The company had some recent success in developing a digital “virtual shop assistant” but its major customer was the subject of a takeover bid and all work had been brought to a halt. The company needed to identify new customers, what it was good at, where the revenue streams should come from and how to charge for that work.
The challenge was to separate out the various activities in creating the digital technology and to identify what elements of the service could be marketed to new customers and provide a base level of income for the business. The follow on question was how to go about securing those activities and whether they should be in-house or outsourced.
By analysing the product and service offering together with talking to customers, a strategic roadmap was developed that identified the key revenue streams for the business going forward and the cost of delivering those revenues. A skills map was put in place alongside this roadmap to identify where those skills could be supported in-house and where third party help was required. As part of this process, an assessment was undertaken regarding the processes and procedures required within the business in order to deliver a quality service to customers (for example what accreditation was needed to become a supplier to those customers). On the back of this work, a new commercial contract template was developed that catered for all the various revenue streams and service levels to be provided going forward giving a greater structure to how customers were to be engaged.
The company had hit a “speed bump” in its development and it needed to review the future direction of travel. The early successes had not been backed up by a clear vision of how the company was going to grow and how it wanted to conduct its engagement with current and new customers. By undertaking this review, the Board were able to assess new projects and work against that template with a clear vision of what it should produce and how commercially it was going to earn that revenue.
The result for the company was several new customers replacing the one that was lost and a diversification of the risk by engaging with more recurring income streams and less “one-off” project work.
Case Study: Charles McKay