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Building a thriving business around your SAM practice

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Helping customers understand their solutions

Crayon is a global top 10 Microsoft consulting partner operating in 22 countries with offices in 20 different cities. Crayon’s SAM-first Cloud First strategy aims to optimize the client’s ROI from investments. Over 60 percent of Crayons 900+ worldwide team are high-end technical consultants (SAM, Cloud Architects or Infrastructure Consultants) with over half of its worldwide revenues being driven directly from customer consulting fees.

Crayon’s number one focus is to help customers understand how to best use the software they have. This effort helps customers maximize the value of their existing IT environments. With an accurate, comprehensive assessment of its customers’ IT environments, Crayon has found tremendous success mapping out the future of those environments.

“We think of ourselves as a consulting organization with two different areas of focus: Software Asset Management consulting and license sales,” said Crayon Singapore CEO, Sandeep Angresh. “Our goal is to help large organizations understand how their assets are being utilized.”

SAM as a point of entry

After purchasing a set number of software licenses, most enterprises—of all sizes and across all industries—pay little to no attention to how those software licenses are used. As a result, when customers are making purchasing decisions, they rarely see the big picture. Often, they either buy something they don’t need, or they own something they need but don’t know they have. Crayon has built a thriving business around calling attention to this lack of visibility and then working to optimize its customer’s operational expenses.

Crayon has pioneered a unique sales motion, leading with Software Asset Management (SAM) services as a means to educate its customers on their current use of technology. From there, Crayon works with its customers to identify a path forward. These engagements not only afford the customer an opportunity to optimize their existing technologies—they also provide Crayon with intimate knowledge of its customer’s needs from which to develop a custom IT roadmap tailored to the customer’s business environment. Currently, this makes Crayon stand out within the Microsoft Partner Network. While many partners offer SAM services, few lead sales conversations with SAM.

Account teams structured to address customer needs

IT customers’ priorities have changed. Customers now value business outcomes and vendor relationships over speeds and feeds. Crayon has structured its account teams to address this shift and maximize SAM stories in every account.

Crayon’s account teams typically consist of three members—an account manager, a SAM consultant, and a cloud architect. Each account team member owns a different relationship within the customer’s organization. The account manager conducts business with business owners, the SAM consultant works with finance and compliance teams, and cloud architects engage with IT. This three-pronged approach is supported by the insights from Crayon’s SAM practice. It ensures that customers stay informed and make decisions about which services best suit their needs based on solid data. Working closely together—from the evaluation stage to roadmap building—builds informed and enduring customer relationships.

By leading with SAM consulting services, Crayon ensures its customers always optimize their ROI on their technology investments. Crayon’s account team structures, armed with an innovative value proposition rooted in intimate knowledge of their customer’s deployments and software usage, achieve unmatched success in a growing space.

We enjoy training partners as we understand that a rising tide lifts all boats.

- Sandeep Angresh, CEO

Experts in the partner community

Crayon’s expertise in SAM has given the company a reputation for excellence. With a strong understanding of how a successful SAM practice can ignite future business, Crayon has blazed a trail for other Microsoft partners looking to establish deeper, more long-term relationships with their customers. Working with Microsoft, Crayon has begun to train other Microsoft partners on how to run a successful SAM practice and how to best benefit from the insights an effective SAM practice provides.

Crayon is happy to have provided a blueprint for the Microsoft Partner Network on how to parlay a successful SAM practice into widespread organizational success.

“We are starting to train other partners on how to do effective software asset management. We have some of the best people in the industry, with a unique set of tools and platforms as well as a framework for how to best capitalize on a SAM practice,” said Angresh. “We are a few months away from the first of these trainings but hope to share our story to help others utilize SAM to accelerate their growth and successes.”

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