Koepelplein 1E, Haarlem

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Salesforce partner Ebicus specialized in Application Management & Maintenance

Where most Salesforce partners focus on consulting and implementations, Ebicus with offices in Haarlem, deliberately offers broader services. Services that focus on activities after an
implementation: Application management and maintenance. Customers regain the flexibility to be innovative and getting the most value out of their Salesforce application, explain Huub van Rijswijck and Ton van der Meer. Salesforce itself also sees the urgency for these services and introduced the Managed Services Program MSP for Partners in late 2022. Ebicus was the first MSP partner in the Netherlands and the first Salesforce partner allowed to display the new MSP Partner logo.

You can read the original interview of Dutch IT Channel in Dutch here.

From the impressive Koepel in Haarlem, a former prison, Ebicus is making headway. The company, which has existed since 2000, now employs 45 people. Some joined recently, others have been employed for more than 15 years. Besides running Salesforce implementations, Ebicus specializes with clear purpose in the management and maintenance of enterprise CRM solutions.

That started with Siebel, the market leader at the time, says CEO Huub van Rijswijck, who also co founded Ebicus. “By focusing on application management and maintenance, we were able to differentiate ourselves from the well known large consulting companies that did Siebel implementations. We very consciously chose to help customers in the long term and developed a solid complementary service offering around that.”

A lot has happened at Ebicus since then. Siebel was acquired by Oracle and the Ebicus portfolio was enriched first with Pega and five years ago also with Salesforce. But one important thing did not change: application management and maintenance remained the company’s specialty. Even if, in the case of Salesforce, it is a cloud based solution.

Van Rijswijck: “We noticed a growing demand from Salesforce customers for long
term structured application management and maintenance after the initial implementation. Very logical for us with our experienced background to focus on Salesforce as well and yes, we do implementations as Salesforce Consulting partner, but our main focus is on application management and maintenance for the total product portfolio of Salesforce. With maintenance, we focus on implementing innovations, modifications and improvements. That has been our “core business” for 23 years. This in contrast to almost all other Salesforce partners where that balance is exactly opposite. We have a unique and specific approach for our Salesforce customers, helping them get the most out of their Salesforce investment: ‘Customer success, post implementation’. That’s what we’re all about. Salesforce itself talks about Managed Services, only than at application level.”

Salesforce application management and maintenance underestimated

That Ebicus takes its Salesforce MSP activities very seriously is demonstrated by the creation of the Ebicus Managed Services Center for Salesforce, which employs nearly 20 people, as well as their dedicated website salesforcemanagedservices.nl. The hiring of Ton van der Meer this year is also a clear signal. He brings a lot of Salesforce experience. In 2006 he founded CRMWaypoint, which grew into one of the first larger boutique Salesforce partners in the Benelux.

Hoe je de kosten van Salesforce met 20% verlaagd met Managed Services

Van der Meer appears to be on the right place: he believes in Ebicus’ vision. “In the world of Salesforce, application management and maintenance has always been a little bit neglected, because the perception is that it is no longer necessary in the cloud. ‘Salesforce will take care of that’, customers think often. The reality, however, is much different.

Salesforce as a platform has grown so fast and became more complex over time that there is much more effort and focus involved to get the best out of the Salesforce investment after the implementation. “That, he says, requires the right choices and specific skills in a partner.” Cloud has become a business party, but for management and maintenance you need a lot of IT knowledge. Many of our people have done studies like computer science. In that sense, we are a somewhat more a traditional IT company and that is precisely our strength.”

Implementing innovations more efficiently

With its experienced Salesforce team, Ebicus provides tailored services. This can vary from the unburdening of customers by completely managing the Salesforce environment, to providing specific expertise to complement an existing Salesforce maintenance team. For customers, these dedicated services are more than welcome, notes Van Rijswijck.

“You see that Salesforce customers often struggle to get management and maintenance right, in part because Salesforce has become increasingly complex. But we also hear other challenges from Salesforce customers such as cost reduction after an implementation, no fit with the current implementation partner, and problems finding and retaining Salesforce expertise. As a result, customers need more and more time, capacity and budget. It keeps them away or slowing down from using important new modules, releases or extensions. We bring back the balance between sufficient innovations and deployment of maintenance capacity and management costs. Maintenance costs then becomes a healthy twenty percent of the effort again, leaving eighty percent to work on important innovations. This also lowers the TCO, by about twenty percent on average. We give Salesforce customers the flexibility back to keep innovating and take away the pain points mentioned, which they very clearly experience.”

“We always take a multidisciplinary approach to this,” Van Rijswijck continues. “The Salesforce Managed Services team consists of a diverse group of just under 20 professionals: from analyst to architect, from developer to administrator and from configurator to product owner. Together they support a large number of customers. They can help with all Salesforce products, as well as backup management, release management and automatic testing, among other things. If you were to outsource all those different activities to say one freelance consultant, then you really have a challenge. With our team, we can guarantee availability, continuity and a lot of knowledge.” 

“Part of our services and knowledge include, for example, Mulesoft integrations,” he continued. “We have also developed a code scan, which does a health check of the IT environment at 140 points. To embrace the Salesforce Ohana completely, as part of our Managed Services we can also deploy a solution from Whatfix , an ISV partner of Salesforce, to increase the important User Adoption.”

First in the Benelux

Salesforce itself also has an increasing focus on management and maintenance. Van der Meer: Salesforce also realized the challenges often arose after a successful implementation. The solution had to be transferred to the customer’s maintenance organization (if any), but in many situations it was simply not there, or not yet properly set up. For Salesforce, that does present a danger. With a subscription model, you want customers to continue to get the most out of their environment. And a high User Adoption. That’s why they came up with this MSP program last year.”

Ebicus is de Salesforce Managed Services partner van de BeNeLux

Ebicus jumped on the new program immediately. It was the first partner in the Benelux and even one of the first worldwide to be awarded Salesforce MSP partner status in October 2022. Van Rijswijck: “We are allowed to use the new logo and being a Salesforce MSP partner suits exactly what we do, given Ebicus’ history. We are very proud of the unique role we have.” ‘Customer success, post implementation!’


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