First, Solve the Customer’s Problems, and the Rest Will Follow

Randy McCabe May 31, 2014 Nonprofits


We are pleased to welcome guest blogger Peter Wagner from AcctTwo Shared Services, LLC, based in Houston, Texas. You may visit the AcctTwo website at: www.accttwo.com.

Who could say it better than Orange Leap’s CTO himself? Leo D’Angelo made a compelling case back in 2007 that couldn’t be more true today – solve your customers problems first, and your business strategy will follow. Some companies build technology solutions for the lowest common denominator, package them together in a one-size-fits-all suite of software, and then force organizations to swallow the whole shebang – potentially expecting them to install, host, and support it on their own servers. That is not solving the customer’s problems first. That’s trying to solve as many customers’ problems as possible with one solution. It’s a land grab – trying to own all of the processes and all of the solutions, and it only creates new pain points for organizations that are trying to use technology to solve problems, streamline processes, and find the best targeted solutions available.

The King of the World is really just a Jack of All Trades (Master of None)

Enter the “best-in-class” or “best-of-breed” or “loosely coupled”, integrated ecosystem of solutions. Whatever you want to call it, this approach allows companies and organizations to pick and choose from a host of cloud-based software solutions that target either their specific industry or organizational structure or basic business approach. What works for non-profits may not work as well for manufacturers, and what works well for manufacturers may not be the best fit for professional services organizations. These providers have given up dreams of being King of the World so they can be Master of their Domain, and more importantly they can be indispensable to their customers. Their solutions use APIs to openly integrate and share data with other best-in-class solutions, whether they be financials, CRM, document management, or donor management systems. They’ve asked the customer, “What problems do you need to solve?” And they’ve solved the problems they can – better than any other provider ever could, while leaving the door (and their APIs) open for the customer to go out and find other best-in-class providers to solve the rest of their problems.

Cooperation, Not Competition

This is the new world – a world where we put the customer first. It’s true in how we solve problems and even how we sell those solutions. The job of every software publisher, reseller, and implementation consultant today is to provide customers with all the information they need to succeed in their industry and pick the best solutions possible. Instead of competing, we’re cooperating. Instead of trying to own the world, we’re striving to make our corner of it as good as it can be, while remaining open to cooperate with others to actually help our customers and clients.

This is precisely what drew us at AcctTwo Shared Services to partner with Intacct as a reseller and implementation consultant for their best-in-class financial management software, and to use Intacct as the foundation for our accounting process outsourcing services. And as we’ve become more heavily involved in the non-profit and faith-based sectors, we couldn’t miss Orange Leap’s contribution as a best-in-class provider of donor management solutions, seamlessly integrating with Intacct in the spirit of this new world of software ecosystems. At every stage of the donor life cycle, whether it be acquisition, conversion, retention, reactivation or cultivation, Orange Leap helps clients capture the heart of their donors.

We very much look forward to helping more and more non-profit and faith-based finance departments automate their processes, streamline their workflows, and focus on their organization’s mission, rather than being mired down in outdated legacy systems or trying to force an all-in-one enterprise software solution designed for a different industry entirely. And we look forward to partnering with Orange Leap to solve our clients’ problems first and provide them with the best solutions. Because at the end of the day, that is what really matters.

AcctTwo is a leading consulting firm and reseller of cloud-based accounting and financial management software