Arcade is a specialized Microsoft Partner for ERP & CRM implementations. Olivier Laloo, one of Arcade’s Managing Partners, runs the Dynamics 365 Swat-team that takes care of ERP & CRM projects.
Olivier, how would you best describe your expertise?
“I normally explain it as ‘watchguarding’. Just picture the guards watching Buckingham Palace in London. They permanently guard the Queen and her palace. That’s exactly what we do for businesses: we permanently guard the ERP & CRM implementation process. The only difference is that the Queen’s guards don’t move before a problem occurs whereas our SWAT-teams have a preventative role and act long before damage can be done. We do this for both an implementation partner as well as the customer that requires the implementation. We stand between client and partner.” Olivier explains.
How does watchguarding translate into a business environment?
“First of all, we build a relationship based on trust with the client. We are the neutral party that keeps an overview every step of the way. We think along with the client as well as with the implementation partner. We prepare both teams in understanding the “bigger picture” and advise them how to further protect their interests by making sure they have the appropriate strategy, plans and resources to pull it off. This way, we make sure they understand each other. We bring both parties closer together and build bridges (arcades, if you will).”
I’d presume the integration partner could fulfil that role as well, no?
What is main added value of your team?
“The integration partner is extremely skilled and specialized in the technological part of the process. We come in much earlier. Thanks to our experience in a broad range of implementation projects, we are skilled in project management and know we should first go through the requirement gathering. We will take care of the business process design before the integration partner (IT, if you will) comes in. This way, the project’s scope will be clearly defined before the implementation starts.”
Tell us more about your service.
“Mostly, our client is not familiar with Dynamics. Therefore, we will provide first line support and will give a well-informed second opinion if the integration partner had suggested a solution that is not completely in line with the project’s requirements. Our second opinion or alternative suggestion can bring the integration partner and client closer together again. Next to our advisory role, we can unburden the internal teams by taking over some operational tasks as well.”
Does your team play a role in the change management process?
“Absolutely. In our opinion, an implementation is only successful if the new process had been totally accepted and not earlier than when the employees concerned make good use of the software implemented. We are extremely involved and that is why we will, next to raising management awareness about the importance of taking care of the change process, support the client by developing comprehendible training manuals.”
Does a Dynamics 365 implementation project always entail a major change?
“To make sure that the implementation of Dynamics will be successful, we advise – and prefer ourselves – a phased approach. We start off with small and fast implementations and use these starting points as the foundations for the rest of the project. A phased approach has many advantages: not only will the client get effective results in a short period of time, he will also know better what to expect and will be able to make useful adjustments in the next phases, if needed. Also, a step-by-step approach will make the change process easier for key users.
What can clients and integration partners expect when they get your SWAT-team over?
“Our commitment comes along with great flexibility and major efforts to go the extra mile for our clients. We are absolutely output driven and not looking to sell consultancy hours. Both sides can count on our proactive approach. We will actively question actual business and IT processes and will suggest some best practices. And last but not least, as Arcade offers much more than Dynamics 365 implementation projects, we are also ready to provide clients with other in-house services such as Power BI, SharePoint…”