Hexagon builds partner portal with Skuid, integrating acquired partner ecosystem
Hexagon, a global technology company providing sensor, software, and autonomous solutions, needed a better way to engage partners — especially those it gained through a recent acquisition. The organization needed to mobilize a variety of partners across its sales and business processes. With Skuid it’s taking a phased approach to building a modern partner portal that serves and enables all types of partners.
Our Partners are an extension of Hexagon’s sales force. By providing an intuitive portal experience with access to sales tools, training and product content to help them sell and grow is a win for both Hexagon and our partners.
Channel Operations Manager
Hexagon, a global leader in digital reality solutions, combining sensor, software, and autonomous technologies, faced the challenge of effectively engaging partners. With a workforce exceeding 24,000 employees, Hexagon's partner integration became increasingly complex due to its expansion through acquisitions. The recent acquisition of a software product brought a sizable partner base, requiring a new Partner Portal with improved sales and enablement tools. Acquired partners encountered difficulties accessing resources through their previous SharePoint experience, necessitating a more intuitive and flexible solution. Furthermore, Hexagon's existing Partner Portal implementation, while resembling a website, offered limited functionality. A modern and user-friendly partner portal became a critical requirement, with phased support for both existing and newly acquired partners.
Following the acquisition, Hexagon recognized the need for a robust Partner Relationship Management (PRM) solution. Instead of a conventional menu-driven experience, Hexagon aimed to maximize the value of its existing tools and resources. Leveraging Salesforce and drawing inspiration from Skuid's successful portal implementations, Hexagon selected Skuid as its partner to revolutionize partner engagement.
Collaborating with Skuid in two-week sprints, Hexagon embarked on developing a minimum viable phase 1 product. The objective was to transition incoming partners from their legacy systems to the new portal by September 2022. Phase 1 focused on establishing a strong foundation for partners, including a streamlined deal registration process. Hexagon envisioned the portal as partners' go-to "cockpit," featuring attention-grabbing carousels for vital resources such as upcoming events, product information, certifications, and training. By keeping partners aligned while performing tasks like deal registration, Hexagon aimed to optimize their experience.
The new portal will unify partners by utilizing the same opportunity record type as internal sellers. Once newly acquired partners are onboarded, existing partners will seamlessly integrate, simplifying pipeline management and enhancing forecasting accuracy. Future iterations of the portal will introduce additional features, including Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ), referral processes, Market Development Funds (MDF), and more.
Deal registration details
For channel partners, a streamlined, transparent deal registration process is key.
For the new portal, when a partner attempts to register a deal, the organization can then examine the rules of engagement to determine if the partner can proceed with that transaction. For instance, does the deal already exist in the system because another partner attempted to register it before them?
Once the deal is approved, the system will convert it to an opportunity that the channel account manager associated with that partner account will own (to help them manage pipeline and forecast). This gives channel account managers instant visibility on all opportunities coming in from their partners.
For the partner who requested the deal registration, as it progresses, the portal will notify them so that they know it’s been approved and when the opportunity has been created. They’ll be added to the opportunity with the ability to edit it and can begin to manage it through the sales cycle.
By facilitating processes like these in the portal, the organization is giving partners the ability to grow within the program and progress from an authorized partner to an advanced or premier partner.
Robust partner enablement
Given the limited functionality and access of the current system, ensuring access to training materials in the new portal is a huge priority.
Enablement will include product content, and the portal will plug into tools Hexagon already has to include certification and system training.
There’s also an existing app that offers partners guidance on how to sell the products. It will be integrated with the new portal so that newly acquired partners also have access.
As the organization expands partners’ product eligibility, they’ll add courses for those products to the existing training program or app. So, as partners get educated and certified in new products, they can continue to advance in the partner program.
Hexagon's collaboration with Skuid yielded remarkable results, including a streamlined and transparent deal registration process for channel partners. Through the new portal, partners can register deals while adhering to predefined rules of engagement, eliminating duplicate registrations, and ensuring fair transaction processing. Approved deals seamlessly convert into opportunities, empowering channel account managers with instant visibility into their partners' pipeline for efficient management and accurate forecasting. Partners receive timely notifications on approvals and opportunity creation, enabling active deal management throughout the sales cycle.
To support partners in their transition to the new portal, Hexagon prioritizes comprehensive access to training materials within the platform. This includes product content, certification resources, and integration with existing guidance tools. Hexagon's continuous expansion of the partner program's product eligibility will involve adding relevant courses to the training program, enabling partners to continually enhance their expertise and progress within the program.
As Hexagon expands its robust partner program, exciting opportunities arise for both the company and its partners. By enhancing partners' market penetration capabilities, Hexagon empowers them to seize new opportunities and provide specialized knowledge in areas such as public sector engagements. This mutually beneficial growth approach ensures success for all parties involved.