The most important transformation is happening to the customer experience.

Howard M. Cohen, Senior Resultant

April 8, 2019

3 Min Read
Transformer
Shutterstock

By 2025, the average connected person will interface with 4,800 connected devices per day, says Insight Enterprises CEO Ken Lamneck.

“Why is that important to the conversation around how channel partners should be preparing for the future?” he asks. “Because all these connected devices need compute, they need storage, they need networking, and they need security. Ultimately, they need all the things that are part of our ecosystem, and there is incredible opportunity in that.”

How Do Channel Partners Realize Those Opportunities?

Lamneck-Ken_Insight-Enterprises-2019.jpg

Insight Enterprises’ Ken Lamneck

Lamneck, CEO of the system integration and technical services consultancy, acknowledges that the classic value-added reseller (VAR) model still drives a large part of his business, but emphasizes that it’s no longer good enough to just be a “supply chain player.” Clients expect more. He suggests that channel partners planning for the future consider the answers to four questions:

  • How do we help our clients innovate better?

  • How do we help their workforces work smarter and collaborate better?

  • How do they run their workloads more intelligently?

  • How do we help them create more differentiation so they can be more successful in their business, not just for today but into the future?

Lamneck talks about the coming business transformation and how it will clearly separate those who can adapt and succeed from those who can’t. He emphasizes the importance of carefully tracking how your clients’ businesses are changing, and how technology is changing the very way in which they do business.

“The world is shifting from an on-premises IT environment to an as-a-service, subscription model,” he says, and channel partners must change with it. “Just like the cloud has gone hybrid, solution providers need to be [hybrid], too.”

CX: Focus on the Customer Experience

“The customer experience is the new frontier,” says Lamneck, “and our challenge now is to engage with customers on their terms. More often than not today this means digital engagement, and sales teams need to embrace this.”

He counsels that channel partners must field resources that understand how to drive costs out of IT while simultaneously innovating in unique ways — it’s a tactic that’s appealing to clients who aren’t just looking to manage their business but transform it. “That’s where technology can really create a frictionless convergence between sales and marketing, by blending up-front marketing touchpoints with the relationship management of a good sales team. If someone wants to transact digitally, that’s freeing up more time for sales to have the really complex conversations that clients need genuine help solving. When you can provide options that meet the way they want to interact with your company, they’re going to trust you when they need you the most.”

Lamneck’s best advice for channel partners? “Watch how technology trends are changing the needs of our customers and understand how we are evolving our business to help them stay ahead of the curve and stay relevant into the future.”

Value is key, Lamneck says. “You have to offer more value to meet clients at the intersection of where their customers’ and workforces’ demands are met by innovation and new, compelling experiences.”

Lamneck observes that the way in which people want to consume technology forces anybody who’s an innovator of technology to think differently about what they build, where it’s deployed, and how it’s accessed and make sure that solutions are based on business outcomes rather than being product-focused.

“This means thinking less in terms of the white-glove approach and more about enabling self-service by providing (B2B or B2C) consumers the types of content and communication hubs that mirror their shopping preferences,” he says. “When it’s done right, with reliable and actionable information, it translates into a highly personalized and personable experience.”

Read more about:

VARs/SIs

About the Author(s)

Howard M.  Cohen

Senior Resultant

Senior Resultant Howard M. Cohen is a 30+ year executive veteran of the Information Technology industry, an authorized CompTIA instructor, and a regular contributor to IT industry publications. He serves on many vendor advisory panels including the Apple, Compaq, HP, IBM, and NEC Service Advisory Councils. He also serves on the Ingram Micro Service Network board and as a U.S. Board member of the International Association of Microsoft Channel Partners. He is a frequent speaker at IT industry events that include Microsoft’s WorldWide Partner Conference, Citrix Synergy/Summit, ConnectWise IT Nation, ChannelPro Forums, Cloud Partners Summit, MicroCorp One-On-One, and CompTIA ChannelCon. He refers to himself as a “Senior Resultant” because he has always understood that we are all measured only by our results.  Connect with Howard at [email protected] and review his portfolio at www.hmcwritenow.com.
 

Free Newsletters for the Channel
Register for Your Free Newsletter Now

You May Also Like