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Avaya to drive under-performing VARs out of channel

Alex Scroxton

Over 500 under-performing EMEA partners, including an unspecified number in the UK, will be cut in the coming weeks as networking and comms vendor Avaya gets tough with its channel.

At its EMEA partner conference in Berlin this morning, Avaya's worldwide channel vice president Jeremy Butt fleshed out some of the changes it formally announced yesterday, set new revenue thresholds and told partners: "We don't want opportunists and we don't want ambulance-chasers."

One of the new measures of reseller performance to be introduced is customer satisfaction scoring, which has been made mandatory for all partners in Avaya's Connect programme since 1 October.

"You will have to have a minimum number of customer satisfaction surveys [scored] above 3 or 3.1, on a scale of one to five, depending on your level," said Butt. "And I do expect we'll be losing a few more partners during the year based on customer satisfaction, and I'm okay with that."

The vendor will also be canceling all contractual Business Development Funding and moving to a purely discretionary MDF model, said Butt, meaning some partners will get nothing, and others will get a lot more.
 
"We only want to put our money behind the best business plans," Butt explained. "A lot of this money wasn't used last year because partners weren't executing."
 
To help partners develop their business plans, Avaya has introduced partner scorecards that will grade resellers in a number of areas. According to Butt, this will "form part of your interrogation of your business and our joint conversation."
 
"We're expecting our channel account managers to sit with you and your scorecard and have a more aligned conversation about what we want to do and what you want to do. I think you will have a more enjoyable, fact-based conversation," he said.

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