IBM believes the channel has a major role to play in helping it transition to the next generation sales model.
With resellers coming under increasing pressure to move away from product pitches to a consultancy and services approach vendors are also facing similar challenges.
David Kay, vice president of global business partners at IBM Europe, said that the market was changing and that included the relationship between vendor and reseller.
"Some of our traditional partners, with some good hires, can lead IBM into new markets and not follow us," he said.
He added that internally IBM had a way to go to get its own teams up to speed and it was making a similar transition.
Kay added that most of its partners had started to make moves away from a traditional approach but he felt some could speed things up.
"Many are well down the road but there are not enough of them and I do worry about some of them," he said.
The need to adapt was not just confined to the reseller tier and Kay went on to point out that distribution also needed to speed up its ability to support a different approach to the market.