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Sage vows to curb complexity for partners

At Sage Summit 2016 in Chicago, vendor admits to unnecessary complexity in the past, and promises partners that it will do better

Sage has vowed to make it easier for channel partners to work with, after admitting “constant change and complexity” has soured its relationship with partners in the past.

Speaking at its annual customer and partner conference in Chicago, Sage Summit 2016, the accountancy software giant’s EVP, partners & alliances, Alan Laing, said he had overseen a 12-month restructure of the firm’s partner programme to make it less complex for partners.

Most significantly, this saw the consolidation of 54 separate partner programmes worldwide into just one global programme, which was launched in October 2015.

“One infrastructure, one set of assets, one set of benefits so you can focus on taking your customers on a journey, to help grow your business,” said Laing.

Previous convoluted working practices included partners that were looking to sell more than one product would have to sign multiple contracts, with different terms and conditions for each – a hangover from previous acquisitions by Sage that spawned multiple sales teams and programmes.

In addition to this, partners had demanded “a product roadmap [they] can rely on”, more demand and lead generation, and greater brand awareness from the firm, particularly in North America.

“We are here, to fix that for you, fast,” Laing told 2000 assembled partners. “Sage is serious about partners.”

As if to demonstrate the point, Sage CEO Stephen Kelly, pledged to increase the vendor’s worldwide revenue from partners from 38 percent to 45 percent, although the time-frame for this wasn’t revealed.

“We anticipate partners increasing dramatically your contribution as a proportion of Sage’s total revenue,” he said.

Elsewhere the vendor said it added 150 new ISVs to the Sage Marketplace in its first 100 days, and continues to sign up one new ISV a day.

“The cloud has commoditised some elements of the value chain. So we need to help you find ways to differentiate and take advantage of the growth,” said Kelly.

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