The right time for "An Integrated Business"
Why "An Integrated Business" now?
A good friend of mine said, how did you wake up one morning and decide to start a consulting business during the pandemic?
It started with my exploration, looking for the next career opportunity that would follow my passion. I reached out to a good friend and the CFO at an IBM Partner I had worked for previously. His sage advice was, the best career choice is to control your destiny.
I started taking different online courses and even entertained the idea of creating a business around baking cookies. Is there a way to bake cookies, make it easy to deliver warm, and create something new? I experimented with several cookie recipes, and as my waist expanded a few inches, I realized I loved cookies, but it was not my passion.
As the pandemic hit, it reminded me of the beginning of my career, when the Savings and Loan crisis hit in the ’80s. Just out of college, in the late ‘80s, I was a new IBM marketing rep, quickly learning how integrated solutions helped my customers, mostly building and home contractors, respond to those challenging times successfully. By integrating their business information, companies could respond to the crisis’s challenges and opportunities, survive, and many thrive.
I started talking to Jeff Sinason, now our CTO, and realized I do have a passion for technology. Not the glitz and glamour of artificial intelligence, virtual reality, or even machine learning but for good old fashioned integration and infrastructure technologies that enable businesses of all sizes to become more efficient and effective. It also helped to be reminded that the newer technologies needed to integrate with the various business applications already in place to be truly innovative.
Jeff and I started discussing how we could help clients in these challenging times, and if we started our own consulting company, how would we stand out from other consulting companies. We also brought in another good friend and a colleague JR Nelson, our sales and business development VP.
We agreed to a few principles that would be different from other similar companies in the market:
1) We will be business-focused, not technology-driven, delivering agile integration solutions that deliver business value. Many technology consultants implement solutions focused on the technology and support of their clients’ IT strategy but do not clearly understand how it drives their clients’ business value. We will keep the focus on the business value and use case for the solutions and services we recommend.
2) We will focus on use cases and deliver solutions as projects at a fixed price. Too many consultants are focused on billable hours, which means they are always looking for additional requirements to extend the contract to the client, which is good for the consultant and their employer. The client’s challenge is that it also extends the time it will take to realize real value from their solution and services. We want to ensure that our clients see us as looking to deliver timely value based on an agreed to use case, project time-line, and cost.
3) We want our clients to become self-sufficient with the solution we provide. Simply put, we want to include training at each step of our relationship for the business and IT Teams. The business can't help drive business requirements if they do not understand what integration can do and how timely it can deliver business value to the company. And, IT can't meet those requirements without sufficient training in the chosen integration solution. Providing training and a tailored operating guide helps assure clients are self-sufficient when we complete the integration project.
4) We will operate ethically, with trust and transparency. Our customers will know what to expect from us, their commitments to the project's success, and all financial and contractual agreements are clear. This commitment extends to all relationships, including consultants, partners, and vendors. The three of us are committed to run our company ethically and trustworthy.
Timing helps as well; the latest integration solutions are agile and support agile development methodologies. They incorporate visual tools, such as data mapping, which can be understood by business and IT professionals alike. They support smaller deployments making it easier to deploy in the cloud or on-premise.
We are committed to leveraging our experience to help companies respond to these challenging times by becoming an integrated business enabling an integrated view across their business. Integration solutions can help break down organizational barriers allowing them to be more flexible and responsive to opportunities and challenges.
Want to know more about what makes us unique? You can review JR Nelson's Introducing An Integrated Business video on our youtube channel.
So, I invite you to follow us on our blogs, youtube channel, website, and social pages, and if you are interested in talking about your integration and business requirements, please let us know.