Meet David Jones, Dynamics CRM Program Manager
Experience: 7 years with Dynamics.
Projects sought: Full-time, long-term.
Other interests: Family-oriented, sports (rugby and tennis).
Take a look at David’s profile and CV on 365 Freelance.
- Sandra from 365 Freelance: David, thanks for taking the time to talk to us. What is your ideal role?
David: My ideal role would be in a corporate enterprise environment with high value implementations. I’m looking for a senior project or program management role with a blue chip type of client who’s looking to make a significant investment into the Dynamics CRM platform.
I’m used to carrying out long-term or short-term assignments in program or senior project management roles and have delivered over twenty five key corporate initiatives, often managing significant budgets and change. Over the course of my career, I’ve successfully managed various team structures: offshore, onshore, matrix, STD or functional models. My experience spans over multiple industries such as financial services, energy/utilities and professional services sectors.
I’m hoping my next assignment wouldn’t just be about technology delivery but also about strategy, change management and stakeholder management in the customer organisation. Although I manage development teams, I wouldn’t just sell myself as a technical resource. I’d expect the kind of role which takes me into contact with fairly senior people on the business side, and where I can be in charge of the whole project life-cycle – including the change management journey.
- Sandra: Throughout your career, you’ve mostly worked for end-users. What are the advantages of working for end-users and how do you find your projects?
David: I’ve always worked on end-user assignments. I’m used to being the person who manages consultancies or brings in contractors and other resources to work on the projects; the person who guides the end-user through the entire life-cycle of the software implementation process. That’s where my experience is. It works for me. It doesn’t mean I couldn’t work for a consultancy, but I enjoy being on the end-user side and that’s probably where I bring the most value.
I usually find my projects through agencies, referrals and word of mouth. I also use my own network.
- Sandra: What are the main challenges you face as a Project Manager?
David: In the context of Dynamics CRM implementations, one of the main challenges is that it usually involves a significant change management aspect in the customer organisation. While technology delivery will always rise to a number of issues that need to be worked through, one of the key aspects of a CRM implementation, in my experience, is about managing that change and pushing user adoption: there’s no point in technology delivery if you’re only getting a limited uptake on the usage of the solution.
In large complicated organisations there are likely to be significant challenges in terms of communication, readiness, change management and adoption. Spending a lot of time on communication about the proposition and therefore encouraging understanding, desire and commitment are absolutely fundamental.
- Sandra: Do you tend to build your own internal delivery teams or do you reach out to the Dynamics partners and coordinate them on behalf of your customers?
David: I use different models. One of the possibilities is to go through a reseller/partner who provides a managed set of commercials.
In a recent assignment, I reached out to a partner to get specific resources. I have also supplemented that kind of approach through various contractors. In my most recent engagement, this arrangement has worked well and my role has been to give the team the day-to-day directions they needed in order to achieve the relevant outcomes and foster the correct ecosystem for successful delivery.
In summary, there are different ways you can resource and set-up an implementation. The choice depends on the circumstances and what you’re trying to do. Clearly it also depends on the end-customer’s risk appetite and on the budget.
- Sandra: What do you think of the 365 Freelance service?
David: It looks like the website is still growing and I think it’s going to continue to get stronger in the future.
The concept is a good one. Many people would be critical of agencies and their lack of transparency. 365 Freelance is a better marketplace which can create a win-win situation for freelancers and clients.
Sandra: Thank you, David! It is great pleasure talking to someone as experienced as you!
About us: 365 Freelance is the first online platform that gives Dynamics partners and end-users instant access to hundreds of contractors. With a network spanning 80 countries, it allows companies to search for freelancers based on their skills, rates and available dates, enabling them to find the best person for their projects without incurring the hefty fees typical of recruitment agencies. Register here – www.365freelance.com.