Time Warner Cable Business Class Channel Chief Jim Delis told Channel Partners that the cableco's sales partners can expect improved consistency and responsiveness from the company as a result of restructuring that will centralize the channel organization.
In January, the cableco launched its "1TWC" initiative, trading in a long-standing decentralized regional operating structure with a centralized nationwide structure, essentially consolidating six separate regional financial, operational and sales entities into one, with residential, commercial and media segmentations. Within the commercial segment includes all business-to-busness sales including direct, wholesale/carrier and channel.
The restructuring has given the channel a bigger seat at the table and direct control over its own resources. Specifically, the TWCBC channel organization now reports directly to Delis, who was recently named group vice president of partner channels – a new role for the channel veteran that sheds his previous sales responsibility for national carrier sales and national accounts. In this role, Delis has responsibility for the agent channel as well as resellers/aggregators like MegaPath. Delis reports to Craig Collins, senior vice president of business services and sales, along with three peers – two running direct sales and one in telesales.
The most significant impact of the restructuring to the TWCBC partner program is a change in reporting. Under the previous structure, six regional channel directors and channel managers reported up through the regional leadership, ultimately landing with one of two regional senior vice presidents in the East and West. Going forward, these channel directors and their teams report directly to Delis. And, Craig Sandman, senior director of channel services for TWC subsidiary Navisite, also reports to Delis instead of the Navisite sales organization. Greg Iuzzolino, senior director of partner sales, continues as Delis’ right hand in the partner program and is responsible for partner development.
“We were working with [channel staff] as a virtual team … because they didn’t report to us," said Delis of the previous structure, which characterized the partner program since it was launched in March 2008. “We were managing by influence, not directive."
While the TWCBC experienced incredible growth over the past five years (50 percent year-over-year growth in 2013 alone), Delis said the change will enable the company to support its partners in a more consistent and efficient manner.
“Partners that work in multiple markets will no longer have different rules in different markets," Delis said, noting the cable company is normalizing processes across its footprint with plans to formally release new plans and rules of engagement to the channel by the end of this year or first quarter of 2014.
Some things partners can expect regarding new ROE, include:
1. Pricing parity when direct and indirect face off in a customer deal
2. Ink wins, giving purchasing control to the customer
3. payment on new customer acquisition and new product sold to existing customers but not on bandwidth upgrades for existing customers
Delis said he also expects to have more consistent and frequent touch points with agents. As an example, he cited, being able to direct channel managers to provide support to subagents in a certain region.