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Stand First: To enable and support co-innovating companies with rapid go-to-market strategies, the channel must evolve faster. Regional trends like edge computing, ecommerce, and shopper-tainment require the channel to improve its ability to move quickly, provide scaling solutions and services, and offer educational resources. Vendors need to offer Partner Programs and certifications to meet these needs.
Small and medium businesses (SMB) in the Asia Pacific region are taking advantage of their scale to be agile and fast moving, leveraging the strengths of their technology partners and service hosts, in a market projected to reach $1.21 trillion by 2025, as forecasted by the International Data Corporation.
These businesses, driven by strengthening and emerging market trends, require new and diverse support from the channel to fully capitalise on the rapid pace and varied opportunities available.
The Asia Pacific market, beyond China, is a vibrant, growing region, seeing some specific adoption trends that are driving underlying investments in infrastructure and services.
Perhaps the most significant trend is towards the adoption of hybrid IT environments. Among the high priority IT infrastructure upgrades are data centre and cloud, edge computing deployments, and customer experience projects.
Three out of 10 Asia Pacific organisations say they already have contemporary edge computing sites deployed, and others say they’re in the early stage of cloud adoption. This will facilitate customer experience services in the likes of retail, where shopping can become an enhanced experience.
However, the spreading trend of shopper-tainment is also driving developments in streaming, on-demand, and ecommerce services. Indonesia is one such market where ecommerce is growing rapidly not just in volume, but also in sophistication.
Co-innovation is creating new value propositions that are characterised by rapid go to market options. There are some fantastic examples around edge computing, where it’s a vendor working with the customer and a partner that has specialised expertise around a particular area, such as Tanishq in India.
The customer company knows the business part of what they’re doing, and then they all work together to create a new solution that is then taken to market. Through this way of working, it leverages the respective strengths of both parties to ensure that market knowledge is rapidly converted into a value proposition that is fit for purpose.
Difference is key
Partners also need to find where they can differentiate because there are a lot of vanilla services from the channels. Channel partners need to be creative and agile in how they make support and services available to reflect the dynamic nature of the market and the speed and agility of collaboration between customers and technical partners.
For many, the challenge lies in finding a balance between specialisation and avoiding excessive reliance on a single market niche. We see that end users are seeking partners who can swiftly adapt and participate in agile projects structured into sprints, focusing on specific areas of the business. As a result, they value specialised skills and talented individuals to support these projects, which has become a significant aspect. Vendors and channel partners can work together to craft new learning pathways and resources to provide all teams with the right tools and information.
Existing programmes need modernising, but new programmes may also be needed, that are widely available, easy to consume and reflect today’s market needs. Gamification has worked well in these applications too, with scores and league tables adding motivation and recognising success.
While small and medium-sized companies in the Asia Pacific region are increasingly becoming nimble and agile by leveraging their vendor ecosystems and working with certified partners that understand their goals and aspirations, the channel has lagged behind.
To further enable and support these co-innovating companies with their rapid go-to-market strategies, the channel, with vendor support, needs to evolve faster to meet and exceed those specific needs. With regional trends in the likes of ecommerce and shopper-tainment, the channel needs to become better at moving fast, providing scaling solutions and services and educational resources so as not to hinder this growth opportunity.
To learn more about edge computing and explore technologies that support digital transformations, read more here. For channel partners looking to diversify their offer, attract new customers, and capture new market opportunities, click here to learn more about the mySchneider program.