CA Seeks to Support Trusted Advisors with Portal
CA Inc. is building a network of partners who can take advantage.
- By Scott Bekker
The Islandia, N.Y.-based software giant kicked off its Onsite PC Protection
Program in September after running the offering in beta for several months
with 300 companies, including computer service franchisers Geeks on Call
of Norfolk, Va., and Computer Troubleshooters, which has its U.S. headquarters
in Decatur, Ga.
According to George Kafkarkou, CA's senior vice president of worldwide
commercial sales and strategy, the program is designed for partner companies
of any size. CA, itself a Gold Certified Partner, is also closely involved
in the Microsoft Small Business Specialist program; Kafkarkou confirms
that the company is seeking Microsoft partners for the Onsite PC Protection
Although end-user customer satisfaction is important, CA really developed
the new program with the needs of partner business owners and their technicians
in mind, Kafkarkou says. "We happen to believe that the market revolves
around the influencer: the onsite technician. We do not believe the market
revolves around a vendor like CA."
CA's core investment is in a Web-accessible platform, in development
for the last two years. The platform, which technicians access from the
customer's computer, consists of customized e-commerce portals for transactions,
payment histories and report-generation. The site includes tools for diagnosing
virus and spyware vulnerability, privacy holes and performance issues.
Any problems a technician discovers can immediately be addressed by downloading
CA software directly to the customer's computer.
Membership in the CA program brings round-the-clock product technical
support, discounts on CA consumer and SMB solutions for business owners,
a line of credit for partner business owners, cash incentives for technicians
and rebates to end users for switching security software providers. A
welcome kit for new partner members also includes free software valued
by CA at $1,500.
A one-time, $100 application fee is refunded upon the members' first
customer deal, Kafkarkou says. There is no annual fee.
Fulfillment and credit checks are handled by CA's e-commerce distributor,
Digital River of Eden Prairie, Minn. For more details, visit http://ca.com/onsite.
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.