Acal BFI

A Pan-European NetSuite Project – Jules Varnham.

AcalBFi is the European leader in advanced technology solutions and operates across Europe, including the UK, Germany, France, Benelux, Italy, Spain and the Nordic regions.

It provides manufacturing, design, engineering, marketing services and custom solutions to the industrial and healthcare sectors and is the only such provider with an infrastructure to deliver a broad complementary range of specialist products and bespoke solutions across Europe.

When AcalBFi needed NetSuite consultancy they were recommended to use Jules Varnham of GoLive Ltd and here Simon Rush, Divisional Sales and Marketing Information Manager explains why they made the right choice in picking her.

“A combination of already knowing of Jules and GoLive and then an agency recommending her as the right consultant to help ACALBFi led to us retaining her for a multi-faceted role really.

“The objectives for us were to reduce the number of CRM systems that we had around our European organisation and to move everyone across to NetSuite; across the European organisation we had 11 different systems in use and we wanted a single system. This meant increasing the number of users from 253 up to its current usage of 363 and to reinvigorate the original users.

“We had merged with another organisation which was BFI hence why we had 11 different systems around the whole of Europe. The role as such, what we needed GoLive to do was work with us to actually look at the functionality we currently use within NetSuite to then adapt that to meet the requirements which changed both culturally and in terms of business style with this merger. 

“So together we customized and developed the usage of NetSuite and we also worked on the training of new users and the instruction of these practices with Jules primarily responsible for the rollout across Europe.

“We met initially with the senior management of each organisation and then, having defined key users or future key users, we then spent time with them to ensure the processes met their requirements. It was a very consultative approach. 

“We also identified Super Users, who were key users within each country.  Their role was to work with us identifying what their team requirements were locally and for them to be the individuals that we used as our communication point with the rest of the organisation. They were trained a little bit further to be able to form basic administrative roles going forward and to assist us in the training of all the other users and smooth rollout. 

“One of the key reasons that we actually went with an individual consultant rather than using other organisations was that Jules was able to work with flexibility across all areas; both the initial consultation process, the customization of the system, the set up and minor scripting that she got involved in, the project planning and the final delivery of the system through to training and then supports functionality after that period. 

“The issue that we found, with other organisations was that they wanted to use multiple people to supply all of those services and through prior experience we found that it was best within our organisation to have one person who understood us from start to finish. And that’s what Jules delivered to us.

“There was a strict deadline that did continue to grow with changes within the organisation, so the initial requirement up front would be that we would not provide huge amounts of customization. As Jules worked with myself and each of the countries we realized that the cultural differences were greater than initially anticipated by the senior group and therefore we actually identified this and it was agreed that additional customization was required. Jules helped us work and develop those customizations.

“She also demonstrated that she can confidently deal with the most junior member of staff through to the most senior member of staff within the organisation. During the training process we did train from the managing director of each of the local countries down to the individuals within the sales teams that were going to be carrying out the operational activities each day. Jules got glowing references from individuals at all levels so much so that we were receiving unsolicited praise outside of the questions that we might have asked and there were emails going to our technical director at group level to say what a great job Jules had done during the training.

“She has helped establish a repeatable process too. This was always something that all of the team were involved in but Jules was keen in the development of this so we ended up with this situation where we now have better management of all the processes that we go through for rollouts. From training and documentation to the management of our scripting activities and all of the documentation that we require in-between, a case support system was being developed which Jules played a part in as well so we’ve improved the overall administrative function that we have by the processes that we put in place. 

“All this has made us more efficient, and when I say more efficient, that the administration of NetSuite as a system, all of the individuals involved, are more efficient because of the work that we’ve done with Jules.

“I’d absolutely recommend Jules. The strongest recommendation that I can give is that we would like to work with her again. Why would we work with her again? I think for all of the reasons that we’ve said within this case study: she is flexible as an individual to work with on all levels within the organisation, she has the ability to understand business processes very quickly and apply them to system processes to achieve the objectives in a timely fashion.” 


Simon Rush
AcalBFi Divisional Sales & Marketing Information Manager (Feb 2014)

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