Marching Forward: Takeaways from HP’s Premier Partner Summit and the ‘Birth of the Cool’

Jazz is often described as a collection of syncopated patterns — a variety of unexpected rhythms. But somehow, when the rhythms come together, the sound is sweet. Such was the experience at HP’s Premier Partner Summit in New Orleans. For the third year in a row, HP and its amazing group of copier dealers came together to share innovative ideas for growth, go-to-market strategies and great customer service. Here are my four key takeaways:

HP second line
Second-liners on Canal Street: HP dealers join a traditional New Orleans band for a march along New Orleans’ famous Canal Street at the third annual HP Premier Partner Summit.

1. Security and solutions: Innovation for customer value

Security continues to be highly valued in both the public and private sectors, and we are hearing that HP’s innovation in print security features and tools is indeed making a difference. Many of the same tools and processes HP has used at a global and corporate client level to differentiate our Managed Print Services (MPS) are now available to our dealers, helping them differentiate themselves and be more profitable.

For example, the HP Firmware Assessment tool and HP Print Security Advisory Services help customers understand their current device, data, and document security environments. They help dealers and customers assess for areas of risk and regulatory noncompliance, recommending solutions and helping to customize a plan of action. They also complement the HP Security Manager tool, which streamlines security by establishing a single policy and applying it across the entire fleet, ensuring compliance and protecting workflows.

While other manufacturers are beginning to invest in their own security messages, HP has been a pioneer in the area and continues to lead the pack, offering a broader and wider array of solutions to ensure the security of customers’ networks. Our direct customers appreciate the difference, and we’re dedicated to partnering with our dealers to explain the difference as well.

New solutions are constantly being developed, too. HP Roam and HP JetAdvantage solutions and apps are important pieces to HP’s security offerings, improving customers’ productivity through printing workflows. Contact your HP Premier MPS specialist for more information and stay tuned to the HP Disrupted Space for more details on those.

2. Growth opportunities with HP PageWide Technology

HP reinvented printing with PageWide technology and devices, and these A3 and A4 products are reinforcing our commitment to the MPS channel with their ability to drive more clicks — especially color clicks — for businesses. One of our largest dealers has an HP PageWide device that is running approximately 30,000 pages per month — and after 180,000 pages, it has only had two interventions. This workhorse device is certainly holding true to its reputation as a reliable MFP that delivers high margin color pages.

Now we’re going a step further and driving even more value with ColorSave, an incremental feature for select HP PageWide devices. This unique, new feature allows users print lighter, pastel colors for the same price as PageWide monochrome printing, opening a plethora of unique applications such as color-coded patient records in healthcare and finance to color communications in education. ColorSave is just one example of how PageWide technology opens new and profitable opportunities for our dealer partners, and there are more. The PageWide service concept is extremely lean, with just two long-life maintenance parts producing a very low cost structure. This gives our partners a competitive advantage by increasing their service profitability while increasing service responsiveness and machine uptimes. Be sure to learn more about HP PageWide and ColorSave in this webinar with The Imaging Channel.

Supplies is also an area where dealers have realized how much they can improve their service costs and customer uptime when they choose HP. Tom Senecal of Lasers Resource, an HP Premier Partner, noted that after making the switch to HP’s Quicksilver program, they saw first-time fix rates go from 72 percent to 86 percent; an 85 percent reduction in defective toner cartridges and a 34 percent reduction in service calls — amounting to $80,000 in overall savings.

3. More margin with HP Smart Device Services (SDS)

HP announced a new service tool called the SDS Action Center. It is making Smart Device Services very easy to implement as a standalone software tool, which in turn helps our partners save money with all SDS has to offer.

HP’s Smart Device Services combine device-embedded sensors and cloud-based tools to optimize the way you monitor, manage and diagnose service needs across your entire fleet, dramatically reducing service costs, maximizing device uptime and delivering an exceptional service to millions of devices around the world. SDS’ ability to remotely resolve problems arms service techs with the information they need to achieve higher first-visit fix rates, reducing dealer costs by as much as 17 percent. SDS can also predict failures of key components just before they happen, enabling dealers to solve the issue before it starts and give customers a no-downtime experience.

4. The importance of partnerships

Perhaps the most important takeaway from HP’s Premier Partner Summit is, as the name implies, partnerships! I’ve heard many dealers say how much they value HP’s commitment to the market through the innovative products, solutions and services we offer, but also in how we partner with them and are focused on making business easier.

Like the New Orleans parade that was part of the event, HP’s Premier Partner Summit gathered people together in a charged atmosphere, full of energy and camaraderie. And just like Miles Davis’ celebrated album Birth of the Cool, the various rhythms are coming together to create a new sound that is so satisfying: innovation that delivers value to customers backed up by the melody of growing revenue and margin for HP and dealers – a sound that can only be made through commitment to partnering. I know several of our partners/dealers felt that same energy and enjoyed the event as much as I did. We’ve come a long way, and we’re only going to keep growing

Michael Turner

Michael Turner

Michael Turner is the Director for the A3 Printing and Solutions Category in the HP Americas Organization. Michael has been with HP Inc. since 1995, after working as a consultant in the Management Science/Operations Research field. Since joining HP, he has contributed in roles of business strategy development, current and future product marketing, solution portfolio development, business development, alliance management and sales leadership. Michael earned an MBA from Oregon State University and a BS in Industrial Engineering, also from OSU.