There’s a new buyer in town, with the CIO no longer the standard-bearer of IT. As the centre of gravity shifts across the C-suite, non-IT business executives have become empowered to make IT purchasing decisions - spanning sales, marketing, finance, HR and operations. But as outlined by EDGE Research, only 49 per cent of partners in Australia have strong engagement with buyers outside of IT, with half of the channel still chasing traditional dollars. Today, partners must sell specialised solutions beyond the CIO, becoming submerged in sub-sectors, inundating customers with niche expertise and insights. Because for those that don’t, new types of partners are ready to capitalise. This ARN Roundtable, in association with Oracle, highlighted the emergence of a new breed of technology buyer, assessing how partners can engage outside of IT, and the skills required to sell across new business units. Photos by Christine Wong.