A large software company needed to improve its return, management, and reporting around its partner incentives and contra-revenue programs.
Channel incentives are business investments that aim to drive partner behavior. True incentives are always performance-based and aim to improve the mix, reach, or yield of your partner base.
Here's how our client, a large technology company effectively used incentives to improve partner performance.
- No centralized management of rebates and incentives as all were run at the local sales region level
- Inability to benchmark performance and cost structure across different incentives and geographies
- Wildly different partner experiences across different geographies with high complexity and inconsistency
- No clear accountability and decision-making authority across different business divisions
- Fragmented and incomplete reporting frustrated senior executive team
- Unclear return on investment for a very large budget spend
- Conducted deep ROI analysis on each incentive program across all geographic areas
- Set partner incentive guidelines and directives for each geographic area to follow that allowed local execution with centralized governance.
- Created a worldwide incentive program management framework with clear decision-making authority and standardized performance reporting
- Conducted performance modeling and goal setting criteria to allow tighter alignment to business objectives
- Stronger centralized governance while preserving field flexibility within defined parameters
- Improved incentive return by discontinuing low-yield program and reinvesting in others
- Improved key partner performance and satisfaction with Microsoft
- Incentives became outcomes-based rather than activity-based
- Better alignment between field behavior to strategic imperatives and key performance drivers
- Senior executives regained confidence in the return of the partner incentive programs.