As a vendor there are endless reasons why you should be implementing a partner performance dashboard in today’s complex channel ecosystem. However, there are a number of factors to consider before creating your dashboard. These considerations involve determining which KPIs to include, how to overcome data challenges, and finally the best approach to building your dashboard.
These questions were addressed in our webinar “Partner Performance Dashboards for Tomorrow’s Channel Ecosystem”. During the webinar, Channel Mechanics VP of Sales, John McArdle, quizzed Jeremy Butt, SVP, International & Strategic Alliances Partners at RingCentral and Balaji Subramanian, Global Channel Chief, SVP Channel Sales at IGEL, on these topics.
3 Considerations when Creating a Partner Performance Dashboard
1. Determining the Right Partner Performance Dashboard KPIs
One of the most frequent questions asked when creating a partner performance dashboard is which key performance indicators (KPIs) to include. Remember, the more KPIs you wish to display, the more data you may need to source.
Vendors usually have between six and nine KPIs, but this depends on your business model, partner ecosystem and the outcome that you’re trying to achieve. For example, renewals based KPIs are becoming more common alongside the growth of subscriptions and recurring revenues.
RingCentral is a UCaaS business (Unified Communications-as-a-Service) which predominantly operates an agency model. Channel partners provide RingCentral with leads to fulfil directly, with the vendor compensating the partner for those leads for the lifetime of the deal. RingCentral also operates a traditional resell model, meaning the company must produce a separate set of KPIs for each channel model.
“The KPIs for us are based on how many leads the partners are giving us and the quality of those leads. We metric the hell out of that and we go in-depth in terms of when the lead gets registered, such as how many characters are in the data field. We know if the data field contains less than a certain number of characters and if there are certain words in the field, our chance of closing the deal reduces. So, we really look at lead quality, lead to opportunity conversion, and the dollarization of the pipeline” stated Butt.
2. How to Overcome Data Challenges
Another common question is how and where do you source all the partner data needed for the dashboard. Once you have determined your KPIs, it can seem an overwhelming task to gather and integrate all the data needed for measuring partner performance.
“It is challenging at times to gather data and to be able to integrate it. But it’s a lot ‘easier’ today than it was five years ago,” said Subramanian. “A lot of companies, like Channel Mechanics, are skilled in Salesforce or Dynamics so integrating that data using APIs and data mapping is much easier now”.
3. How to Approach Building your Partner Performance Dashboard
Subramanian set out four tips for creating the right partner performance dashboard for your business. Step one involves making sure that partners are involved in the design of the dashboard “Bring them in and get their feedback to help you design that dashboard so it’s relevant for them,” said Subramanian.
Secondly, he recommends completing it in iterations. Do it, get some feedback, do a little bit more, and present again. Subramanian’s advice to everybody is to “crawl, walk and run”.
Subramanian goes on to state the importance of bringing your partners to a single source of truth. So, when you work with your IT and operations teams, make sure that you can not only get the data and integrate it properly, but “it’s a single source of truth, which will provide consistency, internally, as well as externally”.
His final piece of advice is, “Don’t try to reinvent the wheel”. Gain insights by talking to peers, talking to people who have done this before and getting other people’s knowledge transfer as well.
Looking to learn more on Partner Performance Dashboards? Contact our team today and implement your Dashboard tomorrow.
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