Understanding our clients digital readiness is key to delivering successful products

Friso van Emst
Publication Date
2 September 2022

Understanding our clients digital readiness is key to delivering successful products

Friso joined Mobiquity over five years ago. He talks about his role in leading the Delivery team and establishing a distributed delivery model to continue to have an impact in this fast changing environment. He also shares the importance of recognising clients digital readiness and maturity, and that in order to be successful, you need to build and nurture a continuous innovation mindset.

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Friso van Emst: I am forty eight years old and live on the Veluwe area, forty five minutes east of Amsterdam, together with my wife and three small kids. I have more hobbies and interests than I can handle. Any spare time I have goes to the family and doing activities together. I also work a bit on a very old land rover, trying to keep it running. For holidays I enjoy going with my family to the mountains, away from cities, to the quiet basic living environment of a hut in the middle of nature. It’s great to disconnect, recharge and instead connect with yourself and what nature has to offer.

I have been active in the IT industry for over twenty five years, and have witnessed and been a part of the evolution of IT and digital technologies. Before joining Mobiquity, I have had quite a broad range of experiences in many different types of companies, from startups to a large telecommunications company. Working in many different countries and cultures, such as the Middle East and Western Europe, mainly within roles in business development, program management and consulting. I thrive working in continuously changing environments that bring a constant array of new challenges. It keeps me energised to always look at how we can do things faster and smarter. I have worked on both sides of the supply and demand chain, which is very valuable experience for the role I have today. Understanding the perspective and needs of both sides enables a better connection with the client and in turn helps to create meaningful and long lasting relationships.


Having an impact in a fast changing environment

From the onset Mobiquity has been and continues to be a vibrant and energetic work environment. It really comes down to the people I work with. There is a great level of autonomy among everyone and having so much expertise in the company, who have a shared way of working, supports that entrepreneurial, proactive, high growth atmosphere that I love. One of my favourite philosophers said “You only really exist in relationship to others”. If you take that as a truth it's immensely important who you work with, as they define in a large part who you will become. It’s about having an impact. Everything is changing so fast. To be able to deliver a product at speed is just as important as its reach and the value it brings to our clients and their customers. I believe that in digital any project must deliver value in the next quarter, or else it’s chances to fail increases dramatically. You have to get into the market fast and then start developing, optimising and improving your offering. And that’s a continuous process. If you can establish and cultivate a great company culture, like Mobiquity, where everyone is open and motivated to both coach and learn from one another, it’s extremely beneficial. It acts as an accelerator for personal, professional and company growth. A lot of clients love Mobiquity because of our mentality, our way of operating and the working environment that we have created and are so proud of.

Establishing a distributed delivery model

Being responsible for Delivery, my role focuses on delivering value to our clients within EMEA and APAC by building great new digital products and experiences, which includes making sure we have sufficient delivery capacity in our ever growing, diverse and geographically distributed workforce. It’s a continuous process. When I first joined we had sixty to seventy people working in the Amsterdam office. We are now close to three hundred people, including great new colleagues working from our hubs in Australia, South Africa, the UK and working with many more partners worldwide. While growing fast and having many changing variables, we need to make decisions on how to set up our delivery teams in the most successful way for each project we deliver. And how I do that is to connect as much as possible with my team, to truly understand what they need in order to succeed. As we continue to grow fast, it's inevitable that we will not always be as organised as we would ideally like to be. It's a consequence of being a fast growing company. That’s why we put a lot of effort in our hiring and onboarding process, to ensure we have the right profile type to excel in this type of environment.


Knowing our clients' customers

When it comes to helping our clients, it is critical to recognise their digital readiness and maturity. As that enables us to connect properly with the client, even down to using the right vocabulary to make them feel comfortable and truly letting them know that we get what stage they are at and understand what it is they are trying to achieve. And although at Mobiquity we are spearheading innovation, working with the latest technologies in an efficient way, it doesn't necessarily mean that our client is also at that same point. The risk is that we come in with an excellent proposal for the client, but then have to take two steps back to help and guide the client to get to that level of their digital revolution. This understanding of their digital readiness and maturity, combined with a proper grasp of the clients north star is key. That fundamental metric that is most significant for the client in the short term. Having that discussion with clients continuously and proactively supporting the client with this at a business level, is critical to building successful relationships. It greatly supports giving purpose to our people in any role they have and in any stage of the delivery. By knowing our clients' customers, we can better understand the why and for who we are building a product. And only then can we advise our client in the best way and ultimately produce the best digital product.

The importance of continuous innovation

Companies that are successful in their digital transformation and are reinventing themselves for the next decade also understand the need for industrialising the innovation process. This understanding is at the core of our Digital Traction Model, our way of working. It's just as important to feed the innovation machine continuously with new ideas as it is to pivot to the best product. And we have a couple of great examples of this with clients we are working with. It’s all about continuous validation of the digital product with our clients’ customers, preferably from the onset. That's not something revolutionary, but putting this into practice in real life is something different. While financial control and decision making in the innovation process is key to creating real value to our customer’s business, there’s also a huge risk of losing momentum due to the same decision-making processes. It’s a delicate balance. And these are just some of the many factors that can slow down innovation. It’s great to be able to help our clients take away blockers and maintain traction, especially at those moments where there is a risk of losing traction. But also to keep people happy and engaged, because only happy people can create great products. I really am convinced of that. Only those who can fully put their own skills, expertise and views into a product for the client are able to build the most successful products.

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