A drive for new technology
Unfortunately, the new name didn’t come with a technology upgrade. While the group grew in the 2000s, it was clear that their legacy systems would eventually hold them back. Finally, the ‘where to from here?’ decision became pressing.
“We’d reached end of life with the systems we had,” says Sean Chen, IT Manager for n3. “We had to decide if we should invest in newer versions of our existing technology or start afresh. We made a strategic decision to adopt Microsoft throughout the business so we could better support and grow our customer base, supplier partnerships, and the business itself.”
n3 went to market in 2015 to choose the partner who could completely overhaul and upgrade their systems from the ground up. They decided on Fusion5 to implement a solution based off Dynamics 365 CRM, Microsoft Power Platform, ClickDimensions (integrated directly to the CRM), and to move the business to Azure.
The out with the old, in with the new project commenced in March 2016 and has been deployed in incremental phases right through late 2018.
Cloud-struck and happy
Chen, and Jeremy Howcroft, CEO of n3, both say the move to Azure has had a significant impact on the business, and that their new Microsoft environment delivers the value they expected.
“We’re now at the stage where we’re realising a lot of the benefits from the new technology, and learning a lot too,” says Howcroft. “Our old platform didn’t have an upgrade path. By comparison, Microsoft has a constant upgrade approach, and they put changes through every day, so we’re always up to date.
n3 now use Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement to record customer information, track services used by customers, and capture details of potential new members. The n3 sales team use the CRM’s prospecting features to track and nurture leads. The marketing team utilise ClickDimensions’ email automation functionality to keep in contact with, and provide offers to, prospects and customers.
“Dynamics 365 is our first cloud-based system,” says Chen, “and it’s opened up a whole new world to us. We no longer have to host the platform or maintain the services. We can put it all into Microsoft’s hands and just focus on running the business. The challenge for us is how to adapt to the changes and make the most of the opportunities it offers us – and that’s where Fusion5 continue to add value.”