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Leading IT Market Research and Advisory Firm Cites AvayaBusinessPartner Program as Milestone for Convergence Industry

  • Avaya's "Masters in Convergence" coaching and workshops for resellers called "an inherently bold stroke" in convergence space

Avaya has created a new consulting program to give its BusinessPartners the skills, tools and ongoing support they require to better serve their enterprise customers implementing converged communication solutions.

Avaya Inc. (NYSE:AV), a leading global provider of business communications software, systems and services, has created a new consulting program to give its BusinessPartners the skills, tools and ongoing support they require to better serve their enterprise customers implementing converged communication solutions.

Through workshops and one-on-one consulting, the Avaya "Masters in Convergence" program offers training to BusinessPartners on topics such as sales, marketing, business development and services. It is designed to give BusinessPartners tools and knowledge to conduct a professional convergence audit of its company, and develop and execute a business plan for converged communications systems that fit their inpidual needs for increased productivity and profits.

In a recent report*, IDC research director for Network Channels and Alliances, Ken Presti, praised Avaya's "Masters in Convergence" program as "an inherently bold stroke, given its mission of helping channel partners build better business practices beyond the primary, vendor-focused issues around sales and technical capabilities."

According to Harry Jacobs, president, DJJ Technologies, an Avaya Platinum certified BusinessPartner based in Islandia, New York, the program gave DJJ a detailed audit of its business, benchmarked DJJ against "best practices" in the industry, prioritized areas needing attention and coached DJJ with experienced consultants who are helping DJJ's Management team design a three-year business plan for the reseller.

"The 'Masters in Convergence' program is helping us focus on and develop strategic plans for those aspects of our business that are critical to be able to best serve our customers in convergence solutions," said Jacobs. "For example, we now plan to completely overhaul our sales compensation plan based on benchmarking within our industry that the program helped us identify as an area of improvement for our continued growth."

Three-tier delivery system provides complete training
The Avaya "Masters in Convergence" program has three components:

  • Best Practices/Benchmarks Forum: A two-day kickoff event that enables participants to learn about convergence best practices from industry experts in areas such as products and competitive strategies, marketing and business development, and financial structures and metrics. They also learn how to conduct a professional convergence audit of their business, using an advanced tool developed exclusively for the program.
  • Skill-Up Workshop: Based on the results of their convergence audit, BusinessPartners develop a set of targeted skills and knowledge in areas such as building a strong convergence brand, developing the optimal organizational structure, recruiting a high performance sales team, and partnering for profit. BusinessPartners also learn how to build and deploy an effective business plan to guide their companies in the right competitive direction.
  • One-on-One Coaching: Avaya provides BusinessPartners with six months of inpidual consultation as well as follow-up tools to jointly develop content and analysis, explore new ideas and approaches, and pursue elements BusinessPartners need to help create a convergence business that effectively serves its customer base.

"We recognize that our BusinessPartners must continually evolve as providers of convergence solutions, and our support and training for Avaya BusinessPartners must also evolve," said Todd Meister, vice president, North America Channel Sales, Avaya. "The Avaya 'Masters in Convergence' program is designed to enable BusinessPartners, using industry 'best practices,' to provide excellent support and services to their enterprise customers which are looking to implement IP telephony and converged applications."

"Masters in Convergence" training is offered by invitation to Avaya's certified global BusinessPartners, which provide Avaya solutions for businesses of all sizes.

Recently, Avaya also created a "Partners for Growth" program for BusinessPartners committed to serving small and medium businesses. Based on nominations by Avaya's sales organization, and with joint investments from Avaya and its BusinessPartners, resellers committed to grow their convergence business and competencies are offered training in convergence for their sales and technical teams, and guidance on effective ways to bring converged solutions to their customers.

About Avaya
Avaya Inc. designs, builds and manages communications networks for more than one million businesses worldwide, including over 90 percent of the FORTUNE 500®. Focused on businesses large to small, Avaya is a world leader in secure and reliable Internet Protocol telephony systems and communications software applications and services.

Driving the convergence of voice and data communications with business applications — and distinguished by comprehensive worldwide services — Avaya helps customers leverage existing and new networks to achieve superior business results. For more information visit the Avaya Web site:, or

*Source: IDC, Avaya's Partner Consulting Initiative: A Masters in Convergence, IDC #31846, September 2004.

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