Avaya has axed its revenue-based partner programme in favour of a points system to help smaller partners to progress through its ranks.
The communication vendor’s enterprise VARs previously had to spend over £750,000, £3m and £6m to net Silver, Gold or Platinum status, respectively.
But it has scrapped the revenue thresholds after admitting the system was failing customers. In its place, partners must rack up 1,000, 2,000 or 3,000 points to qualify for each level. This will be based on their investment in areas such as technical and sales resources, and niche application skills.
Patricia Hume, vice president channel sales EMEA at Avaya, told CRN: “We dropped the revenue thresholds scheme because it wasn’t delivering what our customers really needed from business partners.”
Nick Lee, sales director at Avaya Silver partner LuxTech, said Avaya’s revenue targets had prevented the firm from progressing to a higher level.
“We are an SME with 35 staff competing against firms with 100 telesales staff,” she said. “We haven’t progressed because the previous programme was based on shifting boxes, which is wrong. We’re fully behind this new programme.”
Neil Moulton, head of voice sales at distributor Westcon, said: “This enables resellers that specialise in technology to have the same advantages as the volume players.”
Alastair Edwards, senior analyst at Canalys, said: “Vendors can no longer rely on partners that take the volume-only approach to deliver value.”
Excluding Germany, Avaya generates 60 per cent of its EMEA sales through partners.
Hume said she hoped to boost that figure to 72 per cent by the end of 2010. “We have a very large team focused on channel management and this new programme is a proof of our commitment to the channel.”
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