Dell EMC Launches 2019 Partner Program Focused on Growth

The Dell EMC team gets pretty detailed on how partners can make money with the company.

Lynn Haber

February 6, 2019

7 Min Read

Dell EMC on Wednesday formally launched its 2019 partner program, making refinements rather than major changes and addressing the continued evolution of its go-to-market program, new storage initiatives and operational efficiencies.  


Dell EMC’s Joyce Mullen

Global Dell EMC partners drove $49 billion in delivered orders last year. Joyce Mullen, president, global channel, OEM and IoT Solutions at Dell EMC, wants to drive that figure to $70 billion. Keeping that in mind, the company channel chief outlined the partner’s path to profitability in four areas: expand and grow; deliver transformational solutions; accelerate storage; and attach to increase value. 

She also noted Dell EMC’s plans to help partners achieve more this year.

“Make it easier for you to grow your business with us, fast track your ability to deliver transformational solutions, taking advantage of all of the capabilities that Dell Technologies’ family of brands offers, and embracing and monetizing emerging technologies,” Mullen said.

Today’s news follows a partner-priorities push that the company outlined in October. In particular, Dell EMC wanted to close out the year with a big push to gain market share in storage.  

While fourth-quarter figures aren’t yet available, Mullen discussed channel-specific third-quarter results, beginning with a 21 percent year-over-year (YOY), increase in channel order revenue and more than 15,000 new and reactivated customers. Other figures include a 38 percent YOY increase in server revenue, 13 percent increase in client revenue, and 12 percent uptick in storage revenue. 

“The average number of lines of business – storage, servers and networking [and so on] – being sold by partners was up by 10 percent,” said Mullen. “This growth is a testament to the investments that you’re making in our business.” 


Dell EMC’s Darren Sullivan

Darren Sullivan, senior vice president global partner strategy and business, addressed partner-program design and updates for 2019. He outlined enhancements in program requirements, all of which are specific to the vendor’s solution-provider track.

The program has three tiers – gold, platinum and titanium – with requirements in each tier for total revenue, services revenue and training. Last year, the training requirement was simplified — one for gold, two for platinum and three for titanium. Going forward, service-delivery competencies will count toward program requirements. So, earning any product, solution or services-delivery competency will count toward next year’s competency requirements. 

Expect to see the launch of new competencies and trainings – such as a new data-analytics solution competency – throughout the year.

Sullivan also said that for gold-tier partners, the company is cutting in half the number of individuals required to complete training — one sales and one systems engineer. 

“We hope this change allows more partners to achieve gold status and financial benefits,” he said. 

Sullivan said revenue requirements have been simplified to a single path, and the requirement to sell multiple lines of business was removed. He also noted that the company is extending its tier credit multipliers throughout the year. 

“Each dollar of storage and data protection revenue will count three times toward tier credit, and hyperconverged infrastructure revenue will count one-and-a-half times. With these multipliers in place for a full year, you can really accelerate your status in our program,” he said. 

How can partners make money? It’s about benefits.

The current rebate structure will continue. What will change, based on partner feedback, is the …

… claiming process on the new business incentive rebate. Going forward, it won’t require a claiming process in any region.  

This year, for rebate incentives, there will be separate categories for storage, data protection and hyperconverged infrastructure. The company also is extending the midrange tech refresh and competitive swap rebates for storage in 2019. 


Dell EMC’s Cheryl Cook

Cheryl Cook, senior vice president, global partner marketing, addressed marketing updates, which she described as streamlining the financial process, driving more efficiencies in administration, and simplification by aligning MDF to rebate calculations. 

Some of the MDF program improvements include: moving to a single payment entity for companies, primarily for companies outside of the U.S.; simplifying proof of execution; and an improved tools capability such as single-click deal registration access on the portal. Additionally, Cook noted the availability of ready-made, media-rich website content for products, campaigns and social media, and an enhanced and unified partner finder — all on the digital marketing platform. 

Dell EMC also is expanding its Test Drive program, which Cook said shortens sales cycles and increases deal size to include: VxRail, X2, Unity, Isilon, PowerMax and DP4400. MDF can be used to leverage Test Drives. 

Requested by partners, Cook announced the Dell EMC Mid-Market Campaign, to generate demand in businesses with 100-500 employees.

“These customers have told us that security is one of the most important things on their minds, so we integrated a comprehensive campaign that includes our client portfolio, our enterprise portfolio, and the unique differentiators around security that exist in those offerings,” said Cook.  

To make it easier for partners to do business with the company, Dell EMC is adding more self-service and automation for process improvements. Sullivan outlined the company’s five partner experience improvement themes for 2019: simplification of the end-to-end process; differentiated support, or finding the right people to help them navigate through the processes and systems; investments in the online experience, particularly in quoting; predictability of engagements; and making it easier to do business across the Dell Technologies companies. 

Bill Scannell, president, global enterprise sales and customer operations, who helped develop and implement the Enterprise Preferred Channel Program last August, addressed enterprise sales, noting the first three quarters of 2018, enterprise business growth exceeded 25 percent. 

“Today, over 60 percent of my $25 billion business is sold with and through [partners], and we see that accelerating with things like the Enterprise Preferred Channel Program and deal registration,” he said, noting this year’s goal of taking more market share.

Marius Haas, president and chief commercial officer at Dell EMC, reiterated that message. He spoke briefly about commercial sales and aggressively creating demand for the company’s products. 

“You saw that in the second half of last year with the [Enterprise] program, which is already showing strong results,” he said. “We’ve already seen 80 partners earn partner-of-record status in an account.” 

Haas said the company is extending partner of record this quarter to previous line-of-business incumbency programs, for net-new business and historically channel-led accounts. 

“In 2019, be more aggressive,” he said. “Bring new accounts to the table, expand the Dell Technologies lines of business you sell and engage with our core teams in the field when you sell.”

At the same time, the company continues to make investments to build partners’ trust. There’s training for internal sales teams on the best ways to engage with partners, and there’s a badging program in the works. 

“[The badging program] rewards team members who pass courses on rules of engagement, leveraging the channel for success, and channel go-to-market programs,” said Mullen.

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About the Author(s)

Lynn Haber

Content Director Lynn Haber follows channel news from partners, vendors, distributors and industry watchers. If I miss some coverage, don’t hesitate to email me and pass it along. Always up for chatting with partners. Say hi if you see me at a conference!

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