New EMC Federation deal reg, rules of engagement to be launched

EMC is also announcing several other programmatic moves, including a Federation Ready designation and expanding EMC’s EMC Ready sales transformation initiative to partners. Their EMC True loyalty program pilot is now being publicized and expanded globally.

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Gregg Ambulos, EMC’s Senior Vice President, Global Channel Sales

LAS VEGAS – Today, at EMC’s Global Partner Summit, the EMC Federation took centre stage, with Gregg Ambulos, EMC’s Senior Vice President, Global Channel Sales, highlighting changes in the EMC Federation’s channel policies, which will encourage partners to engage in Federated Solutions which combine the offerings and abilities of the members of the EMC Federation – VMware, RSA, Pivotal, and VCE.

Last year’s event featured the announcement of EMC’s new Business Partner Program, which went live in January.

“It has been well received,” Ambulos said. “We had a complex program before, and we really simplified it, to make it more predictable, simple and profitable. Partners now have one goal, instead of multiple goals, and they get paid now on almost everything from dollar one, whereas before they had to hit the goal before they got into money.”

The new program last year also provided rewards for partners who made broad investments within the EMC Federation. This year, however, the promotion of the Federation is the core of the announcement.

“What’s new for 2015 is the power of the Federation,” Ambulos said. “What we are doing here is working with our Federated partners on establishing things to make it a frictionless experience for our partner community and our customers.”

This emphasis is not just programmatic. Ambulos said that Jeff Casale, a long time VMware and EMC sales executive, has been put in a new role, reporting directly to Joe Tucci, to head up taking the Federation companies to market most effectively.

On the programmatic side however, a key initiative is being announced – a deal registration program exclusively around the Federated Solutions – originally called EVP solutions (for EMC, VMware and Pivotal) when they first appeared last year. They now consist of federated hybrid cloud, security analytics and business data lakes.

“We are establishing a deal registration program just around the Federated solutions, and the target date to go live is July 1,” Ambulos said.

“In concert with the deal registration program, we will also be establishing Federation rules of engagement, which will be a subset of the rules of engagement we have at EMC,” Ambulos added. “It has a target date of July 1 as well.”

Ambulos also announced a Federation Ready designation, which a partner achieves by completing the sales, technical and services requirements around a Federated solution. They will also get a Federation lead assigned to them, a designated person who could come from any of the Federated companies.

“Something like this is important, because partners want to strive for the highest levels of the program,” Ambulos said. “Part of it is the prestige, and the differentiation it provides with customers. Part of it is financial – they make more money. They will also get some additional benefits from the Federated companies, although these have not yet been finalized. We are working those through right now.”

Ambulos said that the Federation Ready designation will be available immediately to Platinum and Gold partners, with the plan being to eventually expand it to Silver as well.

“Right now, anyone can sell a Federated solution, even an Authorized partner,” he said. “We want to ensure anyone who wants to be Federation Ready can be.” He indicated that logistical issues of scalability are the only reason eligibility isn’t immediately opened up to everybody.

Another new programmatic element, which has been spearheaded by Scott Millard, Vice President, Americas Channel Sales, is expanding EMC’s EMC Ready sales transformation initiative to channel partners.

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Scott Millard, EMC’s Vice President, Americas Channel Sales

“We are now in our fourth year of doing EMC Ready events twice a year, in which we train our internal team on our latest messaging,” Millard said. “It is part of an effort to transform our sales force from product to solution orientation in focus. This is now being opened up to partners, and we are working on a process now to implement it.” Millard, who assumed his present role in January, which is now being announced, fills a void which had been managed by having Ambulos do double duty for a year, after Millard’s predecessor, Leonard Iventosch, left the company.

Finally, EMC is now publicizing a loyalty program – EMC True – that was implemented two months ago in a soft launch.

“This is a first ever for EMC,” Ambulos said. “Some partners are looking to place even a bigger bet with EMC and we want to reward them for it.” Two types of partners will be eligible, partners who are exclusive with EMC, and partners EMC deems as ‘Loyal,’ meaning that 80 per cent of their storage and backup revenues come from EMC.

“Since we came up with this two months ago, as a pilot, over 10 per cent of our Silver, Gold and Platinum partners have applied and qualified,” Ambulos said. It has been available in North America to date, but will now be expanded globally where it is legal to do so. In the EU, benefits for exclusivity are not legal.

Ambulos said the benefits are substantial, including additional rebates, free certifications, and more co-op money.

“These aren’t soft dollars,” he said. “These are material benefits.”