The new resources include two net new Alliance Director positions, which are being filled by Nisa Spyker, who comes from Cisco and Matt Biehler, who has had partner management roles at Bluecore and Datadog.
San Francisco-based BigPanda, which focuses on event correlation and automation within the AIOps [Artificial Intelligence for IT Operations] space, has announced the expansion of their partner program, with new resources in the form of additional personnel and increased enablement tools.
“BigPanda was designed to solve a specific problem in the AIOps space, which is a very broad space that is still being defined and understood,” said Paul Szymczyk, vice president of sales, North America, at BigPanda. “AIOps involves the application of AI to tools that help IT Operations do their tasks, and really falls into three distinct buckets.”
These are: traditional monitoring and observability; top of the stack collaboration tools, including service desk, notification, and collaboration; and in between these two layers, event correlation and automation, which is where BigPanda plays.
“Event correlation involves taking the hundreds of thousands of data points and using event management to consolidate those into a small number of incidents,” Szymczyk, said. “We are focused on that correlation and automation piece of the puzzle. We don’t do monitoring, or service desk, and we aren’t looking to move up or down the stack.”
Enterprises are BigPanda’s sweet spot.
“We work with larger organizations and some medium sized ones, especially digital-native ones,” Szymczyk indicated. “You really need to be a good-sized company to feel the pain that we are able to solve, by taking tons of data from many sources.”
Several factors have converged to make this an optimal time for BigPanda to double down on its channel commitment.
“The channel has always been a part of our sales motion, but what we have found in the last 12 months or so is that we are getting more pull with multiple different partners,” Szymczyk said. “We help them understand how to position AIOps as a solution to solve real world problems for their customers. The channel has grown in importance here because customers use their channel partner now for information for defining AIOps strategy. That’s why we have chosen this time to make these investments.”
Pressure on organizations created by COVID-19, the rapid move to Work From Home, and general market conditions caused by shutdowns also play to BigPanda’s strengths.
“COVID and Work From Home and their impact on the economy has made our technology more important than ever,” Szymczyk said. “I’m seeing two things from customers. One is that the budgetary and expense side of the business have issues that need to get solved. The other is the need to free up IT resources to work on innovation rather than break fix. The only way to do both is to take resources from triage and playing defense and shift them to offense and innovation. That’s what we are very good at. So it made all the sense in the world to double down and increase resources.”
These start with the hiring of Nisa Spyker and Matt Biehler as BigPanda’s first Alliance Directors, with Spyker covering the western region and Biehler the east.
“This is a multipronged approach,” Szymczyk noted. “We brought in seasoned individuals to develop strategic plans for engagement with each of our channels – so we can focus on the right partners.” Key partners that Biehler will work with include AHEAD, CDI, and Datadog, one of his former employers. The partners Spyker will work with include AWS, Sirius, NTT Data and Trace3.
“We are investing in people to come help our partners, across our entire organization, which goes beyond the new directors,” said Cari Jaquet, BigPanda’s VP of Marketing. “We have put together an enablement strategy and program. On the marketing side, we are bringing in marketing funds for partners, a system of distributing leads, and we are addressing how they access our deal registrations. Some of these components are under development and some have already been done. The new directors will drive velocity of the program, but the components to enable this are already under way.”
In addition to strengthening their reseller ecosystem, BigPanda is also increasing their investment in strengthening integrations with technology partners like AWS, Datadog, AppDynamics and LogicMonitor.
“We are focusing a lot on integrations,” Jaquet said. “We are placing as much emphasis on strategic partners as the VAR channel. We have an open integration hub so we can integrate with anyone, but we really focus on deepening ones that our customers ask us to do – so they don’t have to do that themselves downstream.”
BigPanda’s focus is on a select group of core partners, but they are expecting that the new channel push will bring in more quality ones.
“Just this week alone, we got four new inquiries,” Jaquet stated.