AccessMyLibrary provides FREE access to millions of articles from top publications available through your library.
Business partners, Websphere, and Profitability WSDJ editorial board member Jim Martin recently sat down with Mike Colleary, vice president of IBM Software Channels, Americas, to talk about WebSphere.
WSDJ: PLEASE GIVE US A THUMBNAIL SKETCH OF YOUR BOLE WITHIN THE ORGANIZATION.
MC: I'm the vice president of IBM Software Channels and Small/Medium Business (SMB) Sales for the Americas, that is, United States, Canada, and Latin America. I report to Barry Gibbons, vice president of Americas Software. Channels include all IBM Software's Business Partners and all sales and support coverage resources for SMB software customers.
WSDJ: SO YOU GO ACROSS THE DIFFERENT IBM SOFTWARE BRANDS?
MC: Yes, IBM's middleware software brands. This encompasses IBM'S industry-leading WebSphere, DB2, Lotus, and Tivoli portfolio of software products. I am responsible for Business Partner middleware software sales and SMB software sales throughout the five regions that segment the Americas geography. Business Partners cover all sizes of customer accounts, not just small- and medium-size businesses. Our Business Partners are deployed to cover IBM software's sales opportunities.
Let me explain a little further: we have established a two-tier distribution network of Business Partners (BPs). This distribution model ensures that we have the right kind of sales and support infrastructure and BPs in place to achieve our software business objectives and complement the BPs' hardware systems and services businesses. This two-tier sales model begins with an effective set of value-added distributors (VADs), such as Pioneer/KeyLink, Arrow/ SupportNet, Avnet, Ingram Micro, Tech Data, and SYNNEX. These distributors have a network of solution providers and resellers that make up the second tier of this distribution model.
I have a channel sales and support team that is responsible for the VADs because they work with these firms to ensure they have effective reseller recruiting programs, demand-generation marketing programs and campaigns, training, and technical support programs. They are also responsible for administrative tasks such as presales support for configuring and processing orders. In support of the tier-two solution providers and resellers, I have another sales team that focuses on their role in our important sales infrastructure. These tier-two BPs traditionally create an e-business solution to address a customer's business requirement, build a value proposition for a customer, show the customer how this solution will solve their business problem - by building a prototype "proof of concept," close the sale, and deploy the e-business …