CompTIA’s yearly State of the Channel report covers trends in the technology ecosystem by surveying hundreds of U.S. IT businesses. We looked at their 2018 report as it pertains to channel partnership trends and found some key information that we’d like to share with you.

Optimism for the Future

CompTIA reports that businesses in the channel are very optimistic for the future. The report states, “Nearly across the board, respondents in 2018 ranked factors that bolster good feelings about the channel’s future significantly higher than they did two years ago.

The broader use of technology among customers, for example, inspired optimism for the future in 37% of 2016’s respondents; in 2018 that figure jumped to 52%.” However, businesses face concerns when it comes to the availability of skilled IT workers, a gap that CompTIA says the channel hopes to “tackle with the help of third-party experts.”

Creating Agility Within the Channel

As the IT channel grows and gains momentum businesses must be agile to maintain growth. More and more clients are looking for a technology provider that has expertise in a broad array of skills and can provide comprehensive support. Despite the fact that it is nearly impossible for one provider to effectively deliver on all solutions and services, the client wants “one throat to choke” and will look for a provider who can fully manage their technology. Organizations miss out on valuable business when they are unable to meet specific needs for their clients and may even face losing the client completely to a competitor who is able to provide a greater range of services. One way to avoid this pitfall is through partnerships. In fact, one would argue that partnerships and collaborations are required if an organization is to succeed in today’s technology landscape.

Says CompTIA, “Partner-to-partner (P2P) collaboration has always been talked about as a bit of holy grail in the channel. But today it is gathering some momentum as the ecosystem expands. As vertical and application specialization proliferates, channel firms more steeped in horizontal infrastructure are seeing an upside to filling a gap in their portfolio by partnering vs hiring. Nearly 6 in 10 respondents said they have had a positive experience with this type of partnering arrangement. The benefits, they contend, are expanded business opportunities and skills gap narrowing.”

Benefits and Pitfalls of IT Partnerships

It’s easy to see the upside of partnerships within the channel. Collaborating with other technology providers allows an organization to expand its portfolio, accelerate innovation, maintain client loyalty, and provide a full-service solution that meets client needs seamlessly. This opportunity to create new revenue streams through cross-selling and up-selling helps channel partners fast-track growth. Clients also benefit from these behind the scenes partnerships because a complete package from one provider allows them to streamline communications and focus on their business.

However, the study says, “It’s not always an easy model, but most agree it’s a good idea. A quarter of respondents called P2P between infrastructure firms and applications specialists good in theory, but sometimes difficult to do in practice. Often this is the result of partnerships that are handshake only in nature, lacking in formal rules of engagement, agreed-upon lines of accountability, and repetitive processes.”

Building a Successful Partnership 

Clearly there are difficulties when it comes to finding the right partners within the business of technology. ImagIT has successfully partnered with many organizations in the channel, and we have found that the key to that success is establishing clear communication and agreements but still maintaining flexibility.

We help organizations grow by meeting the channel’s number one need, skilled IT workers. Our expert IT engineers, technicians, and project managers are vetted and trained to ensure proficiency, and they can integrate seamlessly with your team. ImagIT provides boots on the ground in major cities around the world, allowing our partners to start more conversations with their clients and deliver more value in every engagement. We were built on partner relationships and we proudly continue this legacy as the channel develops and grows into a global ecosystem.

Our experienced channel team has built a successful approach to partner engagements that includes partner programs, competitive pricing models, and enterprise class projects. ImagIT’s adherence to partner standards and best practices yields a high rate of success, ensuring client satisfaction and repeat business. With ImagIT as your partner you can add value for your clients by providing the consultative and comprehensive IT support services they need.

ImagIT Solutions was built on personalized services and partner relationships and we continue that legacy to this day. Our innovative solutions are developed to fit your needs for today and are scalable for your organization’s growth plan. Our team of experts work at the intersection of business and technology to help your organization build for the future while tackling any IT challenges you may face on the way. To learn more about our array of services visit click HERE. Or to learn more about ImagIT, meet our leadership team, and view our competencies and coverage please click HERE.