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Understanding Partner Relationship Management and Its Importance

By Mei BeiNo Comments

Having a solid network of channel partners is essential for business expansion. For the majority of organizations, partnerships are now essential to providing value to their customers. A variety of solutions can be used to broaden the audience and add value for customers as the digital revolution moves forward quickly. Partner relationship management enables you to manage your relationships with partners and their interactions with you. PRM is an essential feature of any partner program and is intended to hasten the engagement and sales of products and services. Being able to serve all clients more effectively, the outcome in happier and more satisfied partners. 

What is Partner Relationship Management (PRM)? 

To manage its connections with partners who market and sell its products, an organization may utilize a variety of software, processes, and practices together referred to as partner relationship management (PRM). Partner relationship management encompasses a variety of business processes and functions. The partner lifecycle, partner portal, customer database, and sales metrics are all common components of PRM systems, which are frequently web or cloud-based. Systems for managing partner relationships also monitor operations, pricing, and discounting. PRM varies from managing co-marketing partnerships as well as more sophisticated programs. Hence, it has become a crucial component of effective channel management and partner programs, being used in onboarding and training partners in business planning. 

Functions of Partner Relationship Management

The functions of a PRM platform might differ between solution providers and be tailored to the needs of each client. There is no comprehensive list of features as providers of PRM solutions continue to add new features with other business applications. The adapted PRM platform must be modified to your business model. However, the majority of PRM applications will contain the following features:

Partner lifecycle management

Includes partner recruitment, onboarding, monitoring leads, and profiling 

Partner contracting

Includes contract renewal and contract archiving

Partner enablement 

Orientation and training, partner certification, and classroom or webinar registration

Partner engagement

Engaging through emails, newsletters, community building, event registrations, and other notifications


Features for managing partner commissions, managing partner rebates, growth incentives and rewards, managing loyalty and rewards programs, and gamification


Deal registration, channel sales, market development, and market insights sharing


Creation of knowledge databases, maintenance of service requests, and coordination of partner service or product returns

Benefits of Partner Relationship Management

Reliable partner relationship

  • Partner recruitment 

PRM can assist organizations in contacting potential partners through various online platforms such as email or social media. PRM helps set up and monitor partners as they pass through the different steps of the onboarding process, which is an important stage of partnering with others. 

  • Improved alignment 

When you and your partners have a trustworthy partner connection, your interests and goals should be completely aligned. It is not merely about depending on one another to complete required tasks. It is working together to accomplish common goals, perhaps higher sales or developing a more efficient business model.

Stronger partner retention 

  • Reduce Churn

You may reduce churn by improving partner retention using a partner relationship management system. In other words, if partners are given a better experience, they are less likely to depart from the current partnership with your organization.

  • Increased loyalty

Partner relationship management can assist organizations in forging closer ties with their partners, which may increase customer loyalty to their brands. When the partners feel they are a part of the organization, they are more likely to be more dedicated to this partnership. Hence, it is important to assure them that they have a voice in the organization.

Accurate data collection

You will be able to precisely gauge each partner's contribution using the correct PRM technology. This gives you the opportunity to give recognition to partners who are assisting you in reaching your sales targets and to make adjustments for those partners who are lagging behind. Several PRM solutions provide partner validation checks, which allow the confirmation of the accuracy of submitted data before it is recorded in your system. It is to ensure that your team is making decisions based on reliable information with this feature in place.

Better information exchange

Any successful relationship must allow for the exchange of information. Partners usually require quick and simple access to information for them to monitor the status of their clients. If there is a lack or delay of information, partners would be impatient with how long things take. If physical meetings with partners are not possible in any circumstance, the PRM solution allows channel automation technologies to connect in real time and smoothly with them.

Increase brand awareness 

  • Elevate brand awareness with clients.

Customers can discover more about your company and the wide range of goods and services you provide with the aid of PRM. Clients can better comprehend your business's performance and how it can help them with the information provided. As a result, this promotes brand loyalty and plays a significant role in the consumer experience. 

  • Reaching larger audience

Market reach can be widened by partnering with others. There is more possibility to get access to a completely new market of potential customers who were not aware of your organization and its services and products. Both parties' sales may rise as a result, and more revenue streams will be generated for everyone.

Benefits of having partner relationship management

Managing Partnerships

Pick your partners wisely

Understanding how partners operate, their profit strategy, and their position in the market is crucial. It is important to note that taking on too many partners could result in over-distribution, disputes, and dissatisfied clients. It is vital to have just as many partners as required to achieve your goals. 

Training program

Partners require time to comprehend your market, product, and business, unlike your own direct salesforce. They might also work for several other vendors. A training policy should be made to be understood and prepare a budget for it. Rewards that can be given to well-performing partners should also be prepared in advance.

Let go of underachievers 

Keeping multiple partners is not always the best idea because partner relationships may falter. Reevaluate your relationship with all your partners if they are underperforming and not meeting your needs. Perhaps the partners require additional knowledge or training, or perhaps it would be preferable to part ways with those partners rather than waste more resources.

Practices When Implementing Partner Relationship Management Platforms

Keep your communication clear

Regular communication is a crucial success component to ensure that your PRM software gets used by your users. It is vital to publicize the launch and explain what users may expect from the platform. To announce the PRM software, it can be first communicated through emails. The aim is to induce users to visit the portal, then follow-up announcements, advice, and Q&As can be provided. 

Process exclusive to the PRM platform

Making some processes dedicated to the system is one approach to guarantee that users use the PRM portal as part of their regular working procedures. Given that specified tasks must be accomplished on the portal, it would be quite effective. The portal could become the main location for exchanging information, documents, and other important tasks like lead distribution and assistance. Contact information and profile updates can be done on the PRM portal as well. 

Highlighting the PRM platform benefits

Users will be more likely to use the PRM portal if the value is demonstrated to them. If they do not find it valuable, it is likely for users to shift their attention away because it may be seen as adding extra work and complications. Be careful to define everything precisely and to convey the advantages of the entire system. For instance, a partner may find all the material or information they require, such as manuals and documents, in one location when they need it. A PRM platform should ultimately improve the partner experience.

Reduce manual data entry

When organizing and tracking marketing campaigns, some manual entry will always be necessary, but you should endeavor to minimize it as much as possible. Users would not be eager to utilize the system if its operations require them to enter data for each action. Use technologies to automatically import and update data, and limit data entry to the most necessary fields.

Simplify processes

Users will gradually begin to skip some steps when a process requires them to complete numerous difficult steps. Processes that are overly complicated decrease the likelihood that users will utilize the PRM system, much like the burden of manual entry. Reduce the number of steps necessary in processes by using pointers or buttons to guide users through the portal and divide longer stages into several smaller ones.

Choosing Your PRM Platform

Although there are several PRM platforms available, there is no comprehensive PRM solution for all partner programs. There are many variations, and every company has its own needs that standard PRM platform features might not be able to satisfy. The following are suggestions for selecting the best PRM platform for your company:

Define your channel program 

Defining your channel program should be the first step in your evaluation process of PRM platforms. Find out who your partners are and what they preference or are comfortable with. Maintaining information and keeping track of expectations and target goals are crucial while working with partners. Your company will have the clearest view of how to proceed with channel partners if the information in the partner relationship management system is kept up to date.

Aspects of the PRM platform’s usability

Employees and partners should have no trouble using the software. Partners should readily find the content on your portal without having to shift through several pages, while sales and marketing should be able to add ideas and update content directly. The top PRM products support mobile access and have user-friendly interfaces for partners and workers.

Choosing a PRM platform is a critical choice that should not be rushed. You should be able to reduce your search to a short list after careful thought and various considerations. Lastly, it is encouraged to spend time using the platform in action through a demonstration. 

Difference between PRM & CRM

PRM and Customer relationship management (CRM) are related in that CRM systems are used by businesses to track the marketing, sales, and customer service phases of customer interactions. PRM, on the other hand, is made to manage a full partner ecosystem. Specialized PRM solutions can also aid selecting partners. Whereas CRM facilitates the relationship between a company and a customer and is considerably more concerned with turning a lead into a client and overseeing that subsequent purchase. The marketing features offered by such systems help businesses locate reliable performance agencies to collaborate with and advertise to the appropriate partners. Companies should place more attention on building relationships with partners because everyone should benefit from the partnership.

Difference between PRM and CRM


The use of PRM platforms mitigates the enormous burden of managing partners, particularly in a world where different partner types and initiatives are constantly being developed. Successful business expansion will depend on managing partner relationships consistently and efficiently. Strong partner programs will enable businesses to identify more entry points into current or potential new markets. In addition to boosting productivity and guaranteeing improved data quality, PRM systems will be crucial in assisting businesses in identifying and interacting with new partners. Using and selecting the PRM platform that is suitable for your business will lead to happier and more satisfied partners as they can provide every customer with the greatest experience possible.


What is Partner Relationship Management 

Guide to Partner Relationship Management System

Benefits of Partner Relationship Management 

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