Dell’s recent mid-year partner update showed that the company is confident in its established channel strategy, but recognizes a potential for growth through the end of the fiscal year.
In the first half of fiscal 2020, global channel order revenue grew by 11% and distribution revenue grew 9%. Global channel products grew by 6%, server sales 13%, and storage numbers were up by 15%. Dell Financial Services’ originations grew by 9%, and new/reactivated customers increased by 11%. Dell Technologies partners have brought in about $52 million in revenues over the last year, according to Joyce Mullen, Dell’s president of global channel, embedded, and edge solutions.
That much growth is great to see, and Dell’s growth is even more impressive considering the difficult global social and political climate. Mullen cited “really tough macroeconomic pressures” including Brexit, trade tensions between the US and China, and industry-wide lower growth rates as some of the struggles facing the tech industry right now. According to Mullen, Dell’s diverse customer base and partner community are the reason the company has been able to weather difficulties so smoothly compared to its competitors.
Gregg Ambulos, senior vice president of North American channel sales, said that since April, Dell’s NPS (net promoter score) increased from 53 to 56, yet another number showing positive growth and potential.
Since Dell’s Technologies Partner Program launched, the company has encouraged its partners to take advantage of its extensive portfolio and cross-sell. Dell frequently notes that its portfolio is one of the major assets setting it apart from competitors. “We know that the real value is not in individual projects and solutions, but in the combination of the greater Dell Technologies portfolio,” Mullen said.
Mullen also mentioned that Dell partners that sell three lines of business (for example, storage, servers, and client products) earn 29 times more revenue than partners selling just one line of business. “Partners who sell across the portfolio are more successful,” Mullen said.
Earlier this year Dell kicked off an initiative to create a unified set of partner tools. The initiative, called the Dell Digital Way, includes automating parts of the deal registration process, creating a single quoting platform, and streamlining the entire process from quotation to order checkout.
“In the next three years, we will invest multi-millions of dollars in the Dell Digital Way, which will give … our partners best-in-class self-service tools and automation and resources,” Mullen said.
Darren Sullivan, senior vice president of global partner strategy, programs, and operations at Dell, said that Dell Digital Way is yet another move the company has made to streamline its user experience and foster a “much greater self-service capability [and] a more seamless automated experience when collaborating with our sales teams.”
As for the second half of the fiscal year, Dell’s partners will remain focused on the company’s key channel sales initiatives — acquiring new customers, cross-selling the portfolio, and attaching services to sales.
Mullen encouraged partners to get refreshed on Dell’s Technologies Programs’ new tier requirements, which go into effect at the end of January 2020.
Ambulos noted that North American channel sales will be following a new territory-based model that lets Dell collaborate more closely with partners in regional markets and expand partner sales and technical development. Dell plans to continue encouraging excellence and solid training in channel strategy, partner programs, and partners’ capabilities.