By Garrett Jones, Vice President of Global Channel Operations
I had a great time at last week’s Symantec Partner Engage event in Budapest visiting with more than 300 of our top partners from across the EMEA region. In addition to sharing more about our company’s strategy and vision, it was also exciting to share the details around our redesigned Partner Program framework. Built on Symantec’s Global Channel Strategy announced in November, the new Partner Program will better support the way our partners do business by fostering stronger partnerships that enable growth and delivering differentiated value to our customers.
As we consider the breadth of our portfolio, we need partners who are focused on each type of customer across all levels of complexity. We need partners that understand and can solve the needs of an SMB just as much as we need partners with deep relationships in the enterprise space to help with more complex solutions. The new Partner Program addresses these needs and is designed to reward for growth in areas where partners are most capable.
As a part of the redesign, we are introducing Symantec Competencies, an enablement framework that builds upon partners’ existing capabilities to deliver better customer experience through deeper expertise in areas of focus that are aligned to our solutions. How does this work? Partners will build the capabilities required to sell and implement our solutions, and once partners have obtained the capabilities for a given competency, many of the benefits defined in the program become available. As partners meet certain performance standards, the benefits increase, and partners will earn very compelling rewards for growing their business and delivering exceptional value to customers. The competencies are the foundation of the program, and they underpin the program design principals of being customer focused, performance based and more rewarding for our most committed partners.
What else is different about the redesigned Partner Program? With the new Partner Program, we will spend more on financial benefits for the channel than ever before. The program design concentrates the investments more selectively with our top performing partners. We’ve enhanced our Opportunity Registration program and added a performance rebate for growth. We will also offer development funds so we can invest in our partners as they have invested in us.
We’re also enhancing our non-financial benefits to help our partners grow their business and advance customers through the sales cycle. One of the new benefits will be access to the same market intelligence that we use for internal business planning, so we can align our execution with our partners on the same market data and grow together. We will also increase our consulting and technical support benefits and offer more online learning opportunities.
Following the EMEA Partner Engage event, Roger Bär, chief executive officer of Comsoft, shared his enthusiasm with us by stating, “We have maintained a close partnership with Symantec for many years. With their forthcoming redesigned Partner Program, we look forward to the many benefits that will help us secure more business opportunities and position us for success.”
Additionally, Savitha Bhaskar, general manager of Condo Protego shared, “Symantec’s new competency framework will help to distinguish us against our competitors as it reflects a clear understanding of our ability to deliver value and satisfaction.”
We will share more details later this year when we get closer to the official launch. We are being very thoughtful with regards to how partners will transition to the new program and how we recognize our partners’ current investments. As such, we’ve designed a transition period in which current membership status and associated benefits will be maintained throughout the transition.
We built this program by collaborating with partners and adjusting our approach based on the feedback along the way. Our approach will continue to be iterative and evolve to ensure the program provides value and meets the needs and expectations of our partners. Look for more information in the coming months.
In the meantime, I encourage you to check out this video that we debuted at EMEA Partner Engage that gives an overview of the program framework.