Tuesday, December 27, 2011

More News from the VAR World: ConnectWise introduces 'Vendor Management'

Today I attended a webinar hosted by ConnectWise titled "Vendor Management"

You remember ConnectWise as a VAR infrastructure software package which includes modules for everything from dispatch to Sales to Marketing support.

"Vendor Management" is a new functionality and is intended to assist Managed Service Providers (MSP) in managing technology vendors for their clients.  The MSP could now handle interfacing with the telephone, domain, internet vendors on their clients' behalf - and yes, not only did one graphic include a "copier vendor" icon, the word "copier" was mentioned no less than 12 times in under 42 minutes.

Their primary concern? "...vendors are starting to invade each others space leading to finger pointing...leaving the customer stuck in the middle..."

With this new module, ConnectWise is recommending the MPS step into the middle of the convergence, taking and maintaining control of their clients' vendor ecosystem.  

This is a valuable service, and strategic in nature along the lines of 'whoever owns the network, owns the account' mentality.

If you manage the Vendors, you manage the access, billing, relationship and minimize each uniqueness.

Additionally, they see this convergence as predatory. Outsiders infiltrating 'their' accounts, specifically mentioning copier vendors.

The module looks completely adequate with everything from annotation capabilities, workflow and contract renewal reviews.

A pivot point-  positioning for the approaching struggle.

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