Getting to Bronze
Those of you that know the history of UP3 will know that Matt & I formed the company at the beginning of 2016 after working together at TeamUltra for 5 years.
It wasn’t easy to step out on our own and we really did start from scratch with our own money, our experience, and an unwavering belief in the platform we had worked with for so long. On day 1 we had no customers and no staff but we knew that there was a massive opportunity to build a business in the UK around ServiceNow provided we could establish ourselves quickly and differentiate ourselves sufficiently.
We began in earnest in March 2016. We registered as a ServiceNow Sales and Services partner and set about trying to find a customer. We set ourselves the target of rising up out of Registered partner status and into Bronze within our first year.
After the initial euphoria of getting started we experienced some dark days as the enormity of what we had taken on occasionally crashed in on us – we reached out to our respective networks to let them know what we were doing and had lunch and coffee with as many people as we could. One of those lunches; led to our first piece of work.
ServiceNow were short of Engagement Managers and needed someone to run a QuickStart implementation for a new customer. QuickStart implementations take the base out of the box ServiceNow product for IT Service Management and over a period of 10-12 weeks run the customer through the process of defining their requirements for Incident, Problem, Change, CMDB and Request then standing up the instance, configuring the requirements, loading the data and getting them live and operational. It wasn’t something that they would normally ask a partner to do but given our relationships and experience we were considered a safe pair of hands and ServiceNow offered any support that we might need to get the job done. In all our discussions with ServiceNow prior to this point they had always been incredibly supportive of us setting up a new dedicated partner business but this was the real lifeline that we needed and we grabbed it. It was to be the catalyst for everything that followed.
Because of that implementation we established a great working relationship with a customer that was looking to use ServiceNow to support request processes across business IT. We helped them to develop a roadmap for ServiceNow which we then delivered together. We were now in a position to hire technical staff and think about growing. Two more QuickStarts followed and each time, with ServiceNow’s full support, we retained the customer and helped them to define and deliver against their roadmap. One of those customers in particular represented a perfect fit for UP3 – they had the vision and the determination to position ServiceNow at the heart of their business operations with a multi-year roadmap extending way beyond IT. They understood what it would take to do this but also the huge benefits they would realise from modernising their applications and processes. They were exactly the reason we had gone into business and started UP3 in the first place.
By the beginning of 2017, coming into our fourth quarter, we had far surpassed our first year forecast as well as the number of deployments and CSAT scores that we needed to achieve the coveted Bronzed partner status. All we needed to do was go back to school and sit our exams. A few of our team had been working with ServiceNow since before the days of Certified System Administrator and Implementation Specialist but we needed the certifications to qualify. We dug out our certificates, we did our homework and we sat the exams, we achieved the requisite product competencies and in April 2017 we were awarded with our Bronze Services Partner status.
Despite being competitive people – Bronze felt pretty damn good and we are now well on our way to Silver!