3 Distinct Partner Communities Working Toward a Common Goal

Posted by Mike Fitch on Jan 20, 2022

When two companies come together as one, there’s an extensive checklist of items to vet through to optimize future business success. Some of these checklist items are around the auditing of tools, systems and processes to find redundancies or opportunities for consolidation. When TD SYNNEX formed this past fall, one of the areas to evaluate was our tremendous partner communities, where many of our channel peers gather together to share best practices and bounce ideas off of one another. These communities, Stellr and Varnex from SYNNEX and TechSelect from Tech Data, operated independently of one another, with varying audiences and community members. TD SYNNEX had to evaluate if these communities could each co-exist or if they should be rolled up under a single umbrella.


Not only did TD SYNNEX leadership determine that each of the partner communities was a high priority and had a distinct, niche role to fill, but they also doubled down on the community programs through a re-structure and the appointment of Sammy Kinlaw to lead this new organization. While the new organization, dubbed CommunitySolv, oversees the communities, the platforms themselves will continue to exist in their own unique ways.


Taking it to the next level: The importance of communities


One of the most powerful assets for IT professionals… is each other. Communities are a great way to bring together like-minded individuals to get new perspectives on common, or unique, channel challenges. Communities allow reseller organizations to present their business opportunities and get rewarded with answers in ways that may never present themselves when solely left to internal consultation. Many of the TD SYNNEX communities also offer additional benefits, such as training and enablement opportunities, business growth plans, helpful resources or sales discounts and incentives for members.


Building a robust virtual community takes time, engagement and nourishment. Fortunately, many of our partners that are part of our communities have listened and learned the importance of leveraging a platform like this to better understand the opportunity to gain leads or educate their sales/support teams. Communities offer very tangible benefits, like direct influence on bottom-line numbers, as well as intangible benefits, like growing meaningful connections and building trust in a world of misinformation.


Stellr: Connecting with those that drive cloud growth


Stellr is a cloud community of TD SYNNEX partners, with an MSP focus on as-a-service functionality. Stellr has seen solution providers, VARs and systems integrators come together to drive cloud, IoT, mobility and emerging technologies. Stellr recognizes that the one constant in emerging technologies is change; Stellr presents an ecosystem for customers, partners and vendors to collaborate in order to address this change and thrive through new opportunities.

For Stellr Connect members, you’ll gain exclusive access to like-minded individuals looking to take their business to the next level, just like you. This community has plenty of participation incentives with the ability to earn prizes and rewards for regular engagement. Members also have access to on-demand training and certifications, as well as sales enablement courses and training vouchers.


TechSelect: Empowering elite channel leaders


TechSelect, one of the legacy Tech Data communities, gathers leaders from some of our distinguished reseller partners to empower one another with tools, insights and expertise so that these leaders can do what they do best: lead. Over the past two decades, TechSelect has gathered more than 400 esteemed leaders to share industry insights and forge a new path forward, collectively. TechSelect helps direct and deliver a range of solutions so that the most important opportunities are well-positioned for growth. Some of the benefits of TechSelect:

  • Attract new business
  • Connect with industry peers
  • Grow your business with wider visibility
  • Learn through training and enablement
  • Save through the TD SYNNEX Loyalty Program
  • Share ideas, knowledge and insight

Varnex: Peer-to-peer collaboration for success in the channel

Varnex is one of the legacy SYNNEX communities and is a very technology-driven peer-to-peer reseller member base. Varnex has a 10+ year track record and has historically been more edge and connected device partners with a focus on SMB and government verticals. With the rise of edge computing, this community will have plenty of talking points in 2022.

When you gain access to Varnex, you also get access to a full library of helpful resources and exclusive Varnex Academy courses, where you can learn from industry and vendor leaders, as well as product groups within TD SYNNEX to build your business. All Academy courses are updated regularly so that you are getting timely, relevant content.


Tying it all together: Working toward innovation, together

So, how do these three communities co-exist? During the evaluation process, we determined that of the 850+ partner organizations represented in the community, only about 50 overlapped on more than one community. Stellr, TechSelect and Varnex have different audiences, different benefits, different outcomes, but perhaps most importantly, different experiences. Removing or consolidating these platforms would eliminate their distinguished character and, in essence, dilute their value as a sales and growth engine for the channel.


Looking ahead, you’ll see each of our communities shift focus to changing technologies, to topics like 5G connectivity, cybersecurity awareness or increased mobility in the cloud. Communities allow us to present topics like these and scale to larger audiences in conjunction with our world-class vendors. In addition, as guidelines allow, we’ll want to do more events throughout the year, where regional community members can gather and put a face to a screen name. Our communities will also continue to emphasize collaboration with the common goal of education and certifications in mind.

Ultimately, IT channel members, whether it’s at the vendor level, the solutions aggregator level, the reseller level or the end user, the end goal is to develop technology solutions that make the world a better place to live, learn and work. Communities continue to be an essential way for different roles, different industries, different vertical markets, to put ideas together and solve for innovative outcomes. Together, we’ll keep a strong pulse on technology trends.


Become a member:

About the Author

TD Synnex Editor

Mike Fitch
Content marketer and communicator through and through. ASU grad with more than 10 years of B2B tech marketing/communications experience.