In an interview with VARBusiness Magazine Wednesday, top Intel executive Shirley Turner, Director of North American distribution and channels discussed specific features of the new channel program designed to help solution providers and systems builders.
Turner stated that the solution providers program has been in existence for 11 years, but was originally was composed of many different programs depending upon the geographical location of the services. The new solution providers program, the Intel Channel Partner Program offers a globally uniform structure that will offer many countries and areas more benefits than previous programs.
The levels of the partnership are Registered member, Associate member and Premier. Previously there were 325 Premier partners and about 10,000 “Active” members and 35,000 registered. The system used to be judged much more on the amount of money spent on products, whereas now it is based on that and many other factors. The biggest change is at the Premier level, which has changed from by invitation only to a web-based system based on the desktop, server or mobile industries. Solution providers can track the progress of their sales and services online and see how much more they need to do in order to achieve the Premier status. Existing Premier partners will keep their status until January 1, 2007, and will have time to achieve the same status under the new guidelines until then. The focus under the new solution providers program is also not on selling just one product, rather diversifying the amount of servers, mobile and desktop systems sold, meaning participants will do better if they do not simply work with one product.
Previously named “Active” members will be shifted to “Associate” status and will receive the opportunity to be badged, where previously only Premiers had that option. The new program will make all members more visible in their communities but also will require stricter qualification guidelines. The goal, according to Turner, is to unify all channel partners, a process she imagines will take several years.
Added By: Computer Consulting Kit