Posted on 13/07/2012
Unravelling the connectivity conundrum and embracing ‘an explosion of data’ are some of the biggest reseller challenges in today’s increasingly data centric world, says Nimans.
“Bandwidth is more accessible in terms of cost, whilst connectivity is now more stable thanks to products such as EFM (Ethernet First Mile) - providing more resilience and speed (especially uploads) to the customer,” said Head of Networks, Mark Curtis-Wood. “There’s a growing trend towards deploying larger bandwidth which helps deliver more flexible customer solutions.”
He continued: “There’s still a knowledge gap out there. There are lots of resellers looking at transition but they are not all sure how. Annexe M, EFM and FTTC are part of a host of phrases that not everyone understands, as there are many ways to accelerate and enhance network capabilities and performance. Data solutions require a different mindset to traditional upfront sales.”
Mark emphasised: “Next Generation Access provides the ability for users to take advantage of some of today’s bandwidth hungry applications. It provides the capability to do more, quicker. It’s important for resellers not to worry too much about the acronyms but think carefully about what their customers are trying to achieve - and understand the key technical implications and requirements of different technologies.”
He says specialist aggregators are emerging where the focus is on quality and service as well as choice. “One of the major developments surrounds education and training of resellers. That’s an area of ultimate focus because there are resellers that understand they need to make a change into new and emerging markets but they are not always sure how to bridge the skills gap.
“The challenge for resellers is to ensure they have the capability and capacity to deliver everything their customers require. Often resellers do not have the resource or knowledge to sell the complete range of solutions. They’ve got the depth of relationship with their clients but they don’t always have all the tools in the bag to deliver what is needed. In reality most resellers will struggle to gain the best commercial rates through direct relationships with carriers simply because they don’t deliver enough volume of business.”
As well as high levels of connectivity expertise Nimans can also help resellers break into adjacent markets – with call reporting from SaaS specialist Akixi and hosted telephony and UC opportunities from SIPCOM complemented by its own managed services installation and maintenance solution. Nimans has also developed a flourishing wholesale mobile proposition with O2. To further assist resellers, Nimans has put together specific bundled solutions, such as combing Microsoft Lync with tablets and broadband sales – making it easier for dealers to maximise revenue opportunities.
Mark concluded: “Applications, hardware and software all rely on some form of connectivity, so its importance cannot be underestimated. It should always be the first consideration. What bandwidth do you need? How many users and how many sites? What are your future expansion plans and what applications do you use? These are the key questions resellers should be asking to spot data opportunities early.
“Connectivity is the glue that binds everything together. Resellers need to see the bigger picture. In many ways connectivity could be more profitable than hardware, tying the customer in for three-to five years.”