A Review of 2013 – A view from the Sales Associates of 2012

Tim Murphy, one of our Sales Associates of the 2012 programme, takes a look back over 2013

Its been a while since the Computacenter Sales Associates posted on here, so there is much to catch up on…

The first important thing of note is that we have now been joined by the bigger and better than ever Associate Programme encompassing Sales, Line of Business and Services Associates.  We would like to wish them the best of luck over the next 18 months we are sure you are going to love it!

“A fantastic understanding of the work that goes on ‘behind the scenes'”

So what has happened in the last year?  Well there’s too much to cover for one blog so we have picked some highlights. In the first six months, we spent time with the Inside Sales, Partner Management, Bids, Marketing and Propositions teams. These rotations provided us with a fantastic understanding of the work that goes on ‘behind the scenes’ to make for a smooth and successful operation. We would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who took the time out to help with our development and teach us what we needed to know for the future.

The second half of 2013 had more of a technical and sales focus where time was spent within the various lines of business; Workplace, Software, Datacenter, Networking and Physical Infrastructure.  Plus at the end of the year, we spent time with the Projects team. A great deal of time was spent within these teams where we experienced the technical landscape in which we’ll be working in the future.

Some concepts certainly seemed daunting at first but working with our specialists to break down their knowledge of technology and help us get to grips with it has benefited us hugely. On behalf of the Sales Associates, thank you to the teams involved for their time and effort.

The second quarter of 2013 was certainly an interesting period!  As the rest of the business was very busy in closing the year, we were also in a very important period of our development.  As part of our sales training we had to deliver presentations to some very senior audience members.

The first of these was a 30 minute session with Mike Norris (CEO, Computacenter). In this Mike played the role of a fictitious company CIO who was experiencing budgetary pressures and had difficulty in procuring software.

“We all came out of the experience feeling positive about our progression”

Our goal was to show Mike that we had learnt from the sales training process we had been though, and that we understood how to position Computacenter as a partner to help him achieve his goals. The feedback we received was invaluable – certainly a good audience to pick up from feedback from!  We all came out of the experience feeling positive about our progression since starting the associate programme, but recognising we still have a long way to go to be performing at this level successfully in the future.

The second part of this process was a more in-depth, group-based project on qualifying the challenges of multiple stakeholders within the same fictitious business (played by Computacenter people) and providing a solution. The final presentation was to John Beard (Sector Director, Financial Services and Retail) and Pierre Hall (Line of Business Director, Workplace and Mobile).

The subject matter of this solution was more complex in detail.  It exposed us to how Computacenter identifies challenges, provides solutions and articulates the business benefits succinctly.  It was certainly a difficult process but working together with the Lines of Business Associates we all managed to come through it having learnt a great deal and put some new techniques into action.

In order to get this solution built and be able to understand and articulate the benefits we had to draw upon the experience of a wide range of people – all of whom we thank for their help.

“An experience that really put the last year into perspective for us”

A final activity in which we have been able to get involved was the recruitment process for the Associate Programme 2014.

This was an experience that really put the last year into perspective for us since it was only a year ago that we were going through the same rigorous assessment process ourselves.  Being sat on the other side of the table this time, helping out candidates where possible was certainly rewarding. Working alongside the senior members of sector sales, lines of business and services for the respective process gave us the opportunity to reflect on the last year and the knowledge we have been able to build up through working on such an involved and structured programme.

Now working as buddies to the new associates we will be able to pass on our learning from rotations and help to continue with their growth in the same way that everybody around Computacenter has helped us.

To summarise, the last year for us has been a steep learning curve – working with a wide variety of people within Computacenter and being exposed to many areas of the business. We have six months left on the programme now working with the Contractual Services team and then moving into Internal Account Management.

We know we have a long way to go over the next six months in terms of learning and development but we’re feeling optimistic that by the end we will have achieved our goal of successfully completing the programme, and moving into Account Management. We hope you found this update informative. We will soon be handing over responsibilities for this blog over to the members of the Associate Programme 2014 to give you a view of their journey through Computacenter.

All the best

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