The first three criteria covered in Monday’s blog for internet service provider selection were:
- Competitive Compensation
- Customizable Product Solutions
The final four are:
- Tools – Service providers should provide tools that can support prospecting, proposal generation, management of client projects or installs and track commissions. Using a combination of portals, file downloads and templates, the VAR should have access to all of the marketing collateral (print, web, and video) to develop engaging presentations and proposal that move an opportunity to closure.
- Support – while it is common to provide support to channel members through assigned channel managers that should be considered the ante. Full support to channel includes engineering support when needed and an ongoing commitment by the management team to the channel. Deference should be given to the channel when resolving channel conflict between the direct and indirect channel with fairness employed when multiple indirect channel members pursue the same prospect.
- Customer Experience – customer support is the lynchpin to success when any questions regarding a FOC, activation or billing date is communicated. Contacting customer care is not always about fixing something, sometimes they are the source of pertinent information regarding the provisioning of an order. Post the sale, customer care does need to be responsive to any and all issues that arise. Customer service staff needs to be properly trained and backed up by engineering resources to quickly answer questions to avoid the “transfer” syndrome that leads to frustration for the channel member as well as the customer.
- Certification – internal or external training that supports the channel member’s addition of new employees or the need to receive training is very important. For some months, Broadvox discussed developing a certification program and ultimately chose to partner with The SIP School to perform training creating Broadvox Certified Agents. Your partnered ITSP should also want to see you improve in understanding, implementing and supporting IP Telephony. When we do this better, we accelerate the migration from TDM to IP.
Friday we will cover 4 thru 6 or should it be 6 thru 4? I am still trying to get a handle on this Letterman Top Ten thing.