Published: December 20th, 2016

Artificial intelligence (AI). Predictive analytics. Machine learning. Next-generation technologies offer great potential for deal registration, and that potential will be seen within the next five years channel-wide, according to an industry-leading CEO.

“When you do a combined analysis, there will be pattern matching to predict which deals will close or what needs to happen to increase the chances of success. I think that five years from now, every channel manager will look to smart systems to help them to their job better,” said Jay McBain, CEO of ChannelEyes, during a webinar hosted by the Canadian Channel Chiefs Council (C4).

During the webinar, “Deal Registrations: What You Need to Know,” hosted by CDN editor Paolo Del Nibletto, McBain spoke about the effect that next-gen technologies will have on deal registration programs. Deal registration, he said, provides the earliest possible data available for a particular sale. By utilizing that data through automated systems, opportunities could arise that wouldn’t have otherwise.

These opportunities and systems are going to appear in the form of platforms like Salesforce Einstein and IBM Watson – early entrants to the AI/predictive analytics space. These applications can make connections between the millions of data points collected throughout the process of deal registration, and make predictions and correlations that a human could never do.

“In five years, I believe that every partner account manager will be taking advantage of computer-augmented selling. Sales productivity continues to dip and the era of distracted selling will be helped by machines doing some of the heavy lifting in the background,” said McBain.

The need for advanced technology stems from the basic needs of deal registration. McBain pointed out that indirect sales represent 75 per cent of world trade, and a good deal registration program can do wonders for business. For channel chiefs, deal registration is a top priority. It directly impacts sales, and it provides critical data in order to make coverage, capacity, and profitability decisions for the organization.

Consistency is key when it comes to a good deal registration program, an aspect that automated services will help with. According to a CompTIA survey, 27 per cent of respondents said that inconsistency was a major challenge and a key reason why they would leave a vendor, said McBain.

But consistency isn’t the only area that will be improved. Areas such as visibility and reducing conflict will also benefit. With systems recording competitive intelligence on deals shared by channel partners, vendors will be able to pull additional insights on pricing and strategy.

“It enhances communication by having a system of record in one place and ensure better margins for partners,” said McBain. “Overall, it improves channel partner loyalty and encourages partners to write more business. They’ll want to work with vendors who look out for them.”