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10 Ways Channel Partners Can Up their Game in UC

Understand the Business DriversUnderstand the Business Drivers

45% of businesses do not have an integrated solution for voice, video and data. Among those businesses, only 11% are considering it. To leverage this business opportunity, channel companies need to understand the client’s needs on the business side.

Build Relationships Beyond ITBuild Relationships Beyond IT

89% of IT managers don’t see new UC tools as a priority, and do not see a return on their initial investment. Channel companies need to train their sales forces to have more conversations on the business side; otherwise, UC will always be driven by IT departments that don’t often think about what the benefits are for the business.

Making More Than One Use CaseMaking More Than One Use Case

58% of employees said they’re not consulted on the tool’s usefulness post-implementation. One-third don’t receive training, and of those who do, 50% said they get less than 30 minutes. Channel companies can broker improved communications between IT and business. Most times, IT and business, such as marketing and sales departments, speak very different languages and have different concerns.

Setting Up to SucceedSetting Up to Succeed

77% of employees said their organizations do not consult with them before selecting a new office communications tool. Channel companies can help facilitate a dialogue about the needs of the business and employees in advance so there is a greater chance of success.

Making the Right Tech DecisionsMaking the Right Tech Decisions

72% of employees who are consulted feel their communications tools make them more productive, compared with 54% of those who are not. Channel companies need to dig deeper and take the time to understand what their clients’ employees need, how they go about their day-to-day activities, what would make their jobs easier and what tools would make them more productive.

Driving Higher Usage and AdoptionDriving Higher Usage and Adoption

71% of employees said, at most, they use half of a communications tool’s features. It’s not a question of rolling out the technology and presenting the features and functionality. Channel companies need to help companies evolve their training for usage and adoption to help employees understand how the technology fits into their day-to-day life.

Don't Underestimate the Value of TrainingDon’t Underestimate the Value of Training

38% of employees said they have access to communications tools they don’t know how to use and will never use. Channel companies can fill this void by educating the client on what the value is on training from a usage and adoption standpoint. If employees don’t get properly trained, they don’t adopt, and therefore, companies don’t see a return on investment.

Realistic ExpectationsRealistic Expectations

44% of IT managers found it difficult to implement a UC solution. Many IT departments have unrealistic expectations about the technology, and most try to go after best-of-breed solutions and pair together multiple vendors. This results in a big increase in the types of skills they need to implement the solution, along with making ongoing support much harder and very difficult to budget. Channel companies need to start the discovery process around what the business is trying to achieve.

Building Soft SkillsBuilding Soft Skills

54% of IT managers said they seek the help of third-party solutions providers for UC implementations. Channel companies need to provide softer, nontraditional skills, such as helping clients determine measurable success of business requirements and objectively evaluate different options available.


Four out of five IT managers said less than 25% of support calls are related to malfunctioning communications, while two out of three think UC solutions are easy to manage post-implementation. A channel partner’s role goes beyond just getting a UC solution up and running. They should have the skills to help determine the right solution, implement the solution and then manage the solution.