CA Names Names: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

By Elliot Markowitz  |  Posted 2005-04-07 Print this article Print

Opinion: CA's new grand plan for the channel may work, but the company will have to take extra care it doesn't create conflict with partners.

Computer Associates has unleashed a grand channel plan, in the midst of a complete reorganization, that will effectively give the companys direct sales force preferred access to more than 12,000 corporate accounts. Im here to tell you the good, the bad and ugly parts of this strategy; and believe you me, there is plenty of all three to go around. Naming preferred accounts is a double-edged sword in my book. I would be the first person to agree that whenever there is an entrenched direct sales force in place, rules of engagement must be established and they need to be clear, with no gray areas, or it will result in confusion. And confusion results in lost business, for the vendor and for the channel. Click here to read about the new era getting under way at Computer Associates.
Who takes the lead on specific accounts, who is the direct point of customer contact and exactly what role a vendor sales representative plays, along with the services offered by a channel partner, are critical to ensure the success of a project and the ultimate satisfaction of any given customer. If a VAR feels he is competing for business inside an account with a vendor that he/she is representing, that VAR will eventually push another suppliers wares.
VARs are about solutions, yes, but they are also about making money and not supporting a company that is sabotaging their business. Now dont get me wrong. That is not what I am saying CA is doing. Au contraire, mon frère. What I am saying is there is a lot of history between the channel and direct sales initiatives of all kinds. Read the full story on The Channel Insider: CA Names Names: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
Elliot Markowitz Elliot Markowitz is Editorial Director of Ziff Davis Media eSeminars responsible for the editorial content of all eSeminars. Markowitz is a 14-year publishing veteran and was previously Editor-in-Chief of CRM Magazine and the website and related live events. Before CRM Magazine, he was Business Editor at TechTV, responsible for helping to manage the TV station's website as well as conducting live on-air interviews with key industry executives.

Markowitz also spent 11 years with CMP Media's award-winning weekly newspaper Computer Reseller News (CRN), where he held many key editorial positions including News Editor, Business Editor, and Senior Executive Editor. In 1999 he was named Editor of CRN, responsible for the entire editorial operation of the newspaper and in charge of coordinating its redesign and re-launch in June 2000. While at CRN, Markowitz initiated many key alliances including the Industry Hall of Fame event in Las Vegas and the annual CRN/Raymond James Conference. Early in his career Markowitz was a news reporter on Long Island for the Massapequa Post.

He holds a B.A. in journalism from Hofstra University and is a graduate of the Stanford Professional Publishing Course.

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