The History of EntryPoint
Letter from the Founder
In 2002, Nick Canitano, EntryPoint's former Managing Partner, and I were both coming off professional successes and thinking about what was next. Nick had built a regional consulting powerhouse named CCAi Consulting. I was ready for something new after years of consulting.
The marketplace was changing. Everything was moving faster and faster. Finishing projects on time and under budget was still important, but it didn’t give a consulting firm competitive advantage anymore. Neither did technological sophistication. Everybody had those; they were table stakes.
We thought we might want to build a firm together, but we agreed that we didn't want to do it the same old way as everyone else. Far too many clients out there were unhappy with the results of their projects. We wanted a firm that would offer "SAP the Right Way." We started with a clean whiteboard and set out to design a firm that would work for our clients, for our associates, and for us. We knew that we wanted to do interesting projects that delivered solid business results with the kind of people we wanted to work with, and we knew there was a better way to do it.
The next step was to confirm our thoughts and research what we believed "The Right Way" meant for clients. So, we spent six months or so talking with business people, CEOs and CFOs and the like, from all over. We asked them what they wanted. Most had tough things to say about consultants. To put it bluntly, many of them felt like they'd been screwed by consultants. They thought they'd paid a bunch of money for projects that sucked up time and energy but didn't deliver the expected business results.
Through our analysis and these interviews we had confirmed the key issues causing these negative perceptions and results; and we now knew there was a better way to provide these services.
We could do better.
We decided that small-mid-market companies were the best for us to work with. We knew from experience that these companies make great clients. They're action oriented and results focused ... just the kind of people we knew would appreciate us and that we love to work with. Small-mid-market companies aren't awash in money, either. That makes them much more disciplined about decision-making and execution. We agree with Warren Buffett that "easy access to funding tends to cause undisciplined decisions."
Once we decided who we wanted to work with, we knew who to hire. We searched for experienced people who crave the opportunity to produce business results and work on challenging projects. That was fine, but we also wanted a special kind of person. The best consultants have three kinds of skills: technology, business and people skills. Most of our competition acts like technology skills are the most important. We disagree. We hire for demonstrated aptitude and attitude. We want people who understand business, because they must produce business results. We want people who've proved they understand specific industries, because every industry is different.
We go after people who've proven that they understand business processes and how to use technology to improve them. And we want them to be able to decide just how much technology to use and how to apply it. The people we hire need to be able to communicate with business people. It doesn't matter how smart you are or how many technological tricks you know, you have to be able to listen to your client, understand the issues, and communicate in business terms.
By offering "SAP the Right Way", this also meant more than just hiring the right people. We needed to build a different culture with a different approach that, most importantly, provided a different and better experience to our clients.
We think we've developed that firm. We invite you to contact us so we can fully explain what "SAP the Right Way" means and how we can help you improve your business results and build profitability and competitive advantage.
EntryPoint President & CEO