Yes, it’s time: What I learned while leaping into the Cloud

Chris Behrens, President and CEO

I always learn something important when I attend a conference. Of course, there’s plenty of new information to be gained when I’m sitting in the audience as a participant. But even when I’m one of the presenters, I always walk away with fresh insights on the topic at hand. Hearing what my fellow panelists have to say, and reading the tone of the room through the topics of the audience’s questions, I find the experience as a presenter to be one that’s often an educational experience in itself.

I was recently honored to be part of the Oracle Modern Finance Experience in New York City, and was interviewed about YA’s journey to the Oracle Cloud in a session moderated by Oracle’s Vice President of Product Marketing ERP, Juergen Linder and Huron Managing Partner Amit Patel.

Since YA recently made the move to an Integrated Cloud Suite, they wanted me to speak to other small- to medium-sized business owners about our success using Oracle’ front to back office cloud applications suite. While it was a kick to chat onstage with Amit and Juergen, it was really very interesting to hear the questions the audience asked at the end of our session. It’s clear that while many businesses know they need to make this move, it’s often a challenge for them to do so.

Moving fast, integrating functions
One of the things I talked about was the importance of understanding when you simply must pull the trigger and move forward. In the case of our medium-sized business, we had undergone so much change and growth as a company that it became a necessity. YA had been using a toolset that was fine for a traditional marketing company, but we’d shifted our vision to operate in a 100 percent digital environment. We had a dated system in a modern environment, and we had to change quickly.

The investment we made in the new system was a “must have” in our current environment, one in which we are now in a leadership position within the promotional marketing space. To retain that position, we had to be able to leverage the Cloud to muscle up our reporting and gain the kind of insights our clients need to makecritical business decisions.

Watch outs
Another thing I learned from session attendees: People are worried. Many of the questions posed to me were about what didn’t work. I was happy to report that we met very few roadblocks on our journey. I credited that to the significant amount of business process mapping that took place internally. Because of that pre-deployment discipline and rigor, we were ready with to adapt to a new way of working right away.

Unlimited scale
Having a single Cloud provider to manage our technology has given us an unlimited ability to scale our promotions without concern. No matter how many millions of people respond and participate in one of our promotions, we are able to scale seamlessly. What might take other agencies weeks to get done, YA can do in a matter of days.

Is this the end of YA’s investment in technology? Absolutely not. If you’re not improving it all the time, you’re moving backward, and we at YA are keenly aware of that. We’re keeping a focus on the leading edge, and we will do what it takes to meet client requirements, not matter how technology continues to transform.

Let’s talk
If you’re interested in hearing more about how YA can help you acquire new customers, retain the ones you have and encourage everyone to spread the word about your brand, please contact me to begin the conversation.

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