We can now reveal even more details from CRN's first Vendor Report, including all the rankings, says Sara Yirrell
It has been nearly two months since CRN launched its inaugural Vendor Report and the response from the industry has been better than we could have hoped.
For the first time we are able to publish the final rankings, so those 40 vendors that were picked by the channel to actually feature in the list can see where they came overall.
Of course the report goes a lot deeper than that, but to get the full analytical version, including detailed comments from the resellers on every individual vendor, requires a fee.
The 292 respondents at VARs, solution integrators, distributors, MSPs and hosting/cloud specialists were asked to grade the performance of each vendor they had dealt with in the past year based on five service areas: product quality, account management, accreditation and training, after-sales and technical support, and rebates and margin retention.
Respondents were asked to grade those of which they had had hands-on experience during the previous 12 months. Grades were then totalled up, divided up by the number of respondents to get an average score and then multiplied by 25 to produce a score out of 100. These scores were then used to compile performance league tables.
Each vendor also has a detailed individual profile, with relevant comments on their individual performance within the full report.
It is safe to say that this report is indeed a first-of-its-kind study in the UK into how IT vendors are really perceived by their partners. This has never been done before in such depth and detail and certainly not on a comparative basis.
Because the results were anonymous and the research independently carried out, the feedback received is probably the most forthright and frank that any vendor mentioned will see.
Below is a sneak peak into some of the results of the deep dive into our five service areas.
Unsurprisingly, Apple ranked top for product quality, with Cisco coming a close second. However, both top-ranking vendors had their criticisms in the forthright comments the report received from respondents.
In general the main complaints recorded in the product quality category covering all 40 vendors included "dated" and "ugly" products and problems with "bloatware".
But who did those comments refer to? In the words of Harry Hill, "there's only one way to find out…."
Topping this particular chart was EMC with Websense coming hard on its heels in second place. Again, despite the rankings, both vendors had their fair share of complaints.
Overall, those vendors with well-informed and savvy account managers were given credit and positive scores, but many were criticised for "idle", "arrogant" and "rude" staff. How did your company do? And do you agree with others' comments?
Accreditation and training
VMware was the king of the road in this category, with Cisco coming second yet again. Both top players once more had their share of complaints as well as positive comments.
Overall, some vendors were classed as having excellent programmes, but others were harangued for having "dull" and "inward-looking" training and accreditation programmes, and many were labelled as too expensive. Were you one of them?
After sales and technical support
NetApp came top in this category, with VMware following close behind - both receiving some interesting feedback.
However, it was in this category that some respondents really let fly about their vendors, with many lamenting "useless" Indian call centres and "arrogant" support staff.
What was your feedback?
Rebates and margin retention
It wasn't always the big players that scored the highest, as this category attests. Mimecast topped the league here, beating behemoth NetApp into second place.
Selling products without making margin is obviously not a popular pastime for VARs, so those vendors at the bottom really need to have a think about what incentive they are giving their partners to sell. Can you afford not to know if you were one of them?
In the full report every one of the five service areas, plus two further variables: demand generation and funding, and channel leadership, are fully ranked in order.
To get hold of the full report and find out where you ranked in all the different areas, please contact Colin Logan via [email protected]. This month we are also releasing tailored versions for resellers and distributors. Stay tuned to ChannelWeb for more details.
Below is the full list of overall rankings:
25) Trend Micro
31) Check Point
32) Blue Coat