Rubrik overhauls partner program to reward partners for high-value activity with customers

The new partner program uses a point system to not only reward for the usual things like sales and certifications, but for doing high value work with customers like ransomware assessments, even if they do not immediately lead to a sale.

Ghazal Asif, Vice President of Global Partners and Alliances at Rubrik

Cloud data management and data security vendor Rubrik has launched their Rubrik Transform Partner Program, which they believe has features that take it beyond the expected norm of such things, and will improve partners’ ability to be trusted advisors and make more high value sales. The new program uses a points scoring system which rewards partners for conducting things like ransomware resilience testing with prospects and customers that will spread Rubrik’s messaging about how to best defend against cyberattacks, even then these do not immediately lead to a sale.

“We felt it was really important to align the program with securing the world’s data by addressing major trends in cyber in intersection, where ransomware is one of the bigger threats,” said Ghazal Asif, Vice President of Global Partners and Alliances at Rubrik. “The old program didn’t do that. It was based solely on rewarding partners for the bookings and certifications that they produced.”

The Rubrik Transform Partner Program uses a points-based scoring system, but it just doesn’t convert the old enablement requirements into points, to produce an effect like companies who ‘change’ their partner programs by replacing the names of their metallic tiers with something else.

“We are leveraging a points-based scoring system, and partners do get points for bookings and certifications, but those are table stakes things,” Asif said. “Partners  that deliver high value assessments like ransomware assessments have an opportunity to level the playing field because they receive points for this. Partner programs generally don’t reward the value in things like ransomware resilience labs.” The partner is rewarded even if the activity does not result in a sale right away.

Another of these activities is called Save the Data.

“It is our experiential table top exercise,” Asif stated. “It allows people within a partner organization, or a customer, to experience what happens in an organization in the first 24 hours of a ransomware attack.”

The new program has three tiers. The entry-level Authorized Partner tier has a set of discount advantages for uncovering and driving registered approved end user opportunities, and gives partners quarterly sales incentives for uncovering net-new opportunities.

The Elite Partner tier, which is triggered by accumulating a minimum threshold of points, provides additional financial benefits to reward performance for uncovering and closing net-new opportunities to Rubrik.

Finally, the Elite+ Partner tier for top performers provides customized incentives and business development investments, including marketing development funds and Rubrik dedicated resources, by completing an investment plan with their regional channel development team.

“The difference from before is how you get into the 3 Tiers, as doing work that adds resiliency can make you Elite,” Asif said. “We want to see more value-add activities.”

Certification and training has been modernizing, but had not fundamentally changed.

“If anything, we are trying to simplify training and enablement and have more available online,” Asif indicated. “We also redid the partner portal so they can have a more streamlined experience.”

The shift to rewarding partner activities with customers even when they do not lead to sales is the real key here, she said.

“What this new program does is enable partners to build cyberresiliency, and that will be rewarded by status in our program.