Sat in on the CenturyLink Channel Alliance - Get back in the Game Roadshow in Tampa this morning. It was nice to see Stacy Conrad from Microcorp; Josh Anderson and his co-workers from Telephony Partners; Dale Tucker from CCA; and put a face to an old Qwest SE, William Hobbs, now a CCA Emerging Sales Technology Consultant (ETSC) for Florida. Hobbs did a nice job on Why VPDC and The Benefit of Cloud over Colo. The roadshow had 3 parts (Hobbs did part 2):
- New Savvis-CenturyLink Phase II Rules of Engagment overview;
- Cloud/Hosting Solutions portfolio;
- Third Party Data Center Updates/E-Line;
Dale Tucker went over the Rules of Engagement, You definitely need charts and glossaries to follow along the categories and acronymns. Basically, colocation, managed hosting, virtual private data center (VPDC), public cloud, private cloud, and managed servcies (like Hosted Microsoft Exchange) are all available to the Channel to sell at full commission - unless you engage an account exec - then it is HALF!
For agents used to working with AE's, this will be a bummer. However, half is better than zero. Also, with the ETSC as your godfather inside the C-Link-Qwest-Savvis beast, you won't need the AE.
A lot of colo and data center business comes from the Channel.
And for those that do not know how to sell Colocation and Data Center, the TCA has done quite a few webinars, including Getting Your Arms Around the Cloud by Allan Watkins of Total Telecom Management n Atlanta and Let's Talk Colo, moderated by Khali Henderson of Channel Partners magazine and featuring Dany Bouchedid of COLOTRAQ and Chris Palermo of GCN.
Tucker did mention that Savvis is working on a sales certification for colo and hosting. This silo will be a huge focus for C-Link it seems, especially with 54 data centers
Hobbs spoke about not talking about the technology of cloud, but about the business side of cloud, especially cloud services like VPDC and Compute-on-demand. It's about right sizing the data center. It's about OPEX versus CAPEX. It's about DR/BC. It's about getting out of the IT business and back to their own business focus.
C-Link also has an initiative to light up data centers with C-Link network - wave, IP-VPN, MPLS and Internet Bandwidth. There are 154 data centers now. In Jacksonville, FL, C-Link is putting in a ring to connect CSX, Peak10, Colo5 and the C-Link data center on a metro fiber ring. C-Link is also connecting 4 data centers in Charlotte on a metro ring. AboveNet did something similar in Atlanta by connecting almost all the data centers on a metro fiber ring. Agents can easily sell ELine, IQ Port, Private Port and WAVE into these 154 lit buildings.
Hobbs pointed out that the integration is going well with CenturyLink-Qwest-Savvis.