What is the Partner to Partner Connect Initiative?
The Partner to Partner Connect initiative opens up IBM’s Ecosystem for all Business Partners and is designed to make it easier than ever for Business Partners to collaborate with one another across the ecosystem to accelerate the creation of joint solutions that enhance client value, meets clients’ needs, and grows their business with IBM technology and solutions.
Why is IBM developing the Partner to Partner Connect Initiative, now?
The market is moving at an ever-increasing speed, while solutions are becoming more complex. As a result, Partners are expected to respond to their client’s needs faster and with more capabilities, Sometimes those capabilities require partnering to address. While Business Partners are already connecting, current approaches can be challenging. IBM is launching P2P Connect. P2P Connect will help Business Partners find the resources and Business Partners in a community ready to address the challenging and continually evolving IT marketplace. Whether it’s to address a current client opportunity or a strategic business development opportunity, P2P Connect is designed to help Business Partners improve their ability to respond to their client.
What kinds of opportunities will IBM Partner to Partner Connect support?
- Give and Receive: Business Partners who have a current opportunity and need to find a capable IBM Business Partner or are looking to offer their unique skills and capabilities to help a Business Partner who has an opportunity requiring assistance.
- Application and Intellectual Property: Clients who require solutions to meet business needs and to differentiate themselves from competition. That means that off-the-shelf solutions might need to be supplemented with customizations the deal-owning Business Partner does not have or wants to build.
- Services Capability: IBM Business Partners who want to tap into the IBM Ecosystem to reach out to other Business Partners to join them in ensuring a successful implementation of services and skills to support a current opportunity or to support strategic expansion of capabilities in strategic areas.
- Sales capability: In a highly competitive marketplace, a clear advantage is knowing the benefits IBM products offer. You and another authorized IBM Business Partner will be able to enhance your sales capability to win a deal by implementing a nuanced approach to beat the competition.
Will IBM’s Partner to Partner Connect initiative create channel conflict and competition among partners?
No, and there are several dynamics that should be considered:
1) The Partner to Partner Connect initiative is designed to provide Partners with assistance in identifying partners for teaming. The business relationships created as a result of these introductions are at the discretion of the partners. The initiative does not interfere or introduce new dynamics in the client-partner relationship.
2) The Partner to Partner Connect initiative is designed to assist partners of all sizes and business models. Solution and niche focused partners may choose to reach out to the broader community of partners to expand their market reach through partners who wish to engage in joint solution development or resell engagements. As an example, a current cloud partner focused on integration can leverage other partners to support server and storage requirements in on-premise private cloud opportunities as well.
3) The Partner to Partner Connect initiative may not be right for all partners and opportunities: In situations where partners have the resources and authorizations to support a particular opportunity, they most likely will not need to partner with another partner and will focus on their current business model to support and fulfill requirements for their customers.
This is also an opportunity for larger partners to find partners with applications and services that complement their portfolio as well as identify partners with niche IP to tailor client proposals for a competitive advantage.