Channel partners play a crucial role in the success of vendors in the Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) space. They help vendors get faster access to markets without tying up much needed investment capital. Thus, it is vital for companies to provide adequate support to its partners to ensure their success. ShoreTel, a trusted provider of telecommunications systems to enterprises worldwide, understands this important relationship. And so they have developed a new program designed to give its partners more control and provide more customer-centric services.
PartnerStart, launched in November of last year, is a program that enables partners to facilitate the installation process for ShoreTel Connect CLOUD customers. Through the program, the partner will be able to serve as the customer’s single point of contact for installations.
Developed with Channel Partner Input
According to ShoreTel, the program was developed in response to the requests of partners who wanted to “deliver a great experience for customers and differentiate their services."
Previously, Connect CLOUD installations weren’t available through partners and were all handled by ShoreTel. Because of this, some partners steered from promoting cloud services because they felt cut off from their customers when the deals were done. With PartnerStart, partners no longer have to feel left out as they now have more control.
Heather Tenuto, vice president of global go-to-market programs and strategy at ShoreTel, said, “Enabling our partners to provide installation of ShoreTel Connect CLOUD services for their end users is a game changer.” “Partners get the opportunity to differentiate from each other and provide customer-centric services, previously provided by ShoreTel. This increases customer satisfaction while shifting top-line revenue to the partner’s business. With PartnerStart, everyone wins,” Tenuto added.
How to Join the Program
The PartnerStart program is available for partners in ShoreTel’s Enabled tier. The program will require certification; however, ShoreTel will provide all the necessary tools and training. Partners will also have access to a project manager who will provide personalized assistance.
ShoreTel reiterates that the process isn’t onerous, though. They only require at least one person from the partner company to go through the certification process. The representative will then learn the implementation process for ShoreTel Connect CLOUD as well as other relevant information needed to help them manage the entire sales process from prospect to close.
A good number of ShoreTel’s partners have already expressed their interest in the program.
Chris Frey, vice president of operations at Converged Technology Professionals, a ShoreTel Platinum partner, had this to say about the program:
“Based on the sales process, we have a strong understanding of the customer and a personal relationship with them, so it makes perfect sense to provide them with a higher level of assistance in the installation phase.” “By being the customer’s primary contact throughout design, discovery, installation and training we’re able to provide red carpet customer service while bringing in an additional revenue stream,” he added.
Alan Burdine, president of CRI, a Gold ShoreTel partner, also said:
“With PartnerStart, ShoreTel is declaring the value and necessity of the partner in the UCaaS space and providing the opportunity for all customers to obtain a consistent, high-touch service experience no matter what type of Connect deployment option they choose.”
For more information about the PartnerStart program, please visit ShoreTel’s website.
ShoreTel is an award-winning provider of business telephony and unified communications (UC) solutions. ShoreTel’s solutions are built for small and mid-market companies that seek to simplify their business communications. Because they recognize the unique communication needs of enterprises, ShoreTel gives their customers the freedom to choose from their premise-based IP phone system, cloud-based communications system, or a combination of both. ShoreTel is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California, and is working towards bringing their cloud solutions to other parts of the globe, including the UK, New Zealand, and Australia.