GE Access opens services toolbox

Keystone, Colo. – GE Access has launched a new online Web-based services toolbox to help its North American resellers manage their services business.

These services include online access to active contracts, notification of service renewal opportunities and subsequent quote or options for

renewal, which can be sent to customers, and a services resource library. The library contains online training and sales tools for each phase of the services cycle.

News of the toolbox was made at the distributor’s annual New Frontiers conference here.

There are approximately 300 customers in the U.S. and 60 customers in Canada, where this online toolbox may help, according to the company.

Frances Draper, vice-president of Sun business group at GE Access, said the services were introduced to help resellers keep track of services contracts.

“”In the past, the focus goes to the large contacts and (resellers) don’t pay attention to the little ones,”” she said. The services toolbox gives resellers 90 days notice of when a customer’s contract will expire, she said. This allows resellers to pursue opportunities for consolidation and frees up time spent on back-shop “”stuff”” that can be used to sell.

Britt Hilton, director of sales at Myra Systems Corp., a Sun Services manager and GE Access partner since 1995, said he hopes the online service will allow him to more proactively manage Sun enterprise service contracts.

“”The challenge is to stay on top of what needs to be renewed when,”” said Hilton. “”Anytime you can automate something it is a good thing.””

Myra Systems, a Victoria, B.C.-based systems integrator that focuses on running, operating and managing computers, gets two-thirds of its revenue from services, with the majority of its business going to the B.C. government.

Because the majority of his business is services, Hilton said he hopes this will make his job easier.

“”It’s unique. We couldn’t (do this before) through vendors. It’s a way to get involved,”” said Hilton.

In a joint announcement with McAfee, which signed on as a GE vendor partner in May, the distributor said it will offer resellers a new Network Security Online Module to help them sell network security solutions in the health care and financial services markets.

In May, GE Access began to offer McAfee’s network and host-based intrusion protection products to the channel. Since then, the two companies have signed 28 resellers, some of which include government partners, who have been approved to sell McAfee IntruShield and McAfee Entercept intrusion prevention solutions.

The conference wraps up today.

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