IBM Announces Enhancements to Business Partner Service Program

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SOMERS, N.Y - 15 May 2000: -- IBM today announced major enhancements to its Business Partner Warranty Service Program, designed to increase Partner productivity and address a variety of PC customers' growing services demands.

With these enhancements, IBM is building on its industry-leading, pay-for-performance services structure by increasing Partner bonus levels to 100% for top performers - - and providing new e-business tools that simplify key processes and requirements. Partners also receive improved technical training and can take advantage of the program's new web-based reporting system, warranty reference library and electronic dispatches. These moves will result in faster, more reliable service for IBM customers - - and more revenue opportunities for IBM Business Partners.

"Satisfying IBM customers is the ultimate goal of the Warranty Service Program," said Joseph Ciulla, manager, Channel Service and Support, IBM Personal Systems Group. " IBM Business Partners are service providers, technology consultants and advocates we depend upon to deliver IBM quality and reliability. These program enhancements will allow us to continue to raise the bar on customer service by reducing the time, expense and processes involved in providing world class warranty support to our customers."

"IBM has always been a leader in warranty service and this new program sets IBM apart once again, " said Mark D. Romanowski, vice president, Service, Jade Systems Corporation. "IBM's Warranty Service Program is a major competitive advantage for IBM Business Partners, rewarding consistent high-level performers who have invested heavily in managing their service businesses. IBM is giving us the tools to grow our businesses and provide customers with the service they demand."

Highlights of IBM's Business Partner Warranty Services Program include:

- Bonus for top performers increased up to 100 percent - Effective July 1, the Business Partner Warranty Service Program is being enhanced to increase the maximum premium to 100 percent.

- NEW Techware Plus CD library - Techware Plus is a comprehensive technical support library designed with the technician in mind, with a "Tips and Hints" section, Online Assistant and other tech support features.

- NEW Convenient Web-based reporting - Electronic access to training and performance information for all warranty authorized Business Partners Service Business Consulting - A fee-based Warranty Operations Workshop for technicians, logistics and administrative personnel and service management.

- NEW Preferred Partner Dispatch - A service for Preferred and Premier levels that enables IBM to electronically dispatch Business Partners directly from the IBM PC HelpCenters. Participants will also be able to update records as the calls progress.

- NEW High Availability Parts Program - IBM will ensure the highest parts availability possible on critical parts required to support Netfinity Server products.

- New Course Offerings and Streamlined Training Requirements - IBM has developed three new course offerings to assist Business Partners in improving efficiency, including Excellence in Customer Service; Service Management Operations; and Workforce Management.