As dealers are tasked to expand their offerings, break into new vertical markets and do more with less, a strong relationship with a trusted distributor can be a defining factor in their success. Beyond providing a comprehensive line of products and serving as a one-stop-shop for security dealers, today’s distributors are increasingly offering a robust portfolio of services to help dealers expand their businesses.
Relying on product alone to define a security dealer’s business has quickly become a thing of the past.
No matter where the dealer falls on the spectrum, leveraging the expertise of a trusted distributor could be the game-changing factor in taking their business to the next level. Security dealers will be able to better differentiate themselves and gain a competitive edge in the marketplace by taking advantage of some or all of the following value-added services offered by many distributors.
Implementation and Deployment Services
Even for the dealer with a deep talent bench, the time will come when resources are at capacity or expansion into a new region is required. Many distributors offer cost-efficient models to meet these needs through a services umbrella of third-party organizations that deliver in-field support in every region.
Through this model, the distributor acts as the dealer’s dedicated general contractor — from managing services such as SOW/SLA and completing full-scale integration and deployment through go-live events to smaller projects such as unpacking materials and hauling waste away.
Design and Engineering Support for RFP Response
Public Sector RFPs and other solicitations are generally open to all dealers; however, in some cases, dealers must be an existing vendor to bid on the project. A well-positioned distributor will have significant experience in responding to these requests and be able to help dealers assemble the most qualified response possible.
By relying on its long-standing relationships, the distributor can help ensure the OEM responds to the dealer’s RFP and considers applying special pricing. OEMs may also be willing to provide deployment or implementation support for the project. Ultimately, having an OEM’s support lends credence to the dealer and can be considered an endorsement of the proposal.
Financing and Logistics Support
By collaborating in areas such as financing and logistics, distributors can help dealers showcase their creativity, attention to detail and respect for the financial investment the agency or municipality is making. Many distributors offer financial alternatives that expand credit capacity and help customer dollars go further.
One example is turning a capital expenditure into a lease or extended payment to allow for other elements of a project to be implemented, instead of paring back based on a flat dollar amount. Tight logistics and supply chain planning keep projects on track, on time and within budget. With multiple warehouse locations and robust inventory management systems, the distributor is well-positioned to assume the task of logistics supervisor.
Helping Build a Vertical-Specific Practice
Distributors can perform an assessment of the skills that made a dealer successful in one market and apply them to another. They can also find common ground between customers in one vertical and customers in a new one. Even though most technologies are horizontally applied, they solve similar problems for end-users, no matter what vertical market they are deployed in. Consider a dealer working with access control — the key here is to understand what problem the solution is solving and what the implemented technology needs to accomplish. Regardless of the vertical, a trusted distributor can connect the dots with its diverse, multi-vertical expertise.
For commercially-focused dealers, distributors with experience in the Public Sector can provide valuable advice on how to break into or expand their presence this space. Beyond connecting dealers to OEMs with resources focused on Public Sector, many distributors provide access to State and Local Government and Education (SLED) and federal business intelligence tools that help identify additional opportunities. They may also provide access to grant and funding streams available to subsidize technology investments.
Education and Training
Just about any security solution has to be cloud-ready and connected with an IT backbone. Beyond providing this infrastructure, a trusted distributor can train employees on how to sell a system and brand it as the company’s own.
Distributors can also educate dealers on IP, storage, networking and more, whether they are looking to sell more within an existing customer base, break into a new one, or both.
Eddie Franklin is Vice President of Sales – Public Sector & Vertical Markets for Synnex Corp., a distributor of technology products to more than 20,000 resellers, system integrators, and retailers in the United States, Canada, Japan, and Mexico. To request more info about the company, please visit www.securityinfowatch.com/10215269.