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INTO: Off-the-shelf IT with a human touch

INTO, since 15 years operational in the field of telecom and IT, works with a unique concept. Its 40 consultants are franchisees. They are trained by INTO, but as they operate their own franchise they are highly motivated to give customers the best advice.

INTO is specialized in selling online workplaces. To best accommodate their customers and being able to serve them fast, they have set up IT packages which can be quickly rolled out. As they originally started with telecom, this is included in the packages as well. It is truly a complete workplace.

Clarinda Dobbelaar is Chief Marketing Officer at INTO and initiator of the Portfolio Board at INTO in which trends and developments are analysed for its relevance for the business. We certainly would like to know more! Let’s hear what she has to say.

Hi Clarinda, thank you for taking time to talk to us. You are Chief Marketing Officer at INTO. Can you introduce INTO to us?

Sure. INTO is a company unique for its human touch in the digital world. The franchise concept helps us in establishing a personal relationship with our customers. In the office around 150 employees work on a daily base to set up the best possible digital workspace packages for Dutch medium and small businesses.

What do you mean by packages?

We compile sets of services and products into full digital workspaces (IT and telecom combined) off-the-shelf packages. We have different packages for all kind of businesses. Working this way enables us to quickly roll out workplaces. For small to medium enterprises the advantage is they now have access to services which are normally out of their league. As we purchase licenses and set up our services for big quantities, we can offer these for affordable prices. Nowhere else will they find this value for money.

Sounds like you have everything standardized..

Well, maybe the packages are, but our approach is certainly not. We have special adoption consultants to help customers configure and adopt their new services and processes. Also we set up online communities in which customers can check questions of other users or follow new trends or updates.

Most of our customers move to the cloud step-by-step: first e-mail, then Sharepoint etc. At every step they are guided by a consultant. Therefore we say we offer the human touch in the digital world.

Ok, so the packages are set up to provide customers quickly with online workplaces. Any other advantages to this approach?

Well, the reason we started selling these packages was to be able to quickly provide our customers with the desired workplaces. In these packages we even include our SLA. All this to save the customer time and enable him to benefit of the digital transformation as soon as possible. Also it allows our employees to focus on serving the customer. For an IT company we have relatively few true technicians. Most of our staff is working with customers.

To follow up on our packages, we also wanted to send our customer just one invoice, even if the packages include services of several providers.

So how did you organize this, to include all these services in one invoice and still be able to scale up quickly?

Keenondots helped us with their platform. They have programmed our packages on their platform, so we can automate the provisioning and billing process. Now, we can prepare packages for our customer and scale up or down on the workplaces as needed. The platform then automatically sets up the invoice for every customer based on actual usage and/or contracted seats.

What is the advantage for INTO to work with Keenondots?

For us it is certainly the flexibility and speed in which we are able to automate the provision of licenses from a variety of vendors on our own contract terms. We didn’t want to be limited to one software provider or the portfolio of a sole distributor. Another advantage is the automation of distribution and control on the accuracy of invoices.

For our customers the advantage is they have a short technical implementation time. Also they receive one single invoice instead of separate invoices per service with different contract terms they otherwise would have to monitor.

Besides being CMO, you also set up the Portfolio Board to follow trends and developments in the IT industry. Can you share some trends?

We see that big companies and start-ups already moved most of their services to the cloud. The mid-market, however, is hybrid as they are a bit reluctant to move everything to the public cloud. We have adapted our cloud journey methodology to this trend. Depending on a company’s situation and potential quick wins, we develop a tailored phased journey to their desired end state. If this means not everything can be migrated to the cloud at once, we have adopted some services to support this. In the future we expect these companies will move to the cloud completely as well, allowing them to completely leverage the continuous stream of innovations.

Any other interesting developments to share?

Yes, we are investigating how to gather data about software usage of our customers on company or team level. Analysing this data will tell us what solutions are being used and which ones aren’t or are declining in usage over time. This allows us to advice and guide customers even better in their adoption process. If we notice a certain service is hardly used we can offer training for this tool. This way, we can help companies to either optimize the use of their services or their package. We are now in the process of developing this. We have enough going at INTO, now and in the future.

That’s obvious. Thank you for this interview.


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