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Zoom focused on simplicity for A/NZ partners

Zoom focused on simplicity for A/NZ partners

Growth in the channel is pivotal to success.

Jacob Pereira (Zoom)

Jacob Pereira (Zoom)

Credit: Supplied

Zoom is harnessing channel opportunity in A/NZ and hopes to 'keep things simple' for its partners in the video communications platform’s ecosystem.

Speaking with Reseller News, recently appointed Zoom APAC head of partners Jacob Pereira said that globally, around 30 per cent of Zoom’s business is through the channel, but with an “expanded portfolio”, including the launch of its partner program Zoom Up earlier in 2022, “we definitely see the growth in channel being pivotal to success.”

“We are transforming the way the hybrid environment communicates,” he said.

Zoom A/NZ channel sales manager Ashley Allen, also recently promoted, added that in A/NZ specifically, the focus is on rolling out channel market opportunity by “looking and qualifying for the right partners to work with and to build successful partnerships with them.”

Channel priorities

The challenge for Zoom lies in redefining customer knowledge of the brand and its expanded offerings, and communicating the potential addressable market to drive ecosystem growth.

Pereira said new offerings have inflated past what was available at the beginning of the pandemic, making Zoom a household name, to now “go way beyond that to sell a platform.”

“That platform that we've announced in the market is called Zoom One. It's meetings, chat, whiteboard, webinars and so on packaged into one,” he said.

Zoom One is aimed at creating seamless communication for hybrid working environments that transcends individual modes of communication.

“It’s about how different modes of communication can now integrate together,” Allen added. “It’s a single license for an end-user that provides them the chat function, that can be escalated into a voice call, that can seamlessly then be escalated into a video call, that can be escalated into a meetings room environment.”

According to Pereira, the fastest growing arm of the business is the Zoom Phone offering, recently reporting a milestone of 4 million users.

For Pereira, Zoom Phone provides a solution for businesses wanting to drive remote, hybrid, and on-premises communication “all at the same time”.

Zoom Phone, alongside Zoom Rooms, is where channel partners join the picture through product monetisation.

Allen noted that a large focus for Zoom is on expanding and maturing its Zoom Up partner program to provide a clear route to market for partners.

Allen is focused on “really making sure that our partners understand how the program works, how we align our partners with our internal sales teams as well, and how we work with our partners to build out customer demand, build out opportunity and to recognise the profit opportunities that they can make in partnering with zoom around additional services, hardware, development and so forth.”

“In A/NZ specifically we're looking at who are the partners that we're partnering with and how we're working with them and aligning with them as closely as we can”, she continued.

To differentiate themselves in a competitive landscape, Zoom is “building our program around simplicity,” Pereira said, as well as supporting partners to capture two different sales routes to market.

The reseller motion allows a reseller partner to own an invoicing element and additional services down to the end customer, and the referral-based motion allows partners to work from a consultancy or “less-traditional” IT landscape to identify an opportunity for the Zoom sales team to work on, Allen said.

Partners should leverage vendor support that’s available to them, Allen said, and a focus is on communicating the in-country resources that are available to them, including training partners on integrations available such as with DocuSign and ServiceNow.

“A successful channel partnership is one that we’re really closely aligned with,” she said.

Zoom NZ regional sales manager, Jaron Burbidge, added that the virtual event space is an area of demand and opportunity in which new offerings can provide solutions in a post-pandemic work environment.

With virtual proving itself as a valid form of event delivery through the pandemic, businesses are looking to a permanently hybrid mode of event delivery as a way to reach bigger audiences.

“We've got to make it really easy and frictionless for people to drive hybrid events,” Burbidge said.

Market challenges

Allen said that what they are seeing from customers following emergence from a tough economic period, and amid expectations that this period may continue, is that IT investment decisions are “much more considered”.

“People had to make very rapid decisions over the last 12, to 18, to 24 months and now they’re taking the time to really look at what the total cost of ownership is,” she said.

Pereira shared his perspective of key challenges facing the overall market, summarising it into three areas: “trust, talent, and transformation”.

On transformation, he says that “governments and organisations” need to look at what the “transformation agenda” is, whether that be the 4-day work week that some areas are considering, or moves to permanent hybrid working, and how that will help with the next challenge of retaining talent.

The ‘trust’ piece comes in as a need for employers to have confidence that their employees can work productively remotely.

Pereira shared that the Zoom One platform offering helps with “unified communication” that addresses these market challenges.

Zoom also recently launched its global investment arm, Zoom Ventures, focused at driving innovation in its ecosystem.

Zoom Ventures will focus on early to growth stage companies that offer solutions align with its core video platform and adjacent products.

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