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For most of its 10-year existence, Kirkland,
Wash.-based Bocada has been selling its
data protection management software direct to large organizations, but it felt
it wasn’t reaching its potential customer base, says CEO
Nancy Hurley. She tells Channel Insider the company, which competes with the
likes of Symantec and EMC, has more than 250,000 clients managed in
Fortune 1000 companies, but it didn’t believe it had the footprint needed. 

Click here for eWEEK Labs review of Bocada Prism, plus add your own review.

"This is something that every organization should need,” she said. “Small,
medium or large companies all back up their data, and with mid-to-large
organizations, there are typically multiple backup solutions … [and] it’s
difficult to manage all of them." That’s where Bocada comes in, offering a
heterogeneous centralized backup reporting solution.

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So Bocada went back to its customers to find out why they were buying from
them, and then went back to the drawing board to create a product that was
easier to sell through the channel. The customers said they went from 80
percent backup success rates and as many as 30 people to manage to 99 percent
success rates and a 50 percent reduction in staffing requirements. The key was focusing
on managing service levels, "a service mentality."

Hurley says the company understood it didn’t have the reach to penetrate a
larger audience, and the realization that its value proposition was mainly
about service made it a no-brainer to move to a channel model. So the Prism
DPSM (Data Protection Service Management) solution was launched in January, and
this week the company is unveiling its first formal channel program.

"Strategically, we built our product around going after the channel. We wanted
to make it friendly for the channel in two ways—easy to sell, easy to demo, but
more importantly, something they can sell around, actually help them sell
additional products. It really lends itself to selling services."

Bocada has been working with Channel
Chargers
to build out its channel since June. "I’m really excited
about shifting the majority of our sales to the channel this year."

Targeted at resellers and managed service providers, the Bocada Partner Program
provides all the usual features of a top-flight program, says Hurley. It
includes marketing programs to help generate demand, sales presentations for
customers, product demonstration programs, product reference materials with
quick guides for easy review, strong margins, and opportunity registration and
lead tracking programs.

The business opportunity for the channel is huge, she adds. Of the large
installed base, 92 percent of customers would recommend Bocada to peers.
Administrative task costs are reduced 40 percent, and capital costs are cut by
30 percent. "The reduction in actual backup costs is quite significant and
immediate." Hurley says even more important is the ability to meet SLAs
and meet customer satisfaction requirements.