Michael Wijas, Managing Partner of Quantum Dynamics, has the answer.
“Dynamics 365 is a highly configurable solution with a ton of features. Therefore, innovation in the Dynamics space requires a measured approach to implementation and services. We provide services in a way that’s better, more innovative, and more effective— driving more value than anyone else,” states Wijas.
"We provide services in a way that’s better, more innovative, and more effective driving more value than anyone else"
As a Microsoft Dynamics implementation partner, Quantum’s ability to innovate is driven by the expertise of its strong team. The company’s partners have deep roots with Dynamics, having more than 20 years of experience in working with Dynamics and its precursors. The leadership team has a history of bringing Damgaard Axapta (the precursor of Dynamics 365) to companies in North America, and building one of the first and most successful Axapta firms in the U.S. well before Microsoft’s acquisition of the solution. Fast forward to today, Quantum remains laser-focused on the same path. “Unlike many other System Integrators who spend a large percentage of their time with other solutions, we work exclusively with Microsoft Dynamics,” says Wijas. The company’s partners have a vested interest in the success of every customer, large or small, and they get directly involved with every project. This long-standing commitment to service has helped Quantum build a legacy of their own. It has also resulted in the company developing innovative solutions and implementation practices that no one else in the industry can claim of.
SIMPLIFYING Complex implementations
“Early days of ERP were like the early days of the automobile,” says Wijas. “If you wanted to go on a cross country trip in your car in the early 1900’s, you weren’t really sure if you would get there. The cars weren’t that reliable, nor were the roads,” he adds. However, things have improved over time. In many ways, that’s what happened with enterprise software. In the early days of ERP implementations, there were growing pains and unexpected challenges. Project failures for ERP software implementations were common. There was a lot of learning along the way, in terms of what approaches worked, and what did not; what were the risks, and how those risks could be mitigated. “In the current state, what stands out the most is that the outcome of the software is very predictable, and the risk in implementation is as low as it has ever been if you have the right partner,” says Wijas.
“Historically, there are substantial costs for implementing an ERP System,” says Wijas. Typically, a company would spend a substantial amount on implementation services alone. Looking deeper into the implementation journey, the requirements gathering process is the one that was especially time consuming. For years, the typical implementation effort began with a series of meetings where the consultants ask endless questions like, “tell me about your sales process, or your order entry process, your accounts payable process, and so on.” “Not only did we have to extract that information from the client (often, verbally), but we needed to make sure that we, as consultants, understand it sufficiently well, and finally translate all the business requirements to the actual setup and configuration of the software,” says Wijas. The reality is much of those meetings aren’t necessary. Quantum 365 eliminates these time-consuming meetings through an innovative method.
Developed with the effort of literally thousands of man-hours, Quantum 365 has taken all of the configuration settings for Dynamics 365 and put them in plain English so that a business user reading straightforward questions can understand them regardless of his or her software knowledge. The questions are designed in such a way that that answers in almost every case can either be just “yes” or “no.” Once all the questions are answered, Quantum’s consulting team configures the software based on the question responses. “It is a much more efficient approach than the typical ERP consulting approach,” says Wijas. Quantum can bring up a single site business within the scope of Quantum 365 in weeks. The efficiencies provided by Quantum 365 significantly reduces the professional services and the time required to complete the project. This results in significantly reduced costs and accelerated time to value for the client. “In fact, for customers that completely fit the profile, we’re able to implement Dynamics 365 at zero service cost,” says Wijas.
Quantum 365 provides a way to implement Dynamics 365 in a much more efficient approach, as compared to how ERP and CRM implementations have been done traditionally
This will help companies that have multiple locations eliminate their ‘time-to-implement’ barriers for ERP and operate in a centralized manner. In one instance, a company that had many of its global branches running autonomously, approached Quantum seeking help to implement a centralized business architecture. The client was trying to cater to the local markets while maintaining their national presence. With Quantum 365, the client was able to quickly define their business requirements, with transparency to all of the business units. As the language was in plain English with no technical jargons, the business leaders were able to answer the questionnaire and define their ideal business processes.
Quantum 365 is currently available for Finance and Operations, Sales, and Customer Service applications in the Microsoft Dynamics 365 platform. It will be soon available for other applications, including Business Central, Field Service, and Project Service Automation. Quantum Dynamics plans to continue develop Quantum 365 for use throughout the Microsoft Dynamics 365 solutions.
Of course Wijas understands that every client who wants to change to a Dynamics ecosystem may not be a perfect fit for Quantum 365. “Some may have certain business requirements beyond its capabilities,” says Wijas. In that case, Quantum undertakes the traditional consulting approach where it tailors the services based on clients’ specific needs. The company conducts meetings, workshops, presentations, and discussions to understand the client’s unique requirements. Once they identify the requirements, Quantum guides clients through the Microsoft Dynamics functionality that are relevant to their business. Quantum then fine-tunes the client’s business process, or helps customize the platform using in-house resources. “This will still provide tremendous savings, as we set up the Dynamics infrastructure for our clients in a matter of hours leveraging the cloud,” says Wijas.
Innovation beyond Implementation
Moving ahead with the innovation theme, Quantum is working to bring changes to other aspects of its business. “We endeavour to have long-term relationships with all of our customers for the life of their Dynamics solution and beyond,” says Wijas. As such, Quantum not only wants the implementation effort to be simplified and cost-effective but also wants support processes to deliver the same value.
To achieve this, Quantum provides each support customer with a named support coordinator who manages the support relationship. This person is a U.S.- based resource who becomes intimate with the client’s environment and is therefore well-positioned to provide both proactive support services, as well as reactive services with impressive SLA’s. Support services include root cause analysis and issue monitoring to track the frequency of certain types of issues. The monitoring allows Quantum to then identify patterns. For example, a customer who is continuously logging cases related to a specific area of their system. We can understand whether those are areas where users need additional training, or if it has something to do with the product’s capability, and requires customization. In addition, Quantum is also looking at deeper automation and other emerging technologies, including AI to find ways to make the support experience better. “Because, at the end of the day, our goal is to help businesses function more efficiently using software, and in some cases, process change,” says Wijas. “We believe that software should not be the focus of the conversation, it falls to the background, and in the foreground should be the business,” he adds.
Quantum is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. “In many ways, this marks the next phase in our business,” says Wijas. Having established itself as one of the top Dynamics partners in the U.S., Quantum is now looking at what they can do to be more innovative. In fact, “I believe that ‘innovation’ is our driving principle moving forward,” says Wijas.