provide more value-added services to its resellers. "As a distributor, it seemed a way of providing a point of aggregation," he said.
It had conducted a survey of its resellers asking for feedback on a new annuity offering, Newham said. Of these, 60 per cent of respondents said they would definitely use the system.
"A lot of resellers don't have the back-end systems to do these things in a customised way," he said. "But licensing renewals keep coming back. Resellers need to keep following these up as a competitor could come in and take their business."
Some of its core features include notification emails up to 60 days prior to the renewal date, facilities for updating and querying renewal information, and monthly annuity reports.
Newham said resellers were not restricted to Alstom supplied products and could opt to manage all of their software and services offerings through the new tool.
"We tried to build it to be as flexible as possible," Newham said. "Resellers can add in their own products in a secure environment and have all of their information in one place."
Alstom's decision to offer an annuity management service follows in the footsteps of rival distributor, Express Data, which launched its own annuity offering in February last year.
While ED offers the additional option of providing a notification service to customers on behalf of its reseller, Newham said it had decided to limit its offering to partners.
"We're always keeping a step away from customers, so we won't offer services direct to them," he said.