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The partner’s take

The partner’s take 

Although there was initially some separation anxiety expressed amongst HP executives and partners about the move, the company launched programs to ease the transition process. The Navigator and HP PartnerOne programs were designed with partners in mind, and both will ensure that they will have all the support they need, pre- and post-split.

But what do the partners think of HP’s split decision, and how will it affect them in the long run? To find out, IT in Canada spoke to Andrew Bentley, General Manager, North America for Calgary-based Long View, to get the partner’s take on this situation.

IT in Canada: Why did Long View choose to partner with HP?
Bentley: The partnership with HP is a long-standing partnership, and it dates back to the original start-up of Long View. At that time, we made the decision to partner with HP because they were the leading supplier of server technology, they had great storage solutions, and they were the leading manufacturer of that technology.

We chose them because they were leaders, and we continued the partnership with them because they were leaders in their space, certainly from a market share perspective, and I think they’re going to continue to drive innovation. They’ve upped their R&D budget, as we learned at the GPC, and I hope that that increase in spending relating to R&D is going to ultimately drive better products into the marketplace.

ITIC: How has Long View benefited from this partnership?
AB: We have benefited from partnering with HP through the extension of our reach. When you put the two sales forces together, and the reach of their organization with our organization, it helps us to be more successful with our customers.

They have stories, references and examples of how companies have benefited from their technology that we can bring to bear on the opportunities that we’re working on, and that idea of synergy. Truly, there is something there above the collective of the two organizations together that makes for better opportunities and solutions for our customers.

ITIC: How will HP’s upcoming split affect Long View’s business?
AB: I’m optimistic about it. The increased focus they will have as two organizations will, in fact, be better for both HP and Long View. A great example of that is where previously, the PPS rep would share responsibility and quota for the print line of products, as well as the laptop side of the business. Having those two separated, even just that alone will give more focus to that side of the business.

It also means there will be less distraction on the EG side of the business as well. They don’t have to worry about that part of the business, so they can put all of their wood behind the arrow of EG and focus the products there.

From a market perspective, I think the marketplace will view it as positive and see them as two strong Fortune 50 companies.

ITIC: The Navigator program was introduced by HP to assist partners with the transition process. Why is it important to provide partners with a program like this?
AB: I think it’s a thoughtful thing to do. The term “separation anxiety” was used by some of the HP executives, and I’m not sure there’s going to be as much separation anxiety as they might have suggested there would be.

I think open, frequent, honest communication between both organizations is critical for our joint success. We are stronger when we communicate and understand each other’s strategies, fiscal goals and selling motions. 

ITIC: Why is proper communication such a crucial part of the separation process?
AB: In a separation process, communication is important because there’s always angst and uncertainty, and where there’s angst, people tend to complete the story themselves. The communication as it relates to separation, and from an HP perspective, as it relates to their community of VARs is important because in the absence of information, we end up completing the story ourselves.

I think it helps in regards to telling the story the way it’s supposed to be told. It’s important in terms of making sure the programs that accelerate the success of the split happen as quickly as possible, and all of that is necessary to communication.

ITIC: How will Long View get the full benefit of the separation?
AB: Long View is going to get the full benefit of the separation because we need to think of our own business as two separate organizations. We have a person who is currently dedicated to the selling motion of HP Inc., and we also have a person dedicated to the selling motion of Hewlett-Packard Enterprise. We will get the benefit because it means more resources, funding and investment dollars are going to be targeted towards those individuals and their unique selling motions.

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