It’s the positive impact on his ability to lead his company that Stephen Stott has found most noticeable since his global search firm upgraded to executive search software from Invenias.
In the five years since its formation, Stott & May has grown to a £30million+ search organisation with offices in London, New York and Reading, the tech hub of the Thames Valley.
With key clients on both sides of the Atlantic, keeping up to speed with the latest information is vital to Stephen’s role as CEO. “Prior to having Invenias on board we really struggled to communicate internally about the different mandates and issues from the US and UK offices,” he says.
When a business operates on a global scale speed of communication is vital to maintain leadership, otherwise different parts of the company could develop different identities. As Stephen recalls: “We were almost operating as different businesses on a similar platform with people importing information but not always getting the same process flow coming out of that information. This led to people using the old system in a way that worked for their profit centre, rather than one process for the good of the business.”
To prevent this from happening, Stephen earned a lot of Air Miles maintaining hands-on leadership of the firm, a burden on his time which Invenias has lifted. “I’ve been able to cut down my trips to the US, in fact, I’m forecasted to spend 40% less time in the US this year compared to last year,” says Stephen.
If this seems like a massive reduction in the boss’s time on the other side of the Atlantic, the ability of Invenias to manage information has made sure that business has not suffered – it has prospered.
“Because of the way Invenias works and the processes behind it, we have actually managed to provide improvements in service to our clients, while maintaining operational efficiency.”
“One thing that has been clear from the management team is that the opportunity for inside sales is far more prevalent than previously – as everybody now has the same information presented in the same way. Our internal sales opportunities are a lot clearer, so as a result we are forecasting an extra 30% growth in cross-selling across our existing client bases in the US and the UK. That has a direct impact on the bottom line.”
To help Stott & May achieve these impressive figures Invenias went beyond pitching a cookie-cutter product. Stott & May went live with Invenias in September 2014 but the process started earlier when, rather than just pitch their product, they thoroughly researched the business to offer a product that is the perfect fit.
It was this attention to detail that made a good impression on Stephen: “I think the key thing is that Invenias actually took time to sit down and try and understand our business. Then they defined the processes and worked through how we could get the best out of the system before delivering it.”
Such in depth research and understanding of how they could aid Stott & May proved to Stephen that Invenias could provide the service that he wanted.
The integration process was made all the smoother thanks to the research that Invenias did prior to going live. As Stephen explains: “We had a number of different meetings with them, not only on a commercial level but also on a technical level with our partners on the IT side. That made a massive difference for us. When the system was delivered, we had users that already knew how to use it and we had ironed out 98% of the problems prior to going live.”
Ultimately, it was this level of commitment which impressed Stephen and his colleagues the most. Rather than simply choosing a product, Invenias got under the skin of Stott & May and helped them achieve their business goals.
“It’s this detailed understanding of what we do and how they can help that means Invenias is not just a square peg in a round hole – it has actually helped us significantly improve our business.”