School’s Out, but Dell Channel Partners Continue to Learn through Training

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It seems like just yesterday that I posted my "back to school" blog, but ready or not, it's June and school's officially out for summer. Our channel partner program has made some amazing strides since September, and with all these educational themes in my mind, I can't help but share how proud I am of our partners who have taken advantage of Dell training to grow their businesses. We will continue to align our training program to partners’ sales, business and technical requirements to ensure they get the highest level of Dell support and take advantage of discounts, deal registration and incentive programs.

 Attendees at Dell 2015 PartnerDirect Summit Latam Edition

Through our comprehensive training and enablement programs that now include more than 300 unique offerings, completed courses grew to 52K globally in Q1FY16, up 26 percent from Q1FY15. We're proud of our overachievers who take multiple courses, and I'm excited to see that the number of unique students completing courses grew by 28 percent.

Additionally, completion of Dell Competencies — which enable partners to become certified in specific practice areas — increased 14 percent year over year in North America, with more than 1,500 partners globally completing the Network Security Competency alone. This momentum is continuing throughout the year. In Q1 in North America, we launched new Advanced Competencies in Storage, Identity and Access Management (IAM), Core Client Solutions and Workstations, and we expanded the Desktop Virtualization Competency. All of these offer plenty of opportunities for our partners to stay a step ahead of the competition by expanding their knowledge base which pays off – By leveraging all these training opportunities, Dell's top 100 North American partners by training investment grew revenue by more than 40 percent year over year. That's some honors program!

Sticking with the school theme, another factor that comes to mind is "enrollment." Since our Windows Server Migration Campaign started in Q4, 3,000+ partners have enrolled as they realize the business growth opportunities with the end of life of Windows Server 2003.

Also, after Dell announced our improved incentives in Q1, partner participation in the program has been overwhelming. So far, partners have closed deals with more than 3,200 accounts based on new Greenfield discounts on Client, Storage, Server and Networking. By leveraging the Rebate Accelerators program, 300 partners have earned discounts based on storage sales above last year's sales of Dell Storage, Server, Networking and Client. Stay tuned for more on the incentives front as we continue to expand the program throughout the year with more front-end/back-end program credits, partner rep bounty and integration of Dell Software tied to driving new business. Plus we’ll be rewarding partners for retention and reactivation.

 Attendees at Dell 2015 PartnerDirect Summit Latam Edition

Our new fiscal year has started off with a bang and I couldn't be prouder of our channel team and our partners for their continued commitment. Now that school is out, I hope we can all take some time with our families to enjoy the summer. We still have a lot of work to do to make this the best year yet for Dell's partner program, and I'm confident we're on the right track. We always enjoy hearing directly from our partner community, so please comment below on training courses and incentives you find most useful or ideas for new opportunities. I also encourage you to engage with me on Twitter via @CookCherylS.

Cheryl Cook

About the Author: Cheryl Cook

Senior Vice President at Dell Technologies, Cheryl Cook spearheads development and strategy for the Global Partner Marketing organization. Beyond her main global responsibilities for branding, partner program marketing, channel events, partner communications and MDF/BDF program investments and execution, Cheryl drives long-term partner marketing strategy, together with Global Alliances, OEM, and global and regional business teams. A vocal advocate for the partner community, Cheryl is a 20+ year partner veteran, known as an innovative, collaborative leader who creates compelling business solutions that accelerate partners’ success. Prior to her current role, Cheryl served as Vice President, Global Channels and Alliances, leading channel strategy for the company worldwide. Her responsibilities included setting Dell’s partner strategy company-wide, as well as developing and executing channel programs, training, certification, and global marketing programs that enabled partners to grow their business with Dell. Cheryl and her team contributed to the growth of Dell’s global channel business from 33% to over 40% of Dell’s total revenue. Prior to running Dell’s channel business, Cheryl served as Vice President of Enterprise Solutions, where she was responsible for the go-to-market strategy and execution for Dell storage, server, networking and related software businesses. Cheryl has more than 25 years of IT and high-tech experience. Before joining Dell in 2011, Cheryl was Senior Vice President at Nuance Communications managing sales across all lines of business. She also served as Senior Vice President at Sun Microsystems with global responsibility for $6B in enterprise solutions revenue. A contributor to Fortune Magazine’s 50 Most Powerful Women’s community, Cheryl is an active proponent of women in business and technology. Cheryl is the founder and executive sponsor of the Dell Technologies Women’s Partner Network, an initiative that supports and empowers our community of women partners. Cheryl also contributes to Dell’s Women in Action and Dell Women's Entrepreneur Network. Honored by CRN numerous times as one of the Power 100 Women of the Channel, 50 Most Influential Channel Chiefs and Top 100 Channel Sales Leaders, as well as Channel Partners Top Gun 51, Cheryl serves on the board of directors for ARC Document Solutions, is a member of Channel Focus Club 50 and holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Florida.
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