To survive, VARs and other channel partners will have to re-invent themselves, but so will the vendors. Channel programs that revolved around providing incentives for partners to sell high-margin, on-premises point products just don't work in the SaaS world. Dave Kubick, Vice President Worldwide of Channels and Alliances at Iron Mountain Digital, a vendor of SaaS and storage-as-a-service data backup and archival solutions says that the best channel partner approaching the SaaS world is one who can create an overall value proposition as opposed to just selling individual products. "If you're just in the business of selling backup and recovery, that is a time-based relationship. You're not going to last very long. But if you're doing it in accordance with other offerings, and complementing other types of products, then your ability to garner margins, retain a customer for a period of time, and enjoy compounding recurring revenues, will certainly offset any short-term loss of top line revenue or top line margin."
Ultimately, though dealing in SaaS solutions will eliminate the huge up-front fees that VARs are used to, the new model provides for more compounding, recurring revenuesâ€”making it much easier to withstand the ups and downs of the industry. This makes the modern-day VAR who embraces SaaS as the primary delivery model "recession-proof"â€”and in today's economy, that's important.