SonicWall's new SecureFirst MSSP program aims to remove uncertainty for the partner.

Lynn Haber

March 27, 2018

4 Min Read

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Customers of all types look to their managed service providers (MSPs) for answers about how to address the critical issue of escalating security threats. With that in mind, SonicWall on Tuesday announced the SecureFirst MSSP Program, designed to help partners answer the call of their customers.

SonicWall’s new SecureFirst MSSP Program is designed to support both new and experienced managed security service providers, help them grow their practices and seize a growing market opportunity.


SonicWall’s Steve Pataky

“As we see a massive, accelerated demand for managed security services in the market – and if you think about the market segments where SonicWall has been particularly strong, such as midmarket and smaller businesses – these are customers that are really struggling to keep up with the threat landscape,” Steve Pataky, senior vice president and chief revenue officer, told us.

The new program is available to SecureFirst silver, gold and platinum partners, and includes options for monthly billing – through SonicWall’s security-as-a-service pricing model – multitenant capabilities and go-to-market branding opportunities. The program will help eligible partners design, launch and scale their MSSP offerings; deepen their customer relationships; increase profitability by offering recurring, consistent revenue streams; and help customers reduce upfront product costs, SonicWall said.

Selling managed security services, however, will pose significant challenges for some partners accustomed to reselling technology, such as how to turn security services into a sustainable offer that they can bring to their customers.

“And then, can I not only build that offer and deliver the right level of security, but can I operate that in an efficient and expeditious way to bring the services to market? And, can I do that in a way that drives the right amount of profitability?” Pataky posed. “That’s why we’re introducing the program.”

Scott McCrady, vice president, global strategic partners at SonicWall, and architect of the SecureFirst MSSP Program, explains what differentiates it from others in the market.

“The traditional model for MSSP programs provides a set of technologies that are multitenanted, in addition to a finance model,” he said.

That approach puts a burden on the VAR looking to become an MSSP or an existing MSSP trying to build new services.

“They have the burden of having to put it all together and how to get it in the market,” McCrady adds.

An SonicWall objective when putting together its MSSP program was to remove the uncertainty for the partner.

McCrady says partners need a business model to launch a new service. They also need to know the different types of services or service-level offerings – such as basic and advanced – and they need to know what customers care about.

With that in mind, SonicWall put together “blueprints” of a service that a partner can launch, from a basic service to a very complex one with multiple elements. The blueprint will offer components such as …

… the service offering, the service-level description and the potential types of services that can be launched. It will also include information on the finance model to help partners set pricing. There will be many blueprints offered over time, McCrady said.

Partners also get a start guide, an architecture guide and advice on branding. There’s also guidance on reports.

“With this holistic, complete from start to finish approach – from how to prime the pump to the architectures and finance models – we know that [our MSSP program] is really different,” said McCrady.

The MSSP program will be based on tiers, with varying requirements from “easy” to more advanced. The goal of offering a tier with “easy” requirements is to attract partners with a commitment to managed services to get started.

“When we launched our SecureFirst Partner Program a little more than a year ago, we always knew that there’d be opportunities for incremental programs that fit in with SecureFirst,” Pataky said. “Then, based on partner desires, the composition of their business, where they want to invest, and what their practice looks like, we keep standing up incremental components to SecureFirst to help them and us together go capture new market opportunities.”

The first incremental program that SonicWall announced, in November, was the Partner Enabled Services Program. The vendor launched a lineup of professional security services that all SonicWall partners could sell to their customers. The new MSSP program is the second.

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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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