The announcement late last year that Dell Technologies would be merging its direct and indirect sales units into one organisation has subsequently seen a reshuffling of its senior execs and management team.
This restructuring includes current UK VP of enterprise sales Dayne Turbitt taking over as general manager for the country and Adrian McDonald take on the title of EMEA president, a role merged with his current one as head of EMEA for Dell EMC.
McDonald told CRN that the vendor will be pushing its ‘Technologies' brand to the fore, with Dell EMC becoming more of a product line.
Here he outlines the impact the consolidated sales unit will have on partners and his own ambitions for his new job.
As an EMC veteran, you're an old hand at servers and storage, but your new role will see your responsibilities include new areas for you, such as PCs. How do you anticipate overseeing the PC operations in a market that has been somewhat tumultuous in recent years?
The PC market is actually fairly robust. For years, Michael Dell has said that the rumours of the death of the PC have been exaggerated. In fact, the PC market has been growing relatively substantially over the last few years - nowhere more so than in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
We're seeing double-digit growth in the PC market and we see that continuing...the commercial PC market is - if anything - having somewhat of a renaissance. The three main players: ourselves, HP and Lenovo all gain share on a consistent basis.
From my perspective, it's fun - it's always good to learn new things. In terms of the value that we bring to the market and into our customers - collectively and individually - it is a very key string to our bow.
I would say one of our major go-to-markets is both the design and the practicality of our PC lineup. But, just as important, is what that means for digital workplace transformation; how we can bring the next generation of workers to come into their company, to get the tools that they desire and to be as productive as they can be.
Thus far it has been working out well for us and it's a part of a company that we're as proud of as our successes in other areas.
Your new title comes as part of the overall restructuring of Dell's sales organisation. How will this merging of the direct and indirect sales units affect partners?
The initial reactions from the market have been extremely positive. It simplifies things immensely; instead of dealing with at least two sales groups in given countries, you now deal with one.
This restructuring also allows us to put more resources into these go to markets. It just allows us much more simplification and it allows us to focus on the partner support model in a more telling fashion.
I believe that we are entering a relatively significant [period of] consolidation in our industry. I'm seeing our end user customers - and also our partners - re-evaluating who they're going to place their bets with going forward. I think in both the end user case - and the partner case - they're going to place their bets with fewer and fewer partners, but they're going to try and do more and more in those partnerships. I think we're a natural fit for a large part of the partner community across this territory and globally.
In essence, we free up resources that were spent inefficiently in supporting two different go-to-markets when we can better support one. It also allows us to be more enterprise-focused in places like the public sector and allows us more transactional focus in some of the larger accounts.
What do you mean when you say we are entering a period of consolidation in the market?
In general terms, the IT market continues to grow and that won't be any different going forward. But there are times of a given consolidation, ie fewer players in any given product area. I would say in markets like hardware infrastructure, there will be potentially fewer players there going forward.
When I talk to the channel community, they are aware of a changing landscape and of the fact that some companies have a more assured and bigger future. Therefore, partners are placing more of their focus and more of their training and development dollars in areas where they think the business is more sustainable and can grow over the next few years.
What are your objectives for your new role?
If it was one phrase, I want our customers to win in the digital age and I want to enable our customers to win in the digital age.
We're a company that doesn't lack in ambition; we have a very distinct view of what the market will be and we live in a digital age.
We believe that between 2020 and 2030 - what we're calling the data decade - there will be substantial growth in the IT market and our intent is to be in the middle of all those transformations and all those changes that help us in business, in society and personally.
Customers want three things; they want to win in business, they want to be cyber resilient and they want to change the nature of costs. I think the early signs are good that we help our customers immensely to win in the digital age.
From a personal standpoint, I've spent 32 years working with the partner community across EMEA. I have a great passion for the region, I have a great passion for its people and have a great passion for the partner community, which is largely unchanged. Most of the partners that we've dealt with over the years have done very well alongside EMC, Dell, and now Dell Technologies.
I think that the future is rosy and I look forward to taking that journey with our friends in the partner community.
The recent outbreak of the Wuhan coronavirus has led tech companies, such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Google, to shut down their operations in China, which has led to concerns about the disruption in their supply chains. What are Dell's plans with regard to its Chinese processes?
We have a constant watching brief on things like coronavirus and, like our peers, things like travel to and from China have already been stopped, in essence. We're very focused on what we can do for our customers and our friends in China.
But we are prepared. Our logistics around the world, in all of our manufacturing centres, are prepared to take on more of the workload should we need to make major changes in terms of our deliveries from China.
Likewise, as the UK officially leaves the European Union today, how do you anticipate any disruption to the supply chain as a result of Brexit?
We've been fully stocked here throughout the entire Brexit period. We were quite early in terms of ensuring that there will be no impact to our customers in the UK and our preparations for any other contingency that we need for the UK's impact on Europe are in place. We're in good shape.
We're looking for both the UK and the European Union governments to come to a satisfactory conclusion in as easy a fashion as possible. Clearly, we want to remove uncertainty as quickly as we can.
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