Alcatel-Lucent has moved to plug a sales skills gap in its channel with the launch of a reseller training portal.
The tool is designed to give resellers visibility into the communications vendor’s upcoming training agenda, which will now feature seminars on sales techniques as well as on products and customer support.
Trevor Evans, marketing manager for Alcatel-Lucent enterprise activities in UK and Ireland, said: “We have a comprehensive programme for technical training, but saw there was a gap in educating sales people.
“We hope 50 resellers will take advantage of these courses in 2007. We’ve tried to arrange a menu of courses to appeal to all kinds of resellers from SME to corporate.”
Evans said the idea was to educate partners on the convergence market and sales methodology. He added that VARs can pay for the courses using their marketing funds.
Peter Tankard, managing director of VAR Integrated Business Systems, said: “There has always been a shortage of training in the Alcatel-Lucent channel, particularly in sales training.
“But Alcatel-Lucent is now much more focused on getting the message across to the dealer channel. The portal gives VARs very good visibility of where they are as a company and helps with budgeting.”
Mark Hatton, managing director of Alcatel-Lucent distributor Sphinx, said: “The better informed we can make the front-line sales guys, the more successful they will be.
“This allows partners to do things at their own pace. One of the issues of classroom-based training is it takes people out of the field and it’s clear that a large amount of sales training can be done online.”
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