How to Benefit from Partner Relationship Management (PRM)

Published: 23rd August 2006
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How is PRM different from CRM?



In this demanding economy, companies are on the never-ending quest for solutions / tools that will help them accrue / maintain their loyalty and business with their customers. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is one such application that has attracted a lot of attention from organizations worldwide.



Though containing the word "relationship", CRM is actually not concerned with managing customer relationships. It lays emphasis on creating customer profiles by accumulating and advocating data regarding customer's buying habits and personal preferences. These profiles are then used by businesses to directly target their niche market.



Talking about relationships, Partner Relationship Management (PRM) is an affair about understanding and satisfying the needs of your business partners with dexterity. As compared to gathering sales data, PRM is a much more complex application as it involves building and maintaining trust between you and your business channel partners. Many discussions on PRM, in correlation with CRM, have argued over personifying PRM either as seperate entity or merely an element of CRM.



CRM was fundamentally structured to manage direct sales engagements between a seller and a buyer. This function concentrates on gathering and sharing data throughout customer/s buying cycle. On the other hand, PRM has been designed to manage a complex system revolving around aligning business processes across the entire chain of vendors to partner and to customers. PRM technology enables companies to generate more work efficiency and profitability with all partner types, including channel, distribution, reseller, strategic alliance, system integration and consulting partners.



Since, every partner organization has a unique way of executing business, it is difficult to manifest a perfect process alignment between partners and vendors. This discrepancy makes it practically impossible to report and measure channel results accurately. CRM systems were not designed to accommodate this level of complexity. To effectively manage indirect business relationships, companies require a dedicated PRM system to co-ordinate activity between all the participants in the process loop.



Making PRM Work for You



Partners provide a cost-effective way to expand your enterprise by providing you with broader geo-market reach. When leveraged properly, they help you to accelerate revenue growth, streamline operations and improve efficiency.



Partner relationship management (PRM) is a business strategy for improving communication between companies and their channel partners. At a time when businesses need to maximize every resource available to them, building strong partner relationships and effective channel strategies has become a critical practice. Working with PRM dynamics, you must also focus on: -



1.Communicating with your partner, using your self-disclosure skills to articulate your needs.

2.Identifying and then sharing your personal most trusted strategies with your partner.

3.Evolving mutually beneficial agreements while working through a conflicting situation.



With businesses becoming global and interdependent in nature, PRM has a more vital role to play. This worldwide interdependence is only based on trust factor. The call-center industry sets a major example on this front. American businesses, having formed alliances with partners in India, Africa, and other distant regions, hire thousands of call-center executives to meet American and worldwide consumer demands. Such alliances require a high degree of partnership intelligence. Without establishing and managing such trusting and mutually beneficial alliances, the level of investments made by the call center and other industries will only face a doom.



Advantages of Partner Relationship Management



Businesses and organizations can immensely benefit from Partner Relationship Management (PRM) programs as follows: -



* Extend your enterprise reach and increase revenues through a well-managed partner network.

* Optimize partner program profitability through better understanding of partner's value and performance.

* Streamline operations and reduce costs by automating manual processes and integrating partner operations throughout the enterprise.

* Develop a mutually trusting and beneficial partnerships

* Challenge you to change and focus on the future so you do not continually dwell on past glories and stay stagnant.

* Helps you focus resources on critical activities throughout the customer sales cycle and product lifecycle to maximize revenue rates and margins.

* Help companies deliver services that maximize product availability and customer productivity and minimize cost, time and energy.

* Links your future with that of your partner in a positive and exciting way.

* Efficiently manage your association with important customers, suppliers, outsourcing partners and partner alliances.



Web-based PRM software applications enable companies to customize and streamline administrative tasks by making real-time information available to all the partners over the Internet. Several CRM providers have incorporated PRM features in their software applications in the shape of web-enabled spreadsheets shared over extranet.



Salesforce.com's comprehensive on-demand PRM:



As one of the leading companies offering on-demand CRM application, Salesforce.com provides capable solutions for managing your indirect sales channels. The PRM system, integrated with Sales Force Automation, helps to deliver unmatched visibility to your company's sales pipeline for direct and indirect channels.



Sales Force PRM makes it easy for partners to access leads, collaborate on deals and locate all the lucrative information. Through a set of easy-to-use services, Sales Force PRM offers: -



1.Higher level of Partner Adoption.

2.Complete Channel Visibility via real-time access to channel sales.

3.Leading Partner Lifecycle Management, including recruitment, marketing, selling and measurement.

4.Integrated SFA application for planning and forecasting.

5.100% on-demand partner solutions resulting in fast deployment and customized partner experience.



Where else will you find such a powerful combination under one-roof? If you need more reasons to get Sales Force PRM solution, download Sales Force PRM Datasheet - Free. Contact Salesforce.com Today!



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For more information contact us at: Sales Force


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