Ingram Micro, MaintenanceNet Aim to Speed Maintenance Service Quotes

By Jessica Davis  |  Print this article Print


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The distributor is adding MaintenanceNet's Integrated Quoting Module to its reseller portal.

Looking to speed up maintenance service contract renewals for VARs so revenue can be recorded sooner, MaintenanceNet has launched an online self-service system as a new component to Ingram Micro's Reseller Services Portal.

Santa Ana, Calif.-based IT distributor Ingram Micro introduced the RSP (Reseller Services Portal) just under a year ago to help resellers and manufacturing partners increase services revenues.

The new component is called the IQM (Integrated Quoting Module), and the companies expect it to expedite time to revenue and to reduce cycles required to generate quotes for maintenance service contract renewals.

"With IQM, the RSP improves quoting efficiency and time to revenue for our solution providers and manufacturers by an order of magnitude," said Justin Crotty, vice president of services for Ingram Micro North America, in a statement.

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IQM offers tabular views that show service contract life cycles, product registration, quote status, quote history and other data. The system allows users to view IT assets by customer, by contract or by SKU to gain visibility into service agreements covering entire IT environments as well as individual products.

Automated e-mail notifications are available to support workflow, a feature that Carlsbad, Calif.-based MaintenanceNet said reduces transaction errors and saves time.

Improving business processes surrounding maintenance services can return substantial margins to the channel, according to Christina Richmond, research manager for IDC.

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"In talking to channel partners of every size, from small to large, IDC has found that service sales are among the most profitable areas of their business, with maintenance services accounting for margins of 20 percent and greater in most cases," she said, in a statement.

MaintenanceNet said it expects a number of OEMs to also use IQM either through the RSP or through other distributor or manufacturer portals.

"Service contract management has traditionally been a bottleneck for distributors such as Ingram Micro, due to the magnitude of information and multiple iterations required for every quote," said Scott Herron, CEO of MaintenanceNet, in a statement.

IQM uses XML-based standards from a new version of the RosettaNet 3A1 Partner Interface Process. RosettaNet is a nonprofit consortium focused on the collaborative development and rapid deployment of electronic business processes for supply chain partners.

Jessica Davis covers the channel for eWeek and Channel Insider. Her technology journalism career began well before anyone heard of the World Wide Web and has included stints at Infoworld, Electronic News/EDN, and the Philadelphia Business Journal. Her work has also appeared on CNN and Forbes.com. She has covered hardware, software and networking, as well as the business side of technology. She has won several journalism awards, including a national ASBPE award for best staff-written column, and was named Marketing Computers hardest working tech journalist on their inaugural list of top tech journalists. Jessica can be reached at jessica.davis@ziffdavisenterprise.com

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