Lenovo has introduced a new partner services program called Blueprint that the PC maker says distinguishes it as a channel friendly vendor, even as other hardware vendors such as Dell and HP, which have acquired their own services businesses such as Perot Systems and EDS, have created concern about channel conflict.
“There’s a lot of angst and anxiety over rules of engagement,” Jay McBain, director of SMB at Lenovo told Channel Insider. “We’ve declared publicly we are not looking to buy a big services company, and that makes us a little different in the eyes of the channel.”
Lenovo is taking that one step further with the creation of Blueprint. The new services program designates that 100 percent of services business will be led by channel partners. Partners can create their own offerings, specializing in particular areas, and then turning to Lenovo services to fill in any gaps, and be rewarded for reselling those services. Services available from Lenovo include all PC lifecycle offerings from deployment to maintenance to recycling at end of life.
“Lenovo will not compete with the channel on services. It is their domain,” McBain said. “They understand the customer at a local level. They understand the industry.”
Blueprint includes performance incentives, providing resellers with up to 10 additional discount points on the standard discount they receive when they sell Lenovo Priority Support, which provides direct access to advanced level technicians for break/fix warranty issues.
Lenovo said that resellers can bundle an onsite upgrade or ThinkPad Protection for a complete solution and increased earning opportunity.
In addition, Lenovo has developed another program to reward resellers who are expanding their services business with data protection and lifecycle services. Those participating in Lenovo’s Influencer Program can earn between 7 and 12 percent of the invoiced amount for services including Online Data Backup Enterprise Edition, Deployment Services, Imaging Services and Asset Recovery Services.
Online Data Backup offers secure, off-site storage. Deployment services can include migration planning, factory integration and imaging, delivery and installation. Separate Imaging Services can be provided to support businesses’ requirements for developing, managing and maintaining several images across different hardware, operating systems, languages, network drivers and business applications, Lenovo said. Lenovo’s Asset Recovery Services focus on de-installation, secure data wiping and recycling and refurbishment.
Lenovo has also created the Lenovo Services Sales Support Center for resellers, providing a single point of contact. The center fields questions from resellers’ sales teams about the Lenovo services portfolio.
Separately, Lenovo announced a distribution agreement with Brightpoint, a wireless distributor that serves wireless phone stores. The deal will place Lenovo PCs with embedded wireless in those retail locations and will allow those wireless resellers to share the bounty paid by carriers for turning on service.