It is also looking to roll out SharePoint and OneDrive as the foundation for a more agile and collaborative workforce. Longer term Khoury is interested in the potential of Microsoft Teams and Yammer to address any fragmentation within Hills’ 400-strong workforce to create a more united and cohesive team across the nation.
A major project now underway will also see Hills replace Salesforce with Dynamics 365 which will form both the CRM and ERP foundations for the company.
Khoury says the upgrade is required as the Salesforce system had never been fully utilised or integrated with other applications. Hefty customisation also meant that Hills never benefited from the updates that characterise most SaaS solutions.
The transition to Dynamics 365 alongside effective change management and end user training is expected to deliver far greater benefits as will the tight integration with Dynamics’ ERP functions. Hills will initially deploy the customer engagements functions of Dynamics, for case management, field sales and mass marketing with plans in the future to leverage the tight integration with LinkedIn and Adobe to support its sales and marketing efforts.
Hills is working with Microsoft partner Barhead Solutions to consolidate its ERP platform, replacing four separate ERPs with Dynamics 365. The accounting and supply chain module along with sales, distribution and logistics are to be rolled out first followed by IT help desk and project management functions which Khoury expects will reduce Hills’ reliance on offshore support teams.
Moving to the cloud-based ERP solution will also ensure flexibility and scalability as Hills grows and expands – while at the same time reducing the risk Hills would face from legacy infrastructure and complexity.
Cyber risks are being addressed through the transition to Microsoft 365 and Windows 10, extending to email and web filtering, over a new premium fibre fully managed Telstra network.
Khoury notes that it also positions the business to deal more efficiently with M&A opportunities that arise.
“We have a complete end-to-end business technology stack without having to invest heavily in capex infrastructure. The SaaS model is scalable up and down, it gives us a lot more flexibility and agility and integrated solutions with Microsoft 365 as well as the ERP and CRM of Microsoft Dynamics.
“This will help us fast-track the ‘One Hills, One Outcome’ mission – to be an integrated organisation able to up- and cross-sell a wide range of products and services. A total one-stop-shop in various sectors.
“It is going to make us more agile to better position ourselves for any M&A opportunities and support organic growth whilst taking out complexity and risk,” which is why says Khoury; “This is a partnership with Microsoft.”