'It's easier to speak to God than my account manager': 21 most brutal burns from CRN Vendor Report 2021

Can you match the quote to the vendor in question?

Doug Woodburn
clock • 4 min read

The CRN Vendor Report is back, and this time it's bigger and better than ever.

Out soon, the 70,000-word report saw a record 335 UK channel partner executives rate up to five of their core vendors across four core services categories. The top 45 were then ranked.

It also offered them a unique opportunity to give anonymous, no-holds-barred written feedback on their key allies - good, bad or indifferent.

Respondents duly did not hold back, leaving 4,230 meaningful comments across the four categories (Technology Leadership, Channel Strategy and Account Management, Margins, Leads and Incentives and Training and Accreditation).

For more information on this paid-for report, please email [email protected].

Following our summary of the top 20 most glowing comments, here we round up 21 of the most brutal put downs left by respondents in the written sections. Can you match them to the correct vendor?

Quote 1: "I loathe [them], and we would never sell their products if it was not for customer demand. Staff are not responsive, and seem to think that ‘urgent' is Swahili for ‘when I feel like getting round to it'."

Potential candidates...

Quote 2: "One-trick pony refusing to innovate and rising high on need over want"

Potential candidates...

Quote 3: "Products are still market leading but now owned by a company lacking in drive and customer service. I don't know what company they are anymore."

Potential candidates...

Quote 4: "Their salespeople have adopted the pushy American standard, and it goes down badly in the UK"

Potential candidates...

Quote 5: "[They] are only interested in partners when there's something in it for them. In the last three years, I've experienced a raft of issues with their account team and accountability. They are by far the worst vendor I have to deal with."

Potential candidates...

Quote 6: "Company spoilt from being bought out - it's easier to speak to God than my account manager"

Potential candidates...

Quote 7: "[It] has a great product set… but, by God, its pricing strategy and renewals process is an absolute disaster"

Potential candidates...

 

Quote 8: "Expensive and low margin, so it becomes a hard sell. You are chased by an account manager who is ruthlessly intent on closing the deal at all costs to hit an aggressive number, but there's little interest in sharing the spoils. Which makes other products a priority."

Potential candidates...

Quote 9: "[Their] incentives are very weak when compared to their competitors as they believe their products sell by themselves"

Potential candidates...

Quote 10: "They seem a bit stagnant to me; I don't see what the discussion is with customers"

Potential candidates...

Quote 11: "There is too much black magic. It's a full-time job to manage the different programmes."

Potential candidates...

Quote 12: "As a VAR our biggest competitor is [them] themselves and we're constantly under cut and stripped out of deals. Deal registration processes are flagrantly ignored and the country leadership team too focused on 'doing the number' that come Q4 it's a warzone with the channel. Partners are treated as overlay and there is no recognition of value."

Potential candidates...

Quote 13: "In our market, they have near zero understanding of the customer and no desire to engage with the partners, doggedly insisting that a direct relationship and the most expensive licences are the right way to go even though the product is not ready for the UK."

Potential candidates...

Quote 14: "[It] is the worst in the channel [for margins]. You need to grow your business 2.5x per annum to stand still on incentives. Worse still, those incentive goalposts keep moving, which can impact earnings over the life of a deal."

Potential candidates...

Quote 15: "Direct sales are a pain. They charge resellers like us nearly US$1,000 a year for the privilege of making money for them with very low margins. Disgusting company. Good product, shame about the leadership."

Potential candidates...

Quote 16: "No or very little contact; when there is it is very abrupt and dictatorial"

Potential candidates...

 

Quote 17: "[They] have a habit of getting every last member of the sales staff into long meetings during the working day. Regular turnover of account managers doesn't help, and any pre-sales technical queries made by sales staff on a reseller's behalf are rarely if ever answered."

Potential candidates...

Quote 18: "Senior management are useless. Utterly clueless. Channel-facing account managers are good, but hampered by senior management. Any query takes an interminably long time to be answered.  Direct sales from their website are a real thorn in our side."

Potential candidates...

Quote 19: "Products are glitchy and troublesome - however they are the best among the pile of festering ***** that make up the remote support and management solutions [market]."

Potential candidates...

Quote 20: "They have to do better as Microsoft started competing at the lower end of the market"

Potential candidates...

Quote 21: "Usually very experienced and highly paid channel guys. They are like vultures though! They swoop down at the end of the month and stay closest to whoever places an order."

Potential candidates...

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