Nokia is attempting to take BlackBerry’s spot as the number one b2b manufacturer in the UK by providing specialist training for channel partners and offering customers a comparable security experience.
The manufacturer has seen business market share rise from nothing to 11.5% over the past two years, and as the Canadian manufacturer continues to lose its grip, channel sales manager Andrew Constable envisaged more growth on the horizon. At Alternative Networks’ FusionLIVE event in London last week, he told Mobile: ‘Our target is to become the ultimate business phone, and I think it’s achievable. By the end of the year we want to increase our market share to 20%, and at the moment it’s looking pretty good.’
Constable said a number of factors had contributed to Nokia’s growing share, not least BlackBerry’s fall from grace and the need for enterprise customers to look for a ‘plan B’. On top of that, the manufacturer has armed channel partners’ customer facing staff with the new Lumia 620, ‘so when a customer asks what phone they’re using they pull out the device’, as well as offering extensive on-site training.
He added: ‘There are a lot of good devices on the market, but in my opinion nothing comes as ready for business as a Windows Phone. A key question we get when people move away from BlackBerry is: ‘Is it secure?’ Absolutely. All our devices are hardware encrypted so it’s safe to put all company sensitive documents on it. You can remote wipe it and enforce passwords.
‘Anyone with an iPhone or an Android handset knows about jailbreaking. It may be cool from a customer point of view to get all those free apps, but from a business point of view that’s a huge back door into your network or systems. The secure boot technology of Microsoft will digitally certify every binary digit of root files, and you get antihack protection as well.’
Constable said the ability to move between multiple Window devices was a plus point for the OS. He added that for customers who had already invested in Microsoft Office for their PCs and laptops, it would ‘make sense if they wanted to replicate the experience on their smartphones’.
Cultivating relationships like the one shared with Alternative Networks is an important part of Nokia’s strategy for Constable. He said: ‘We have a close partnership with Alternative Networks although we’ve only had a commercial relationship with them for the last six to seven weeks. We’ve got some great market share with these guys really quickly.
‘If they’ve got a customer, they’ll tell us how many connections they have, where they are based, and whether they are migrating or joining Alternative; so we’ll run a tech day. It’s not a sales orientated session and I think that’s what works about it, talking about technology and how it helps the customer rather than discussing the commercial side.’
Author: Matthew Campelli