Improving business performance with platform consolidation
Creating a holistic customer experience to support upselling and cross-selling of cloud solutions across the full product portfolio
The business case
IRIS Software Group historically operated as a divisional business, with its accounting, education, payroll and HR portfolios managed by different systems and separate marketing teams. As well as organic expansion, IRIS was rapidly growing through acquisition and had ambitions to establish a stronger footprint in English speaking markets overseas, specifically North America and Canada. The legacy divisional structure was identified as a barrier to accelerated and scalable growth, with a project initiated to consolidate operations and drive business change. Central to this consolidation was the company’s technology stack – including Marketing Automation.
The vendor decision
When securing funds for the project, IRIS sought advice from its investors on RDA (Recommended Design Architecture). This recommended Marketo, SFDC, NetSuite, and Kimble for the consolidation of the technology stack.
As a fast-moving business, IRIS set ambitious timescales for the delivery of the end-to-end solution. Leading the consolidation for marketing, Kath Dewar, Marketing Director, quickly identified three challenges that could hinder progress. Firstly, there was an existing stand-alone Marketo Instance. Secondly, while there were Marketo Certified Experts in-house, there was no prior experience of handling major implementations and integrations at speed, or scale. Finally, data was hosted on disparate systems throughout the business.
After demonstrating a quick and nimble approach that aligned with the fast-paced culture of IRIS, BluprintX was appointed Marketo implementation partner for the project. By working at speed, BluprintX enabled marketing to commence the first phase of the project, including requirements capture, SOW and integration architecture within eight weeks, supporting the first consolidation phase which focused on HR products.
Adopting a truly collaborative approach, BluprintX assigned a dedicated project team who embedded themselves into every aspect of the implementation. Working on-site with the IRIS team, BluprintX embraced the opportunity to knowledge-share while problem solving technical challenges throughout the system set up and integration.
The platform consolidation started with Marketo, which used an out-of-the-box SFDC (for sales) integration for speed. From here data was set to flow through to SFDC CPQ (pricing module), on to Kimble, NetSuite and finally SFDC again to facilitate renewals. This integration of six platforms required BluprintX to regularly interface with wider outsourcing partners to ensure smooth progression and maximum efficiency, right through to user acceptance testing.
- Create a holistic customer experience to support upselling and cross selling of cloud solutions across the full product portfolio
- Achieve effective knowledge transfer so that in-house Marketo Certified Experts (MCE’s) would be capable of handling future integrations
- Set up the new Marketo Instance and complete an out of the box SFDC integration
- Migrate the existing Marketo Instance to the consolidated platform
IRIS is undergoing a business transformation that will provide the foundations for scalable growth at pace. BluprintX was instrumental in delivering the first phase which successfully onboarded the HR division and has equipped the IRIS MCE’s with the technical capabilities to handle future integrations in-house.
With BluprintX on board for the project, the existing IRIS team was able to learn by doing. Working alongside the BluprintX team on the Marketo set up processes gave them the opportunity to develop new and transferable skills. These included handling domain and brand set-ups, data uploads and activating domains on the platform.
Equipping IRIS with the tools to go on and self-serve in future, BluprintX provided a series of best practice templates as part of the brief. From campaign build to landing pages, BluprintX fast tracked the time to value with the new platform. Crucially, BluprintX ensured the team could go on to maintain quality standards by providing training on managing the preference centre, which means the team can update these as new products come on board – further supporting the company’s objective of cross-selling to existing customers.
Key metrics included:
- MQL to SQL conversion rate has doubled as a result of improved insights, tracking and analytics
- Over 90% delivery rate across all campaigns
- Opt-out rates managed below 0.2%
“Technical credentials of an implementation partner are pretty much a given. What set BluprintX apart in this project was their agility. There was a strong cultural fit which enabled us to operate as one team. This ultimately secured success, not only in terms of the integrations being delivered on time, but more importantly – our in-house team now being able to support with future integrations.”
Kath Dewar, Marketing Director, IRIS Software Group