Reseller News

How Lancom leveraged Dynamics 365 to scale up HRV

CRM represents core component of the company, spanning more than 600 users
HRV headquarters in Auckland

HRV headquarters in Auckland

HRV has removed the need for large-scale upgrade projects following the deployment of Microsoft Dynamics 365 through Lancom Technology.

The roll-out centred on HRV’s customer relationship management (CRM) offering, representing a core component of the company with up to 90 per cent of staff accessing the software, spanning more than 600 users.

Specifically, the work involved retaining custom functionality while upgrading connections to the “dozen or so” third-party integrations that currently support the business.

In leveraging the expertise of Lancom, the project involved one terabyte of data, 1.7 million contacts and 1.5 million properties.

“We now have a scalable platform which will provide us greater speed to market,” said Jeff Hart, director of strategy and data at HRV, when speaking to Reseller News.

According to Hart, the upgrade provides the business with "immediate access" to new features upon release, eliminating clunky refresh cycles in the process.

“Like many other businesses we need greater data support and tools,” Hart added. “We are on a journey to automate business processes and meet the needs of our evolving business models.

“The business is demanding more insight and information at their fingertips and greater efficiencies in their processes. We needed a modern platform to grow and deliver to the changing needs of the business.”

Operating as part of the Eco Products Group - part of the wider Vector Group - HRV is a New Zealand-business specialising the creation of healthy homes through ventilation, water filtration, heating and cooling and solar.

Headquartered in Penrose, Auckland, the company also owns the EES brand, which focuses on energy efficient homes, with deep expertise in heat pumps and ducted heating systems.

“The project involved Lancom delivering Dynamics 365 on-premise, taking us through four versions on the way there,” Hart explained. “Lancom is currently working on phase two of the project to migrate our business to Dynamics 365 online.

“We will look to undertake a third phase to analyse and implement additional new modules that can be accessed from being in the cloud, such as field services and project automation.”

Business benefits

Hart said the HRV business has “grown significantly” during the past seven years, since the specialist firm first introduced Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

“Our customer base has more than doubled, we have significantly diversified our product range and acquired several businesses as part of our growth,” Hart added.

“We also launched more sophisticated marketing programs and channels to market and matured our focus on data as a key asset to driving business insight and customer experience.”

But for Hart, such a process was being slowed down by an ageing version of CRM that was “limiting” the company’s ability to innovate.

“The older technology meant we had limited integration with innovation in technology and we had limited development partners to work with,” Hart said.

In leveraging the expertise of Lancom, HRV tapped into a partnership that spans more than 15 years in New Zealand.

“Lancom has seen our transformation over this time, they know our business, our users and the unique challenges we face,” Hart added. “This experience is hard to replicate.

“We have a strong level of trust in Lancom and we have seen the proof of their delivery over a number of projects.”

Specific to CRM, Lancom has been developing, managing and consulting on HRV CRM since 2013.

“Our key role in the migration was to firstly work with the key stakeholders within the business to establish a success criteria,” explained Waruna Kirimetiyawa, general manager of Lancom Technology.

After establishing a framework, Lancom then carried out the migration of core CRM components from Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 to Dynamics 365, while redeveloping HRV’s supporting applications to work with the latest version of the solution.

“HRV’s CRM is at the epicentre of their business,” Kirimetiyawa added. “This sequences all their staff in their work from outbound campaigns, phone system integrations, mobile sales applications, commissions, data warehousing, reporting as well as data import platforms all written and managed by Lancom.

“HRV currently has one of the best CRM databases in the country with over 1.4 million contacts and over one million properties. All these records are worked with at least every 90 days so the data is clean and accurate.”

With deep specialisation in Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and Citrix technologies, Lancom operates as a cloud-first managed service provider in New Zealand, backed up by custom software development capabilities.
“Lancom has been in the market for 30 years and we provide software development and managed services around the world,” Kirimetiyawa said.

Since 1995, the Auckland-based provider has been a Microsoft gold partner in the local market, alongside the recent addition of advanced consulting status with AWS.

“Our expertise lies in software development from bespoke software, software-as-a-service (SaaS), Dynamics CRM, mobile apps, middleware, business intelligence and managed services for small, medium to large corporates in Australasia," Kirimetiyawa added.

With application development, migration, DevOps and consulting expertise, Lancom counts Attwoods, Ezi Car Rental and Mondiale as customers, alongside HRV, Total Admin and Salt.

“Our core focus is to create leverage with software for our customer base,” Kirimetiyawa added. “We begin not with technology but with the desired business outcome and match technology to achieve leverage for our customers.

“We begin with the customer and work backwards from there. In the absence of the right product being available to achieve the business outcome needed we have the ability to create this leverage by creating our own software which is very unique to an MSP.

“This is backed by 30 years of experience and success globally in the market.”