THE KIRKMAN COMPANY STORY
Kirkman Company is a management consulting firm ensuring successful transformations of public and private organizations deploying expertise in the areas of New Economy, Procurement & Partnerships, HR & Change, Strategic (Out) sourcing, Customer Excellence and Digital Transformation. They were founded in 2000 by three college friends and have grown rapidly, including several notable spin off companies. Kirkman is B Corp certified, strategic partner of B Lab Europe and thereby part of an international network of organizations that, besides profit, also strive for a high standard for social and ecological impact, accountability and transparency. It was the company philosophy to give their co-workers the professional freedom they need to drive outcomes when working with clients. Granting more responsibility and providing them with the information they need to make decisions – also in the planning and profitability of projects – is very different from many traditional consulting firms. It was this need for enabling Professionals that led them to VOGSY.
Kirkman Company manages on a yearly basis around 100 projects for large corporates with their 75+ consultants. Ivar Davids, Co-founder and Managing Partner, wanted one system that would track all of the moving pieces while having the flexibility to allow their consultants to make many of their own decisions. But at the same time the back-office needed to have guidelines and some basic controls to ensure business integrity and continuity.
“We need to give our team freedom to maneuver, to be on the track to desired outcomes in a changing environment. At the same time, we need to be sure that our clients’ goals are safeguarded and our own governance standards are met,” Ivar Davids explained. “It is similar with our company philosophy. Our people need access to all relevant info so they can make good and informed decisions, but not everyone should have the ability to manipulate the data so we can maintain the integrity of our business.”
THE MOVE TO VOGSY
As the company continued to expand, the need for a single, integrated solution built for collaboration was critical. Thoughts of Google’s Google Workspace came to mind, a tool set and philosophy that Kirkman had already adopted in 2008. “VOGSY was built using the intuitive and social-style Google User Interface. This means we now bring alerts and updates to our Professionals’ personal timeline on any device and wherever they are – so they know when to take action much faster than they used to. And regarding the interface; anyone who can use a social app can use VOGSY. ”
Setting up VOGSY was straightforward, with four simple steps:
- Quick Business Maps to support the main outcomes streams for projects, time entries, expenses, etc. (typically 1-2 days)
- populate VOGSY with customer and employee data (a day with QA)
- Finance mapping to make sure all costs and revenues are allocated (a day or 2)
- Announce and educate; typically one 1-hour session is more than enough to explain – VOGSY is second nature to Google users
WHY VOGSY | SETTING UP FOR FUTURE GROWTH
“What we introduced with VOGSY is an entirely new approach for owners and executives of PSO’s towards managing their businesses for growth.
VOGSY is unique in that it has been designed for the new generation of Professional Services companies who are predominantly mobile, need real-time information and collaboration to make decisions for their clients while transforming the back end of the business,” said Mark van Leeuwen, CEO of VOGSY.
“VOGSY provides all functionality that goes into running the entire ‘Quote-to-Cash’ process. However, unlike existing products, we ventured from the notion that we need to put the Professional at the center of technology.
For that reason, VOGSY acts as a Single Source of Engagement for all Service Professionals, giving instant insight and access to all data, documentation, and decisions required to drive the desired outcomes for their clients and for their own business.”
This was exactly what Ivar Davids and Kirkman Company was looking for.
According to Ivar Davids, Co-founder and Managing Partner, “For our business we are now seeing maximum self-awareness resulting in:
- Elimination of reporting and waiting on reports
- Shorter throughput times
- Ownership of project outcomes
According to Ivar Davids, “We are now using VOGSY as a real-time all-round business tool to run our company and provide everyone immediate access to business insights. So apart from running our projects and managing our resources, invoicing, etc., we also have a lot more visibility with a lot less hassle. Because everyone can see everything they need in one place there is no longer a monthly report to wait for, much less strain on our admin activity and our employees are keeping their data accurate. After all; they get a lot in return – most importantly, making decisions on a daily basis instead of waiting for the backoffice to provide them with the accurate data. When given the proper tools and support, people definitely want to be accountable, we can see that working extremely well.”
Ivar Davids continued, “At Kirkman Company there is now maximum self-awareness, no more reporting (or waiting on reports), shorter throughput times and more ownership of the most important job that we all do and that is driving successful outcomes for our customers.”
With VOGSY in place to support the business, Kirkman Company is confident that they can meet their growth objectives while maintaining their B Corp focus and commitment on a high standard for social and ecological impact, accountability and transparency.
This is a true partnership between a socially responsible company and a company who developed a solution that fits both their needs and philosophy.