Vodafone: partner programme revamp due to ‘outdated’ system

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This was the view of the operator’s partnerships and alliances director Nick Birtwistle

Vodafone has claimed the decision to revamp its partner programme was fuelled by its previous “outdated” system, leaving partners “ill-prepared” for the latest mobile services.

This was the view of the operator’s partnerships and alliances director Nick Birtwistle who spoke to Mobile News shortly before the latest system went live on January 1.

The platform scraps the original ‘Silver’, ‘Gold’ and ‘Platinum’ tiering in favour of one geared towards unified and total communications, with partners required to demonstrate the ability and expertise to sell across multiple product and service segments.

New levels, in order from bottom to top, are ‘Approved, ‘Specialist,’ ‘Advance’ and ‘Total Communications.’

Investment

Over 100 dealers, including Onecom, PMGC and Olive Communications, are currently on the system. According to Birtwistle, the new “industry- first” programme addressed the recent needs of partners which could not be covered previously.

“This is an industry first from a unified communications perspective and we’re extremely confident it will address all our dealers’ needs,” he said.

“The market is moving towards services such as cloud and IoT. A number of dealers said the old system didn’t represent this and felt they were ill-prepared, didn’t know enough about the market and wanted help.

“We’ve never invested more in the channel. The investment we’ve put into the programme is unprecedented and reflects the importance of the channel.”

More time

The launch follows an accreditation process for the programme which had its deadline pushed back by a month to November. Various dealers who spoke to Mobile News claimed this was caused by Vodafone “over-complicating” the application.

Birtwistle, however, denied this. “I think the message which came out loud and clear was that they [Vodafone partners] wanted a bit more time,” he added.

“I don’t think it was over- complicated. They were given so much material they found valuable and they wanted more time to complete it. We listened. The fact we have approved over 100 partners is testament to that.”

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