SMBs are prioritising partners that can offer localised support and guidance in an ever-changing and increasingly complex IT environment, Dell’s latest research has revealed.
The research, conducted across the UK, France and Germany on behalf of Dell by analyst Foster MacCallum International, claimed that 75 per cent of those questioned noticed a change in SMB buying patterns and concerns, primarily as a result of the economy and the increasing complexity of the IT market.
In turn, SMB resellers are keen to partner with vendors that can offer stability and support, particularly at a time when larger integrators and vendors are targeting the SMB space as a direct source of income, the research found.
George Dziedzic, founding and managing director of Foster MacCallum, said: “SMBs are generating huge amounts of data and many do not have a good idea of how to back it up or keep their business safe. The amount of digital data is going to be 44 times greater in 2020 than it is now and this is an opportunity for the channel.
“The recession is forcing businesses to reassess priorities such as capital expenditure, and the speed at which the IT industry is changing means companies need to know their options to address key business issues,” he added. “It is an opportunity for resellers to become a trusted adviser and a valued partner that can nurture and support their customers.”
Kathy Schneider, director of EMEA channel marketing and programmes at Dell, said: “We have been really emphasising our commitment to the end-to-end IT solution – from desktops through to the datacentre, and security through to storage – and we have been aggressive in acquiring IP. Differentiation is very important to our partners, and by acquiring IP and offering the complete solution, we are helping them to stand out from the crowd.”
Schneider said Dell is investing heavily in the networking space after its acquisition of Force 10 and is keen to ramp up its security offerings as convergence continues and the trend for employees bringing their own devices to work increases.
The vendor is still on a channel recruitment drive, she said, having surpassed 600 Certified and Registered-level partners in EMEA, although the emphasis is on quality rather than quantity, she stressed.
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