SalesTech Star Interview with Jim Caro, SVP of Sales at SIOS Technology
Tell us about your journey into technology Sales and how did you arrive at SIOS Technology?
My beginnings in technology Sales began back in 1986 with The Computer Factory Inc. in Boston, MA. Right out of college, I was put through the IBM Sale Training program within The Computer Factory and this is where I was introduced to selling into enterprise accounts. From this effort, I spent the next six years progressing into Sales Management within the Corporate Sales team. From here, I continued my efforts for the next six years building national sales organizations within CIC Systems, Compucom, PCConnection and GovConnection.
From the reseller world I made the strategic decision to take my skills into the start-up world with technology vendors that develop solutions on the leading edge. These were typically well-funded companies that now needed to bring their solutions to market.
Starting with Giganet (later acquired by Emulex) we worked on bringing a leading edge (almost bleeding edge) storage-based data transport solution to market, and changing the vision on how data storage transport worked long into the future with the first commercially available iSCSI solution. Developing successful Sales and Business Development strategies designed to take these new companies and products to market became a mainstay in my career progression, working with companies like Network Engines, FilesX, Inc., ROI, Inc., Acronis, and Unitrends.
In all cases these products have been focused on infrastructure solutions for Storage, Storage Networking, Backup solution, Data Security and Data Analytics. My most recent mission was targeted at a more traditional large corporation, Hewlett Packard Enterprise for their Storage Division working to re-grow their Northeast Region back into the leading Region for the company. The challenges of creating and developing distinct strategies and power Business Development and Sales efforts has prepared me to lead SIOS Technology into the next generation of growth.
What is SIOS Technology and how do you differentiate your solution from other High Availability and Disaster recovery solutions for critical applications?
SIOS Technology is a leading provider of software solutions that provides the tools that IT managers need to manage and protect business-critical applications in large, complex data centers and distributed cloud environments. SIOS SAN and SANLess software is an essential part of any cluster solution that provides the flexibility to build Clusters Your Way™ to protect your choice of Windows or Linux environment in any configuration (or combination) of physical, virtual and cloud (public, private, and hybrid) without sacrificing performance or availability.
How is providing customer service for enterprise B2B technology products different compared to other technologies, for instance IT SaaS and Cloud?
SIOS Technology delivers a software solution that is designed to help our customers work more effectively with both on-premises, virtual and large cloud providers. With a solution that SIOS delivers we have to be prepared to assist customers and partners across multiple applications, platforms and cloud environments, all within a single instance of SIOS.
SIOS’ support team has to be aware of all aspects of the implementation so that we can be prepared to address the needs of a customer as they prepare to support mission critical applications that are moving to a cloud/off-premises environment. SIOS support has to be far more flexible and knowledgeable about the customer’s overall IT and application ecosystem.
What is SIOS Technology’s Sales culture and why is it important to build a Sales-focused culture for any business?
The culture we are building within our Sales team is one of investigation and customer understanding. Know your customer and their needs well, before we begin to present the SIOS solutions. Know your partner/reseller and their target requirements well before we just start throwing random facts at them about the SIOS Technology solutions. Each time we work to engage a customer, partner or prospect make sure that you are prepared to have a detailed discussion about their business, cloud focus, database requirements and business continuance requirements.
Tell us how you achieve Marketing-Sales alignment.
Alignment with Marketing is in ongoing effort. Marketing and Sales must work hand-in-hand to ensure that Sales creates market growth, customer expansion and partner development. Sales must be willing to provide relevant information, feedback and updates to marketing on a regular basis, and Marketing should provide a proactive view into near-term campaigns and programs. We include the Marketing team on Sales calls and the Sales team meets with Marketing on a regular basis throughout each week. All programs are developed cooperatively between Marketing and Sales.
Which SalesTech Automation and tools do you use? How do they make your work easy?
We currently utilize Salesforce for our CRM/SRM, Leadlander as our in-bound lead tracking tool, Discover.org and Linkedin as our lead investigation and account insight tools, and Marketo for lead and opportunity development and tracking. Utilization of these tools allows us far more control over the Sales process/engagement and opportunity development, while providing management more insight into the progress of the opportunity. Visibility is critical.
What advice would you offer to other Sales professionals in the B2B tech industry?
The key with all technology Sales is to be focused on selling a solution not a point product. Understand why the customer is speaking with you and more importantly understand where your solution can alleviate pain, frustration and cost from their business.
Don’t just present solutions, rather focus on a customer discussion and consultation effort. Only after you have these discussions can you truly present any level of a solution to the customer. Understand the customer’s needs and requirements, then orchestrate your solution to help fit those needs.
Thank You, Jim, for answering all our questions. We hope to see you again, soon.
SIOS Technology Corp. makes software products that provide the insights and guidance IT managers need to manage and protect business-critical applications in large, complex data centers. SIOS iQ is a machine learning analytics software that helps IT managers optimize performance, efficiency, reliability, and capacity utilization in virtualized environments.
SIOS SAN and SANLess software is an essential part of any cluster solution that provides the flexibility to build Clusters Your Way™ to protect your choice of Windows or Linux environment in any configuration (or a combination) of physical, virtual and cloud (public, private, and hybrid) without sacrificing performance or availability.
Jim Caro leads SIOS Technology Corp. Sales and Business development activities Worldwide. His career spans more than 26 years and includes designing, building and driving revenue through direct and indirect sales channels, value-added resellers, global system integrators, first and second-tier distributors and strategic ISV partners. He has held senior-level Sales and Business Development positions with a wide range of companies including Giganet, Emulex, FilesX (acquired by IBM), Acronis, Unitrends and ROI, Inc.
Most recently, he served as the Storage Sales Lead New England sales, at Hewlett Packard Enterprise where he managed revenue attainment for Fortune 500 enterprise accounts, Healthcare Institutions and Public Sector Accounts. Jim holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Boston College, Carroll School of Management and a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing & Finance from the Roger Williams University.