Peter Cannone, new CEO for OnForce, an IT services marketplace, aims to build out the company’s role as the services arm of national resellers such as CDW and his former employer PC Connection.
The company will spend more time informing those direct resellers with nationwide coverage, most of which are adding services or considering the notion, about OnForce’s ability to provide such a services capability and scale without the burden of building it in-house, Cannone said.
“This is an unbelievable value proposition for these companies as well as the overall business marketplace,” Cannone, in New York, told The Channel Insider. “Whether you are a major market services company like CDW and PCC or smaller, you’re looking to expand services. The larger companies [have] major difficulty scaling services. They don’t want the additional payroll and cost of their own bench. With OnForce we provide that scale. My job is going to be about making them aware of what we can do for them.”
CDW and CompUSA are already using OnForce to meet some of their nationwide service obligations and opportunities, according to OnForce records.
OnForce will also expand its Web site in 2007, from a marketplace for IT services to an overall information portal for the IT services community with information such as industry news, software updates and patches. The company is exploring partnering with other organizations to aggregate news and updates, Cannone said.
Cannone’s tenure at OnForce began Jan. 2. He replaces Kevin Gilroy, who announced in December he was leaving after one year to become president of distributor Arrow Enterprise Computing Solutions.
Cannone was senior vice president of sales operations at PCC, overseeing sales to the company’s IT solution provider base in the SMB (small and midsize business), government, higher education and Fortune 1000 sectors.
OnForce operates as a clearinghouse for IT services, allowing users to create a ticket for work to be done at a set price and service providers to bid on the ticket. OnForce charges $11 to submit a ticket and a percentage. OnForce also guarantees billing and payment, as participants must deposit money with the company before accepting bids for work. OnForce then makes the payment.
OnForce now boasts more than 15,000 users and about 5,000 registered IT service providers. Ninety-three percent of users classify themselves as VARs and many have taken to working both ends of the programVARS fulfill service orders for others and bid out work to be done on their behalf in a way that extends their labor or geographical reach, according to OnForce.
IT distributor Tech Data entered into an agreement in November 2006, with then ComputerRepair.com, to provide the members of its TechSelect community of SMB resellers the opportunity to leverage service partnerships among OnForce participants.