Positioning the Equinix Channel for Success

New Equinix global channel organization aims to elevate partner experience

Jules Johnston
Positioning the Equinix Channel for Success

In a way that mirrors the evolving nature of our digital landscape, we are evolving our business at Equinix to meet changing customer and partner needs. With these changes, we are aggressively activating our channel, accelerating our vision and goals and inspiring a partner-first mindset at Equinix, with cross-functional, global channel alignment and accountability.

As the world’s digital infrastructure company, we provide a globally consistent platform of vendor neutral data centers with physical and virtual offers that are interconnected via our secure, software-defined Equinix Fabric™ which enables technology and industry ecosystems to blossom and scale. We have the most dynamic, interconnected ecosystem of nearly 10,000 companies within the industry’s largest global footprint of over 220+ data centers across more than 63 metros in 26 countries on 5 continents.

Our partners can leverage this ecosystem, expand their global reach and enhance their customer offerings through joint value alignment.

IDC - MarketScape: Worldwide Datacenter Colocation and Interconnection Services 2021 Vendor Assessment

In the second MarketScape report on the colocation and interconnection services market, IDC recognized Equinix as a Leader once again.


Changes to Equinix’s Global Channel Organization

For more than a year, we have been implementing organizational changes to drive better focus and consistency to reach our partner development goals. First, we announced a Global Channel Organization, which unified all channel sellers and the Global Channel Programs teams. I then moved into the senior vice president role of the organization to better align our people with our partner objectives and bring together our partner ecosystem across all regions. We also created a Channel Acceleration Council—a global cross-functional team—to establish a partner framework and prioritization that will help drive pro-channel decisions company-wide. Most, recently, we’ve welcomed three new vice presidents of channel sales: Orla Ni Chorcora (EMEA), Sophie Ben Sadia (Asia Pacific) and Kevin Thames (AMER).

The way forward: Listen first, then act

As we set out on this channel engagement evolution, we recognized that the most important contributing voices in the journey are the voices of partners themselves. So, before embarking on any process of change, first we listened. What we learned from that listening endeavour informed our Global Channel initiatives for 2021 and beyond.

One key finding is that our partners require a more consistent way to elevate their needs and concerns to the right organizations within Equinix. Partners specifically pointed to a need for a more standard set of tools—and a comprehensive supporting infrastructure—as essential for scaling operational engagement. That learning has been an important driver behind our initiative to deliver improved service and a uniform experience. Instead of running unique channel motion initiatives in different regions, we’ve combined our entire worldwide partner operations—including the partner-focused tools and support infrastructure.

For example, last year, we overhauled the Partner Central Portal to make it easier for partners to find the tools and resources they need to reach more customers. We’re continuing to evolve the portal into a digital destination of value. We recently introduced the Partner Direct Quoting (PDQ) tool, which creates budgetary quotes on our top products. Later this year, we’ll integrate marketing automation capabilities to help our partners drive demand and refresh our reseller directory to make it even easier to connect customers to the right Equinix partners with the competencies they need.

As partners rightly requested a better engagement process, our Global Channel effort took up the mission to be our partner’s advocate with our product groups. In the process, we’re moving the company to a partner-first product-development strategy with certification programs, partner-specific trainings and satisfaction assessment mechanisms—all intended to help our partners and their sales teams respond more quickly to new services, product offerings and sales opportunities.

Changes that will aggressively activate our channel

A crucial element of our changing business model is the growing emphasis on aligning with our partners. We are combining the value of Platform Equinix® with partner solutions to accelerate our customers’ journey to hybrid multicloud as the clear architecture of choice. We are making these changes to position Equinix and our partner ecosystem for success.

Our goals include:

  • Channel Growth—Channel accounted for more than 30% of bookings in Q1 2021, with 60% of this activity going into our enterprise vertical as the reach and relationships of our partners efficiently expand our addressable market. With that in mind, we have a stated goal from our CEO that, in the next few years, Equinix will do greater than 50% of our business through partners and we are well on our way.
  • Acceleration—We are aim to accelerate realization of our channel vision and goals by leading cross-functional decision-making alignment and accountability, and by perpetually inspiring a partner-first mindset at Equinix.
  • Services—We look to enable large organizations to sell more complete services inside of Equinix so that companies can take advantage of the hybrid multicloud ecosystem and the service providers who serve within that ecosystem.
  • Channel-Enabled Mindset—We look to shift to a longer-term, channel-enabled mindset in which new product offerings and services become standard company priorities.

How this evolution benefits our partners

All our efforts around consolidating partner and channel initiatives focus on this fundamental goal: to accelerate the adoption of Equinix and partner solutions by our mutual customer communities. We’re addressing this core objective by working to optimize partner communication and to enhance message consistency from our organization to the partner community. Our initiative to consolidate the partner champions—and elevate their collective voices within Equinix—is all about making communication simpler and more effective. That’s going to be critically important as we increasingly rely on strategic and channel partners to incorporate Equinix products and services into their own solutions. Making interaction with Equinix seamless for our partners and supporting their investments in integration with the Equinix platform is paramount.

It’s essential that we team with partners who can bring their own services and competencies into a solution. They span the gamut from resellers, system integrators, technology alliance partners, managed service providers to network service providers. The relationship with our partner community is symbiotic and our goal is to make that relationship as integrated and effective as possible.

Learn more about Equinix reseller and alliance partners.

See our global award-winning partners from 2020.

Jules Johnston Former Senior Vice President, Global Channel
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