Could you describe the scope of the project in terms of components: did it include custom development, design, training, support, etc.?
It really revolved around marketing automation and optimization, complemented by analytics and reporting. We purchased several modules from SAS in the end and Crystalloids helped us with the actual installation.
Why did you select SAS over some of its counterparts?
In the end, it was a close race between IBM and SAS. There was little difference between both vendors but we had a big user-base on SAS already. IBM was also significantly more expensive than SAS, so that only served to reinforce my decision to go with SAS.
How did you select Crystalloids as your solution provider?
At first we were collaborating with a firm operating out of Belgium. We were dissatisfied with their operational execution and overall project management. We then began to search for a partner in the Netherlands. SAS recommended Accenture, and we simultaneously were introduced to Crystalloids. We interviewed both parties, but I rather preferred Crystalloid, because they adopt a lean and mean, hands-on approach. They also had extensive experiences with implementing SAS in the Netherlands. They possess strategic and operational competence, which was essential for us. And the people I know have had nothing but great experiences working with Crystalloids.
What parts of the project did you contribute to with your in-house expertise, if any?
That’s a very good question because when we started the project with our Belgian partner, we had little time to help the project and they only sent one person who could help. It was far too little. Crystalloids was able to allocate a number of resources to us and their consultants were had deep knowledge and expertise. It was the difference between day and night.
Could you give me a sense of the size of this project in monetary terms?
I had 3 million Euros to spend last year. Part of that was used for the implementation of marketing automation. We combined marketing automation with optimization so it was one project with two separate components.
When were each of these modules completed?
The two components were completed in April of this year after approximately seven months. We’re now in the process of configuring campaigns and deploying them, which is a whole other beast.