SalesTech Star

SalesTechStar Interview with Peter Leddy, Vice President, Global Partner Organization at Qlik

Strong partner programs can impact overall company growth and performance in today’s SaaS marketplace, Peter Leddy, Vice President, Global Partner Organization at Qlik shares a few influencing factors that can drive more ROI from partner programs in this chat:

 

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Hi Peter, we’d love to hear about your journey through the years…tell us more about your role at Qlik?

I’ve been lucky to have a career that has spanned a wide variety of exciting industries, including pharmaceuticals, information technology, revenue management, and data and analytics. I joined Qlik in August 2015 as Director of Industry Partner Solutions, a role that allowed me to engage with Qlik’s most strategic business consulting, systems integration and technology partners. I worked with them to build joint go-to-market industry solutions, co-develop assets, and promote partnerships within Qlik’s internal and external ecosystem.

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As Vice President of Corporate Development, I was responsible for the strategy, evaluation, execution and cross-functional integration of Qlik acquisitions including Podium Data, CrunchBot, Attunity, RoxAI, Knarr.io and Blendr.io. And now, as the Vice President of Global Partner Organization, I have the privilege of working with our 1,700+ global partners, who strive to create better business solutions, increase efficiency, reduce costs, and improve customer satisfaction.

We’d like to hear more about Qlik’s recent enhancements to their partner program?

The SaaS economy has shifted how the world conducts business, inspiring a powerful transition from a product to a services mindset. As we evolve our business to fulfill those needs and acquire additional talent – including Podium Data in 2018 and Attunity in early 2019 – we knew it was time to enhance our partner program. We did just that with our recent launch of the Cloud Services track, which is designed to help partners navigate shifting technology needs, new customer buying behaviors and evolving partner ecosystems through a collaborative engagement with Qlik. This gives us an opportunity to empower our partners to deliver consistent value that fully supports our joint customers on their journey to the cloud.

Approximately 40 percent of our sales are conducted through our partner program, and more than 70 percent of our deals involve a partner in some capacity, so this is a very important part of Qlik. We are proud to be able to further emphasize our focus on customer experience and customer success in this new program. And we are delighted to be able to incentivize our partners to own their customers throughout the customer lifecycle and make sure that they’re driving the right engagement and the right behaviors.

This is important given our partner mix; some are building out technology platform solutions and others are solution provider partners that co-sell and work with us in marketplace-type engagements. With a growing variety in the types of partners that are coming together, we realized that it was time to rethink how to best engage with them. Instead of thinking of it from a partner type of interaction, we are now looking at it as an engagement model. That way, they get to determine what they want to do based on their business goals and needs – if they want to sell with us, drive customer success, offer solutions, whatever it may be. With the Cloud Services track, our partners have the resources they need to build a profitable source of recurring revenue.

How can B2B brands today capitalize more on partnership and channel opportunities? A few thoughts for teams still setting this process up?

Start from understanding where the customer needs and partner capabilities intersect.  Many partners are great at certain aspects, such as relationship building and prospecting, but may have gaps in other areas, such as training and enablement.  Being able to augment your partners’ skill sets and making it easy for the partner to do business with you is essential.  You’re in it together, so creating an environment where partners can easily get whatever support they need to provide customers with successful business outcomes.

Can you share the key highlights on some of the strongest tech partnerships from the global sales and tech marketplace – the top learnings from these?

At the heart of every great partnership is being committed together to putting the customer first. If you can deliver solutions and services together that solve real customer needs, and not just works to match your price list or packaging options, you’re already on the way to building long lasting and profitable relationships.

As B2B sales and marketing trends evolve, what are some other channels that can help build opportunity and create consistent revenue that marketing and sales leaders need to be paying more attention to?

Digital has certainly become much more important given the realities of the pandemic.  We’ve worked with partners to help shape their digital outreach efforts with amazing content that answers real-world concerns vs. just pushing our product.  Webinars, ebooks and case studies have all become even more important, and serving these up easily through a user-friendly partner portal has helped our partners find and leverage a wealth of material they need along every point of the buyers journey with a prospect.

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A dive into some of the top technologies and automation that you use to drive goals at Qlik?

We have made significant investments in our internal systems to make it easier than ever for partners to focus on the customer and not worry about how to navigate our systems to get things done.  One way we do that is extending Qlik’s contracting, order management, and subscription management infrastructure directly to customers, which helps reduce partner overhead and risk. We’ve also provided partners with an integrated CRM/PRM experience that streamlines and simplifies partner sourcing, lead distribution, opportunity management, sell and support processes, giving partners more visibility and alignment with customers. The exciting part is that our own Qlik SaaS (Blendr.io) application automation capabilities are being leveraged as an integrated and embedded core component of the 3rd party platform provided to collaborate and drive sales with our channel partners.

Some last thoughts and takeaways for sales and marketing leaders? 

We are excited to be able to enhance the value of what our partners deliver to their customers: real-time data and analytics. Our partners now have yet another way to land business and expand with Qlik in the cloud. We took the time to carefully design program elements that will make it easier than ever for our partners to work with Qlik to meet modern customer needs and drive larger and more strategic customer opportunities.

We’re also offering new and improved rules of engagement that provide increased clarity when engaging with Qlik sales and generates increased opportunity for our partners. We’re delivering new incentives to reward partners at every stage of the relationship, from initial sale through ongoing expansion and success achieved throughout the customer lifecycle and subscription term. And last but not least, we’re supporting partner advocacy with a new Ambassador program that will recognize individual partner team members who are driving direct impact for customers.

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Qlik

A private SaaS company, Qlik provides an end-to-end, real-time data integration and analytics cloud platform to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik does business in more than 100 countries and serves over 50,000 customers around the world.

Peter Leddy is the Vice President, Global Partner Organization at Qlik

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