Vodafone is launching a revenue share scheme and introducing a new partner category to promote the sale of unified comms.
The operator is pledging a substantial increase in spending across a number of areas as it bids to grow its enterprise business. It unveiled its plans at a conference prior to its Partner of the Year Awards in central London earlier this month.
Vodafone is currently in discussions with partners about how the revenue share proposal will work and has earmarked an October launch for the scheme. Its new category for unified comms experts is called Solution Specialists. Described by head of partner services Rob Mukherjee as a ‘really big step’, the operator will offer additional marketing support and priority training for partners who qualify. The accreditation will be open to all partners, from Platinum to Silver, although Platinum partners must qualify as Solution Specialists in order to retain their status.
Vodafone will initially require these Solution Specialists to be experts in its One Net solution but it will be extended to the likes of Microsoft Office 365 in the future.
Vodafone director of small business Tim Stone claimed the operator had put the problems that beset the launch of One Net behind it. He said: ‘What I can say is the product is now working fantastically well. We have done a massive amount of development work on the product and have developed what is the leading product in the marketplace and an exciting one.’ He declined to reveal the exact number of One Net partners but said there were ‘huge’ sales in the UK and ‘massive’ sales across Europe.
Stone (pictured) confirmed that the operator was offering greater rewards for partners selling One Net products. He said: ‘The better commercials will result in our partners earning more money.’
Vodafone will hold further workshops showcasing One Net to partners at its Newbury headquarters and in a series of seminar days across the UK.
The operator also announced plans to train partners in the sale of unified comms. Mukherjee said a quarter of Vodafone Enterprise’s learning and development budget would be spent on this training, which he described as a ‘huge investment’ by the company. Vodafone is also extending the opening hours of its partners’ customer service team, as well as introducing field-based service management for partners’ high value customers.
Stone said the company was investing heavily in this enterprise push due to the increasing demands on workplaces.
He added: ‘The vision of the wider company is changing how Britain works and already we are starting to do that. That vision is now in action through enabling companies to work in better ways. What we are doing is giving the tools to partners to assist them and change how they work.’
Mukherjee said: ‘The backdrop to this is we are in a challenging economic environment and the working world is changing significantly. But there is a massive opportunity for a company like us.’