We’ve learned that Sage North America plans to implement new fees for partners who have customers change to another partner as well as drop their Reseller of Record (ROR) requirement that customers changing consultants provide a reason for the change.
Thankfully there will be a new certification which partners may enroll in to avoid Sage’s upcoming fees for ROR (Reseller of Record) management.
UPDATE: 4-2-2012 – this is an April Fool’s 2012 post.
This new ROR charge (effective 4-1-2012) is to reimburse Sage’s cost of entering ROR forms into the Atlas portal. The charge is the greater of a $500 administrative fee (Due when the ROR is filed) or 100% of first year commissions. The new cost is explained as covering only a very tiny portion of Sage’s internal expense for “figuring out how to enter a ROR form into the new Atlas partner portal”.
The only way a partner can avoid this fee is to enroll in Sage’s brand new Atlas Certified Partner Optimized Originator (aka POO certification).
POO certification is a 7 week off-site, $ 2,000, intensive education which includes one week at the new Sage POO Academy in Irvine, CA. After certifying participants will be able to log into Sage’s Atlas portal and manage their own ROR requests to avoid any Sage fees.
Sage notes they will allow partners to use Co-Op funds for up to the full amount of the certification fee. Partners should however expect a minimum six to twelve month reimbursement delay while “Sage searches for the Atlas option to authorize co-op reimbursement”.
Sage have clarified that the new fee-for-ROR policy applies ONLY to non POO certified Partners.
For partners who have not achieved POO certification , the fee applies ONLY in situations where a customer has elected not to join a new Sage subscription pricing plan at the time they change Sage partners. When a customer changing partners refuses to also migrate to a subscription plan the fee will apply to BOTH the partner the customer is moving FROM and to the partner that the customer is moving TO.
A Reseller of Record form (ROR) is used to notify Sage when a customer using one of their products has made a decision to change the consultant they use in connection with support and other consulting services. This alignment also affects the payment of future commissions and ability to order new products for the customer.
Sage indicated to us that the processing fee is meant to align “value received” and the new Atlas internal processing system “would not allow an ROR change without also requiring a new partner certification or somehow reducing partner margin”.
By training Sage partners to become POO specialists Sage allows them to avoid these new ROR fees entirely by “entering their own ROR into the portal”.
When reached for comment one Sage executive speaking anonymously said:
We are as shocked and upset as anyone to discover that Atlas allows us to make positive changes to customer policies without any added fee, but changes to partner policies require a fee or margin reduction. Obviously this is something we missed when evaluating portal options and we hope to fix this sometime after our financial year closes in 2018 or ‘whenever we find the damn option’
For partners not POO certified , Sage will announce Easy Pay financing enrollment as a requirement of continued partnership. Future ROR fees will be drafted automatically from non-certified partner’s accounts. A credit application will shortly be mailed to partners to re-verify eligibility for Easy Pay. More details at the link below or watch for the announcement shortly from Sage.
Expect another Sage announcement on Monday about a slightly lower level of certification, SHART (Subscription Help And Reseller Transfer), which will not require academy attendance and is for partners who try really hard but can’t make POO.