Global Partner Programme - Helping Accredited Organizations to Bang on the Boardroom Door with ITIL® and PPM

Global Partner Programme - Helping Accredited Organizations to Bang on the Boardroom Door with ITIL® and PPM

Selling the enterprise-wide benefits of ITIL and Programme and Project Management (PPM) to businesses and other complex organizations should be the daily bread for anyone making a living in global best practice training.

Selling the enterprise-wide benefits of ITIL and Programme and Project Management (PPM) to businesses and other complex organizations should be the daily bread for anyone making a living in global best practice training.

But the marketing and sales approach across training providers hasn't always concentrated on this and it remains a great, untapped source of prosperity for Accredited Training Organizations (ATOs) and Accredited Consultancy Organizations (ACOs).

Kelvyn Lien-HicksIt's easy to assume that organizations simply know what's good for them in terms of adopting strategic and operational best practices that make their people more productive and give them a fighting chance of becoming market leaders. Well, some do but many don't.

Training in ITIL and PPM is, of course, relevant and important to individuals wanting to enhance their CVs, their skills and their opportunities for career advancement and this has been a fertile ground for ATOs and ACOs. However, there is a bigger prize for training companies in the shape of helping enterprises to understand and embrace the value inherent in organizational best practice training and certification.

It's startling how many large, blue chip companies have not adopted ITIL throughout the whole company and there's much work to be done to inform and educate organizations across the world. Firms might already be using a form of best practice that has grown organically but without a truly unified process throughout the business. This can lead to different sites or offices within the same company taking totally different approaches to best practice without using consistent techniques or terminology.

Not enough has been done to show large organizations what is possible with the right approach: it could be argued that everyone in an organization - not only those with "project manager" in their job title - should be trained in PRINCE2®. Training organizations are well-placed to make that argument and demonstrate the real value of global best practice.

In fact, now is really the time for ATOs and ACOs to revisit their sales and marketing plans and have a response to the problems that organizations don't know they've got or the solutions they don't know how to find. The time to go out hunting for new business is here.

We recognize that this could be a culture change for many training companies, who have sustained their businesses with repeat custom over the years. Smaller companies and proprietor-run consultancies may have focused on business generated from individuals; but it's possible to do that and seek out the bigger deals simultaneously, with the right support in place. But more about the AXELOS Global Partner Programme later!

Getting into hunting for "bigger game" requires a conversation with the board members of a company and examining the potential for company-wide programmes rather than selling to only one department or division within that business. It's about taking a holistic approach to an organization's needs, its "pain points" and coming up with a solution that addresses the big picture rather than just pockets of demand.

Clearly, working this way requires a methodology that might be new to many training businesses, which is why we've launched the AXELOS Global Partner Programme. This is principally about one thing: helping our accredited partners to grow their businesses.

In broader terms, it's also about raising quality in global best practice training, helping to eradicate the "grey market" and providing a badge of quality assurance to help customers recognize where to find accredited training materials and well-qualified people to deliver them.

The programme contains a raft of services for all levels of partners and access to a host of materials and support for your sales and marketing activity.

For example, having access to collateral such as case studies and white papers - which can be re-branded with your own company identity - provide tangible evidence of how companies have improved their productivity and solved other best practice problems. These third party illustrations back up your argument and enable you to be more persuasive with C-level decision makers. For example, the fact that the 2012 London Olympics used PRINCE2 to help realize the event is a compelling case in point.

And, as part of the AXELOS Global Partner Programme, collaboration with partners in the form of round tables is happening around the world. Rather than AXELOS deciding on the best marketing campaign for your region, we felt it was better to listen to people on the ground, respond to local market dynamics and understand what will help them sell their training solutions more effectively.

So, as an example, in Japan this could mean simplifying the methodology for moving from foundation to practitioner level and, in Singapore, improving communications to make companies more aware of ITIL and PRINCE2.

Local market activity might also mean AXELOS co-funded marketing - maybe sponsoring an event or local advertising - to invest in partners' business development.

And, as generating new sales opportunities is difficult enough for any business, we have pioneered a lead generation system: when companies are seeking a training organization they can turn to AXELOS' company search facility to locate potential providers by geography and complete an enquiry form. This lead is then shared with ATOs and ACOs who are signed up to the Global Partner Programme.

A future feature of the programme will include the AXELOS Solutions Sales Team which will both identify leads and assist ATOs with sales training and devising actual training solutions for companies.

Selling solutions is founded on offering products and services which will deliver real value to organizations. In this case, global best practice principles enable business change, continual improvements, support business outcomes and ensure that programme and project management is a success.

Businesses and organizations across the world can transform their operations by adopting ITIL and PPM principles. ATOs and ACOs are in a position to help them achieve that and AXELOS is right behind you to seek out and secure that business.

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