Forcepoint desires an extremely frictionless Channel
The global human-centric cyber security company, Forcepoint aims to grow 70- 80% year on year and wants to make sure channels is successful. This year the company’s approach is very clear and it wants to drive everything through channel. The company wants its partners to be proactive. In a chat with VARINDIA, Anirban Chakravartti, Global Vice President of Channel Sales, Forcepoint discusses about company’s channel, the new partner program and expectation from its partners
Forcepoint considers its channel as a critical piece for its success. The company wants to make a frictionless channel and the partners to be its extended family.
“At Forcepoint, we have a very clear vision that the channel is going to be critical for our success. We have three major priorities - Firstly, to write the products to cloud, secondly, to make sure that the backend operations are seamless and the highest priority for us is frictionless channel.
My job is to make sure that the channel is extremely frictionless and becomes an extended family of Forcepoint. That is my primary goal to begin with and we are putting all our stakes in it. The objective is to make sure channel becomes a force multiplier for us,” explains Anirban Chakravartti.
A new partner program has been launched by Forcepoint to attain the goal. It is very much focused to work with the partners who are interest to work with the company.
“To achieve this, the first thing we did was to launch a new program, the objective of which was very simple. We want to make sure that we partner with channels who are interested in working with us. We are not here for a volume channel play but for a more committed strategic channel play. We want to work with partners where we develop them and their channel,” says Anirban.
Elaborating on the partner program, Anirban describes, “From a program standpoint there are a couple of things which we did. One, we had created a program where we used to have four tiers- Platinum, Gold, Silver and Associate. Now, we have reduced it to three, to keep it very simple- Platinum, Gold and Bronze. If partners want to grow with Forcepoint, we want to make sure we are giving every possible support to the partner.
Secondly, we are making sure of the deal registration. If somebody brings a deal, we want to protect that partner. A key part of the new partner program is the deal registration process. We ensure that the partners’ who bring in large deals benefit from them. During the renewal process, we ensure that the partners’ interests are protected. We have added this process to make sure that partners who are committed to us are rewarded for their loyalty, throughout our relationship. We want to make sure partners who are committed to us, get benefit in the second and the third year.
Third, if you look at platinum, gold and bronze, the program initially was to provide deal registration to the platinum and gold. This year we opened the deal registration to bronze as well. If a small partner wants to grow with us, we would welcome them and give them the same level of support, provided they work closely with us.
We have introduced a new rebate program for our platinum partners globally that aids in their bottom line growth and allow them to invest in joint business development activities like customer advisory and trainings to further grow their business.
The objective is to enable them to be successful not only by giving them the margin, but also giving them investment from our side, which allows them to build a bench of success with us. We do not want a transactional business but consistency in the relationship and trust built in us.”
Expectation from Channel
Forcepoint’s motto is one team strategy which means the company wants to work with its channel as a team to close big deals. In regards to this, the company is coming out with Accredited Services Partners program to help its partners to achieve success.
“We want our channel to be proactively engaged. We want to train them to make sure they are enabled properly and proactively enagaging with us as we want to make sure we are a cohesive organization. If a customer’s RFP comes, we want our sales people, channel team and channel partner to go together as one team. The best results, which we have got for the biggest deals is when we started working together as one team.
We want our partners to feel that Forcepoint is going to help grow their business as one team and that is our motto- one team strategy. If they identify a customer, they can come to us and let our sales team shadow them to help, like the Accredited Services Partners (ASP) program we are coming out with. It is an opportunity for our partners who sell our products and have a strong services capability to participate in our services ecosystem and help drive our customers’ success as an Accredited Services Partner.
In the first couple of deals, we will make sure our technical people are delivering and looking into the delivery model. The ASP model is going to be an absolutely different kind of program which we are developing. The partners will love it,” concludes Anirban.