Monday, January 28, 2013

Why Don't You Pay Reps Residuals on Service Contracts?


"It is time to pay sales people commission on copier service agreements.  It is time to combine all volume under one agreement, on a single invoice and pay the sales person residuals for the life of the engagement."

January, 2013

One of the first rules of managed print services is consolidating the decision making process for printers with the process for copiers, bringing IT and Purchasing(or facilities) together.  This usually meant getting the copier decision out of the hands of purchasing or facilities and into the realm of IT.

It was a big deal at the time and a qualification of a real managed print services opportunity - if we can't speak to the person in charge of both copiers and printers, we did not move forward.  On the other hand, once we befriend an IT director, one of our guiding principles was to shift the copier decision process into IT.  If the device was connected to the network, it should fall under management of the IT department.

It was a good idea and contributed to most every successful managed print services engagement.

But a funny thing happened on the way to managed print services nirvana - in an effort to fully understand managed print services, we, on the provider side,  chopped up all the elements of the ecosystem. We saw managed network services as separate from managed services(?).  We decided to propose MpS for printers and continue writing separate service agreements for copiers.

We dumbed down managed print services offering "advanced toner delivery services" in its stead. The printer & toner guys laid claim to MpS defining it as "printer service and supplies on a cost per image billing" sliding right into their existing model.

And the copier folks were just fine with this approach, they didn't want to change either. They didn't need to adjust the way they leased and serviced copiers, or tamper with decades old billing and invoicing policies.  No need to upset the apple cart here - service departments have been running just fine - fueled by 36 to 72 months of predictable and untouchable service revenue.

It doesn't stop here.

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