B2B Tech Talk with Ingram Micro
B2B Tech Talk with Ingram Micro

Episode · 2 years ago

How to Simplify the Digital Transformation | Cisco Series

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Today, every company is experiencing some kind of digital transformation. Businesses that want to maintain relevancy are integrating tech into their business models to increase efficiency and improve customer experience. 

Wouldn’t it be nice if digital transformation made things at your company simpler, too? 

On this episode of B2B Tech Talk live from Ingram Micro’s ONE event, guest host Logan Lyles (Sweet Fish Media) meets up with Peter Graber, executive director of advanced solutions at Cisco at Ingram Micro, and Craig Cieplinski, the director of partner operations at Cisco

They discuss:  

  • Why embracing digital transformation is essential to your business 
  • How to use automation to simplify digital transformation 
  • Why customer success should be the driving force of digital transformation  

Follow us on Twitter @IngramTechSol #B2BTechTalk 

Sponsored by Cisco and Ingram Micro Financial Solutions 

Listen to this episode and more like it by subscribing to B2B Tech Talk on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or Stitcher. You can listen on our website.

You're listening to be tob tech talk with angram micro, the place to learn about new technology and technological advances before they become mainstream. This special edition one episode is sponsored by Cisco, taking your business a level up. Let's get into it. Welcome back to be tob tech talk with Ingram micro. I'm your guest host today, Logan Lyles, with sweet fish media. We're actually recording on site here in Denver, Colorado, at the Ingram micro one event and we're going to be talking about a big topic affecting all of us lately and our customers, digital transformation. And to cover that topic today we've got craigs of Plensky, the operations director for US distribution at Cisco. We've also got Peter Greber, the executive director of Cisco Business at Ingram Micro. Craig Gater, how's it going today? Awesome. Thanks for having US going great. Thanks. Lord. You guys enjoying the event so far? Absolutely, we are awesome, awesome. Well, I'm going to kick it over to you guys. You know, there are a lot of different ways to define digital transformation. I would love for you guys to unpack that term from your perspective. As we kick it off today. I think you know, if you look at today, I think almost every company, including Ingram, is going through some sort of digital transformation. You know what that means is that companies are integram reading technology into their business models to create efficiencies or dramatically improve the customer experience. So to me, it's all about staying ahead, preparing your business for the new and changing technologies and embracing those technologies and using them to solve problems and or create a better experience. I love it, Peter Greg Yeah, Peter Exactly. You know, we look at it from a third platform perspective right, when you're looking at those technologies, it's cloud mobility, its social business, big data analytics. Right, organizations have to leverage...

...the newer digital complemencies to transform every step of the value chain. To Be Successful in these days, leads to the creation a new revenue streams for them, the elimination of inefficient, redundant processes. It's going to be critical and shifting away from repetitive day to day tasks to be more strategic and be critical for organizations to remain competitive and just quickly unfolding digital era and beyond it team must embrace these digital transformations to be able to design the right infrastructure to achieve those goals that they have. Absolutely. So let's talk a little bit about some specific examples of where, you know it digital disruption happening at the intersection between people, business and technology, is kind of how I define it. Where where those things are happening. Can you guys speak to some examples of where that intersection is, is happening and the real world business results that are coming out of that? Yeah, absolutely, and in fact I have a couple examples, you know. I think the first one is a very simi full consumer example that pertains to movie streaming. I think we all remember the days when you had to get in your car and drive your vote local video store or blockbuster with the hopes that they had the movie in stock that you wanted to see, wait in line, having to cash out, maybe buy some snacks that you didn't need or didn't want because they're sitting there in front of your face, driving home and then, at that time yet settling down and actually watching the movie and then, hopefully not forgetting to return it, you know, the next day so you don't get additional fees. Yeah, and you look at today. Today it's as simple as subscribing, clicking a button on your remote and having the movies right there in front of you, whether it's Netflix, Hulu, Amazon prime. List goes on and on. Disney plus, masins plus, Yep. So how easy is at right? So I think that's a really good example of digital transformation that affects, you know, all big chunk of the population. I would say for Ingram, we've made investments in improving the digital experience for our partners. So we're using automation now to help our partners with the transaction, with direct connections into CCW.

So now our partners have instant access to order status, to being able to create your own quotes, to turning that quote into an order. It is extremely enhanced the customer experience because it's taking the slas down from hours two minutes. Right you think about the fact that a partner no longer has to contact their inger marker sales up anymore, either through a phone call or through an email. All that information now is available on their fingertips. It is creating a speed to market for them that they've never seen before. In addition to increase efficiencies, internally for our partners. Yeah, and the consumer example that you gave, I can see that. You know, the the turnaround of a quote the same as you know what we've seen in how soon I decide I want to run a movie to the time that I'm watching a movie. Absolutely yeah, really great example, Craig. Yeah, thanks, Logan. So, you know, just an example for me, I mean I go back to when I started in the industry. Right, all of our meetings as sales perspective, we're done in person or my phone call. All right, yet to make a phone call, try and organize a call just by calling, getting a voicemail, leaving that. Now it's moved dramatically right, email, video on demand with, you know, a technology like webecks. You know, we look at the evolution of the cell phone. Isn't another example? You know now that's a device. It harnesses many, many applications that allow us to connect and communicate differently, and that's just in the last ten to twelve years or so. You know, customers demand simplification at all this. You know, we in the continuation of their digital transformation. And another example for me that that his home really close. I've got a son that's three right, and he literally knows how to use an IPAD and iphone as well as I do and it really does give me that ability to connect with him when I'm on the road. So those technologies allow that digital transformation in a lot of different ways. You know, another example, going back to something I think it's really, really important, simplification. You know, we followed this approach a Cisco Right we acquired a company, Rocky, a couple years go. Their mantra and their direction that they went to everything simple, it's automated, it's intelligent, secure in the market right. It's...

...a new way of doing networking. It's ultimately leading to the best customer experience for our partners and they're on customers critical way for us to doing it. Users are able to deploy modern configure them rock equipment, you know, using a Dashboart web interface, totally different than what Cisco had for years with command line interface, but completely different way to go about it. It's transformed our business dramatically and I would actually say to add on to that. You know, if you think about the opportunity in front of our partners that Morocchi is allowed them to scale tremendously, especially when you look at at overhead. So no longer they have to send out teams to assess networks, to do some simple installs to make sure the network is secure. All that could be done remotely through the cloud now. So now they could take that overhead and focus it on other areas of their company. So at Ingrome we've realized this opportunity for our partners have been really embraced it. We've launched a program called rocky voyage earlier this year that allows us to enhance the Moroki practice for our partners or, in some cases, help them build a practice, to offer them things like trainings and certifications, teach them how or teach them about the features and the actual value of the MOROCCI solution, which gives them a lug up in the market. There's a term that both of you have used in the conversation so far, and that's customer experience, and you know the way that I look at it. It's IT leaders and business leaders are both responsible for the customer experience and ultimately, you know, the customers success. And so in order for them to be successful making their customer successful, what are some of the key areas. When you guys think about customer success and customers experience, well, I think customers success means a lot of different things, but at the end of the day it comes down to value. Yeah, so, and what that means is is your end customer realizing the perceived value of the solution that you recommended? And that's customer success right there. If they...

...are realizing that value, it extends the sale to other opportunities beyond that. So at Ingrom customer success is part of the conversation. So we want to make sure our partners are enable to sell based on business outcomes so that they can understand the problem that the that the end customer is having and create a solution around solving that problem. And if they do that successfully, the seal actually begins after the sale because and users realizing the value and it's build that trust with the partner. So now they can increase the cell, add on different things, add their own professional services and it basically increase that opportunity. Yeah, and as you look at more repeat business and annuity based business, that trust becomes even more important. Right, absolutely, absolutely. Either hitter right on the head and right is just go continues to move to become a software company. It is all about the after the sale, because initial sale it is about that customer service that you're going to provide in the value you're going to provide that and customer that that allows their outcome and you can't just step away when you do make that initial sale right, is about the customers success. It's going to be sure that the outcome was a benefit to the customer and they see that value as they transform their business. You know, when you're selling subscriptions and software, you have to ensure the customers using it right in turning it on. That's the value and it's just like when we download an application to or iphone. If you don't use it in the first week or so, you're going to forget that you actually get it and you'll probably not renew it or just turn it off. With that one, you have to stick with it, and that's what Cisco wants to do with our partners, is to ensure that that customers success and that activations there. It allows for a simple renewal at that point but also allows for expansion of different offers inside of that customer. Again, just to add on to that pragmentiary renewals. So your renewals discussion becomes a no brainer if the partner is perceiving value of that solution, to the fact that they are so relying on it that you don't even to talk about renals, that they're at the automatically going...

...to do it. So, just to touch on what we're doing at Ingram is, we made investments and created a customer success team that's allowing us to work with our partners oneonone to understand what their needs are to build that practice, where they need to go to take it, and these associates are specifically have been specifically hired to do just that, is focus on the partners customer experience, what they want to do, what their needs are to go ahead and fill those needs. Yeah, I think a lot of people are interchanging customer support these days with absolutely success and customer experience. To me, customer experiences the whole thing, and support and customer success roll up to those and, as you put it, Peter, you know, customer success leads to more sales, absolutely, because that trust is their. The renewal is kind of a non factor and nonnegotiable. It just happens. Yeah, I think customers support is basically solving a problem. You know, you think about the old culture support, like if you have to call for a warranty or something like that, had your clon customer support because you have a problem. You R have an issue. Customer experiences a totally different definition and way of looking at business. Yeah, absolutely. Also, real quick before we jump straight back into the episode today, we want to tell you about Ingram micro financial solutions and how you can maximize your buying power and get to yes with your customers faster. For the last nine years, Ingram micro has been channel pros reader's choice for best financing options. Put The power of our credit and leasing options to work for you. You can easily contact financial solutions at Ingram microcom. All right, let's get back to the show. So, Craig, I know that you know Cisco has a lot of products and services and bringing it back to, you know, our core topic today. Can you speak to some of the areas that Cisco's focused on in helping customers with digital transformation? The big thing for us is ensuring a balance between the performed part of...

...their business right now, because again we're making a significant shift right over to a software company. So a lot of our partners have designed their businesses in concert with the way that the selling motion is. So for the longest time it was about taking down that orchase order, you know, dropping the equipment off, getting it up and running a little bit and then moving out of the next Celle. Now it's a transition. It's a transformation over to new selling model. So a lot of what we're designing is around helping our partners make that balanced transformation over to the other side to sell in that software rule right. That is building a life cycle specialization right, putting investment and profitability dollars into those portions of selling motion and allowing them to be profitable as they make those transitions over. Absolutely well, we love on BB tech talk here to ask our guests at this common question, and both of you being experienced in the area, I would love to hear your thoughts on really what's coming next in technology or where do you see technology moving in the next year. So whether that's kind of reiterating some of the things we've talked about here or something new to the discussion. Peter, do you want to take this one first? Absolutely so. To me, I think it's all about the connection and the speed at which data is transferred. So if you look at some of the advances with G and Wi fi six you know it's going to change the way of how we consume technology. So technology is the backbone of everything that makes our lives easier. So I'm excited to see what happens with ai as that continues to advance. I would look at things like you you see self driving cars. Now what are the advances with that based on the connection speeds? You look at things like Iot and all the advances with an Iot. I think it's an exciting time, but for me it all starts with the connection, the speed of connection, the speed of how that data is transferred, because if you don't have that, a lot of these advances aren't going to happen. Yeah, I was just talking with someone here at the...

Cisco Booth about, you know, hardware and software. With one advancing, than got a catch ups and if they can, you can take advantage of the advances and in both sides. All Right, I love that, Peter Craig. How about you? Yeah, you know, for me it's this speed of change that's incredible. It's never been faster and it's not going to slow down. Right, lines are blurring dramatically. You've got lines blurring between customers and different businesses. You know, what's really interesting is is this digital transformation continues to happen in different industries. Companies are moving from being experts in that particular industry to being a technology company in a particular industry. Prime example of that's like a domino st right. They come from from being a business that was just basically a pizza company actually being a technology company using the technology. You don't understand their customers, understanding by had patterns, understanding who they're selling to, giving a simplified experience. That's going to continue and you're going to see companies that are going to be laggers in this, let me find themselves out of those particular industries, unfortunately, because they're not keeping up with the technology to extend themselves out and be ahead of ahead of the competition. It's going to happen faster. Peter talked about Ai. Over thirty billion dollars annually is being invested in ai out of the Silicon Valley Venture Capital area. That's going to take off and being a very impactful piece of our business going for the next all the eighteen months. I think that makes a lot of sense to me, Craig, because when you mentioned Domino Spizza, I don't picture they're garlicky crust, I picture they're APP and the tracker that they're known for these days. Well, you guys have added a little tell you this. I think were from Buffalo. Yeah, so we don't know what Dominos is. We know the yet we know. Yeah, there we go. Okay, so the lesson there is still afflicable. Right, absolutely, absolutely well, Craig Peter, it was fantastic to talk to you guys. Thank you so much for making some time today. Thank you appreciate it. Yeah, thanks a good well, folks, that wraps up another episode of BB Tach Talk. If you'd like to join the conversation, you can follow us...

...at Ingram Tex soul and use the Hashtag Beb Tech Talk. Guys, if there's anyone listening to this that would like to reach out to you or learn a little bit more about what Cisco's going on, before we completely wrap up today, I want to give you guys a chance to let people know how they could reach out or some resources that you might want to poin them too. Well, I think a basic resources sales connect on CISCOCOM and the easiest way to learn anything about anger micro is to start with your anger marcro sales up, and we will and then it just goes from there. Well, we'll find the answer for them. They'll get the propriate people involved and we'll get that. We'll get them the answer. Great place to start. Peter Again, if anybody does want to find us, we are and we've been right twere absolutely so you can easily reach out to us that way and connect and be more than happy to help out and guide them anyway that they need. I Love I guys. So, folks, you can check out those resources. You can follow us at Ingram Tech Soul. You can use that Hashtag. Thank you so much for tuning into beb tech talk with Ingram micro. If you're not already subscribed to the PODCAST, make sure you do in apple podcasts or whatever app you find yourself listening, although it won't be that Domino's APP right. Thank you, guys. Thanks you've been listening to bedb tech talk with Ingram micro. This special edition one episode is sponsored by Cisco. Be Tob tech talk is a joint production by sweetish media and Ingram micro. Ingram micro production handled by Laura Burton and Christine Fan. To not miss an episode, subscribe today in your favorite podcast player.

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