A well-designed onboarding can easily lay the foundation for future success, but a poorly designed partner onboarding experience can just as easily delay any potential return on your partner acquisition investments. People, process, and technology. These are the core elements that absolutely must be considered when thinking about the way your organization will onboard partners.

The saying still holds true “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”

Onboarding is your organization’s first shot at creating an amazing first impression with your newly acquired channel partners. Do not let that opportunity go to waste!

By exceeding expectations and bringing partners into the fold of your organization efficiently and quickly you will undoubtedly deliver that “wow” first impression you have been working towards. This will ensure that partners commit to your organization today, and tomorrow. You will know you have done an amazing job when channel reps leave partner organizations and come back to you to do business again! Do not skimp on investing in partner onboarding.

The reason is not just to simply create an impression on the channel partners but also to avoid making premature conclusions. The purpose of a streamlined onboarding process is to help organizations convert talented candidates into successful long-term employees, and that is only possible when the start of the association is right.

Partner Onboarding is not just about giving to partners, it is also about making sure your organization uncovers which partners are going to fulfill their end of the agreement. Nothing is worse than investing months or years trying to land a partner, only for that partner to lose all interest the moment onboarding begins.

Don’t re-invent the Wheel!

Chances are that if your organization is investing in a partner program, it has an HR department that handles recruiting, hiring, and training new employees. Start here to understand what content and training has already been developed that you can use in your channel.

After that, head on over to the individual leading your sales enablement efforts. It is common in channel technology today to leverage Learning Management Solutions, so your company already has technology in place, but also has spent a lot of resources on filling that tool with the content you are wishing you had.

Then, talk with your partners. What do they want to receive from you, to feel confident in bringing your solution to the market?

Between your readily available solutions already in place within your organization, plus the feedback your partners give you, chances are you already at the finish line with everything you need to deliver an amazing partner onboarding experience.

When we acknowledge that 69% of employees stay with organizations for more than 3 years, and productivity increases 50% or more when standardized training is in place it really is a surprise to us that more companies do not start their thinking here.

Don’t reinvent the wheel, simply take what is already proven to work today, and adapt it for your channel onboarding tomorrow.

Enablement and Learning as a Culture

It is well understood that organizations that can recognize the tremendous benefits of a successful channel all have one thing in common, they have cultures that support channel partnerships. This does not just have to be in relation to revenue and deal registrations, it can (and must) extend into partner onboarding.

As mentioned above, the content and information you might need to support a partner onboarding strategy already likely exists in some form. If you are facing roadblocks in trying to access that material, it could be a sign of a larger symptomatic problem within your organization. Do not run away, or freak out, but seek to understand the hesitation your colleagues might be experiencing as it relates to the use of their content in the channel.

Contribute to your organization’s channel culture by taking the opportunity to show them how their amazing work can reach even more eyeballs.

Investing in Growth

Let us say that your organization is simply too young to have invested in a formal Learning Management Solution, that is ok! Most Partner Relationship Management solutions on the market today have enablement, playbooks, and certification modules that are easily configured and deployed.

Ultimately the tool is not what is important, it is the methodical approach you might take in building out the necessary steps for a partner to feel like you care about their onboarding experience!

Channel partners engage more often, and at a higher level of attention with organizations that give them the right opportunity to highlight their skills and commitment to the relationship. Sellers and partner organizations see onboarding and enablement as contributions to their personal growth, which is a leading indicator of successful channel growth.

Channel partners look up to an association that gives them the right opportunity for Partner training and provides a platform where they can display their skills as well. Channel partners help in the revenue generation; hence they would look forward to their personal growth as well.

At Vartopia, we can help get you to get started by delivering an amazing partner onboarding experience! Request a demo today