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Sage Software has extended for another year its 100/100 program in an effort to add 100 new salespeople to its channel.

The program, providing $11,000 to 100 selected partners to find, hire, train and support a new member of its sales force, kicks off its third year Sept. 1, Taylor Macdonald, Sage’s executive vice president of sales and channel operations, revealed to Channel Insider.

Forty percent of participating VARs had reached the previous year’s sales figures in six months, Sage said.

100/100, coupled with separate programs to qualify and mentor salespeople, is designed to generate more qualified leads at the partner level, where they are more likely to lead to partner sales than publisher-generated leads, Macdonald said. The effort requires more feet on the street.

“One of the things we hear when we talk to partners is business is booming, but we need more consultants, and they think that’s as easy as placing an ad and waiting for a couple of salespeople with six years experience to just move to their town,” Macdonald said. “Historically, we know that anyone good is already employed, and when you make a bad hire, you’re taking two steps back.”

100/100 provides $500, plus a 50 percent match for the second $500, for candidate assessment and profile by Opus Marketing, an executive hiring firm; free registration at Sage Sales Academy (valued at $1,295); and workbooks, tools, access to Peer Advisors and participation in 100/100 peer group calls. Partners receive $8,000 once a candidate completes Sage Sales Academy.

The program is open to resellers that have, among other requirements, achieved one of Sage’s top three partner designations and closed six deals within the last 12 months.

100/100 aims to boost performance among Sage’s mid-performing partners, where there is ample room for growth, Macdonald said. The Sage channel counts 6,000 resellers.

For Sage’s revenue to grow, vendors need increased productivity from the middle of the partner pack, he said.

“The top of your channel will continue to be successful,” he said. “But you get to a certain size and you’re only gaining 10 to 12 percent a year. A partner closing two to three deals a year, by doing things a little differently, can begin closing 15 to 20 deals a year.”