Westcon UK's VoicePoint manager Dawn Fenton speaks to IT Europa about the programme’s gathering success following the Comms Channel Awards victory
Westcon’s VoicePoint programme, which is designed to provide resellers with the skills needed to sell end-to-end convergence solutions, was judged the Best Channel Development Campaign at this year’s Comms Channel Awards. UK VoicePoint manager Dawn Fenton argues the success of the programme, which has reeled in 1,000 members since its launch three years ago, is attributable to several factors, not least its depth. ‘There are different elements of VoicePoint that attract different resellers,’ she explains. ‘If for instance you’re a data reseller and you want to take on voice products from the likes of Nortel or Avaya, a manufacturer’s training doesn’t necessarily give you the industry knowledge and the history behind voice.
They need a base level of knowledge on what convergence is.
So we have programmes for data resellers who want to sell convergence and the same thing for security and voice resellers.’ On top of providing resellers with training, lead generation and sales tools, VoicePoint also aims to boost channel partners’ marketing clout.
The distributor offers resources on how to run seminars and telemarketing campaigns on its website and will even run events jointly with the reseller. ‘There are a lot of resellers who don’t have dedicated marketing resources,’ reasons Fenton
. ‘This is about taking the pain away from the reseller.’ OneVoice centres around foundation partners Nortel and Avaya.
‘We also work with affinity vendors such as GN Netcom
and development vendors that are closely aligned to our foundation partners such as Packeteer and Extreme Networks,’ adds Fenton.
says the distributor is happy with it current line-up but will continue to search for products that complement its foundation vendors as the market evolves. Representatives from around a quarter of Westcon’s 4,000 to 4,500 UK resellers are currently signed up to the programme.