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View from the channel: Alastair Adams, Director, Commercial Group

Q: What are your customers most interested in?

A: Our clients want to know that we are a long-term partner with whom they can work on a strategic rather than a transactional basis, to deliver against an agreed set of organisational objectives. They want to work with fewer, trusted suppliers who take time to understand their organisation and provide relevant insights as to how they can help the client become more effective on an ongoing basis.

Q: Do clients have the same understanding of industry terms, such as BYOD, MPS or MDS, as we do?

A: The definitions change and evolve so our approach is to focus on understanding the specific business requirement and explaining how we can help, using language the client can really understand.

Q: Where are you seeing most traction at the moment, are there any verticals that are particularly strong?

A: There are always market pressures which help support the need to find smarter ways to work and technological advances mean that there are new and exciting ways to capitalise on those opportunities. There are of course particular dynamics at work in specific vertical markets and it is up to us to know our clients’ business well enough to spot how we can help support innovation.

Q: When selling MFPs, what are the most popular software solutions you provide and why?

A: We try to focus on business requirements first and solutions second. In our experience it is essential to test how software works in conjunction with the device as this has not been done during the manufacturing process and as a result there are typically some challenges to be overcome!

Q: Where do you get information on the latest products and solutions, and do you feel that the OEMs are doing enough to educate their channel partners?

A: This is a challenge because there is so much information which needs to be updated all the time. The use of video to support self development and learning is increasing and those vendors who make it easy for us to understand their solutions and gain certification are going to be better promoted. Professional services consultants are expensive resources so there will always be pressure on availability.

Q: Is your patch particularly competitive – is it national or local competition that you face?

A: Competition is ever present and there are few barriers to entry: we try to focus on making our own proposition as strong as possible and research our prospects well to try to find organisations whose profile best matches our offer.

Q: How do you spend your week – time on phone, face to face meetings with customers etc.?

A: I enjoy seeing clients face to face to ensure our offer is as relevant as possible and try and ensure I am out 2-3 days per week.

Q: What would make your job easier?

A: Getting decisions right first time, every time!

www.commercial.co.uk

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