Always dreaming of
an even better future

Chapter

01

Read

5 min

The interviewees

Jeroen Borst, Erik-Jan Kool, Janot van Wegen

Stagnation means decline. Especially in this day and age, in which technological trends come and go in quick succession, companies have to keep on innovating to stay relevant. In that process, we as Schuberg Philis truly believe that we can contribute to a better world. Starting from three key phrases, Managing Directors Janot van Wegen, Jeroen Borst and Erik-Jan Kool draw the outlines of a potential future for Schuberg Philis.

Dream

Erik-Jan: “If your company isn’t growing, you know that with the current technological trends, competitors will overtake you; that the work you offer is less interesting; that colleagues might move on to other employers; that customers ask less of you. That’s why it is paramount to go for growth. And we as Schuberg Philis really believe that we can make the world a little better. Our customers are already delighted with our work, but we want to do more cool things for them. It’ll make our customers happy—and us as well, of course. That being the case, what’s stopping us from actually doing it?”

Janot: “Starting from that idea, we invited the entire organization last year to start dreaming: what would the ideal world look like in five years’ time? Two clear wishes emerged from these talks: we want to make the world a better place, and we think that more customers deserve a little Schuberg Philis. We perform a crucial role for our customers. They see us as a dependable partner, one that helps them think about decision-making at the highest level. It’s that proposition that will lead us into the future.”

Jeroen: “We are a reliable IT Business Partner, thanks to our long-term relationships, knowledge of the customers’ business, and track record in realizing innovative mission-critical IT ecosystems. That means that we’re in a great position to help our customers with their strategic business initiatives. Expanding our portfolio in this way is in line with our traditions and allows us to further deepen our collaboration with our customers and partners. We’re just taking on a larger role as a result of the increased responsibility that customers entrust us with.”
 

Investing in knowledge and expertise

Janot: “The wonderful thing about dreaming out loud is that it forces you to think things through. What is it that needs to happen if it’s our dream to make the world better and give more Schuberg Philis to more customers? What are the challenges? What are the roadblocks? For example, we see that people from the southern part of the country aren’t joining the company yet. They say: I’m not going to drive 90 kilometers to an office near Schiphol. Isn’t it logical then to open a branch down south? It could put us in touch with talent from that part of the country. So in order to realize our dream, it may well be that we have to open new locations, giving us access to companies and people that don’t show up on our radar now.”

Erik-Jan: “As our customers are asking more of us, we need to diversify our market expertise. More than ever, we will be using technology as an enabler for our business objectives. In the past we would always have the technical know-how to come up with a new approach on our own, but the array of available technologies has become so vast that our challenge now is to connect them all in the way that best serves our customer’s needs. And that will have an enormous impact on the number of roles at Schuberg Philis: we need to broaden our scope beyond engineers, and also recruit business consultants and people with specific domain expertise.”

Because of our way of working, we’re looking for talent that has the expertise we need as well as the ability to work in teams.

Jeroen Borst

Jeroen: “But even if our numbers grow, our organizational culture won’t change. So far, we’ve always realized the impact for our customers with a philosophy that has been central to our company from day one: a team of experts in the lead. Specifically, that means two things: it’s all about experts and teams, and because of our way of working, we’re looking for talent that has the expertise we need as well as the ability to work in teams. Our dedicated teams are entirely focused on their customers, do what it takes to achieve complete customer satisfaction, and take responsibility for the full results at the end of the line. That’s what has been and will remain at the heart of Schuberg Philis.”

What's next?

Jeroen: “Our customers are seeing an acceleration of technological change. But their value chain is also evolving. For example, in the network economy there’s less need to do everything yourself. The result is that customers feel the impetus to embark on a process of fundamental change, with a destination that is often unclear. We see ourselves as guides on that journey. And we’ve got what it takes, as innovation is part and parcel of our customer teams’ DNA. That’s where innovation comes from, that’s where the talent is. And if you look at the long-term strategy, we also have Labs 271, which we use to bring external innovations into the company. After setting up Labs, we’ve already seen more proof-of-concept projects and more applied experiments. The combination of sector-specific know-how in the customer teams and the innovative strength of Labs will make sure that our initiatives remain both inspiring and relevant.”

Janot: “Another central component is the customer’s business objective. We don’t experiment for the sake of experimentation, not now and not in the future. Deploying new technology is only relevant if it aligns with the real question: how can we use this to benefit our customer’s business? That will always be the starting point, just like working with short, cyclical experiments. Many of our customers come from a world where a lot of big plans are made—plans that sometimes outgrow their idea. And before you know it you have bloated projects and a cost anchor that weighs your company down. We avoid all that by setting up experiments in co-creation, together with our customers.”

Erik-Jan: “More than ever, our customers are asking us for input and a vision. That means we will increasingly become a business partner for our customers, also with respect to innovation. At the same time, we remain Schuberg Philis. We will never let go of our way of working: freedom, little hierarchy, and a lot of independence. Nor will we abandon our focus on quality and customer satisfaction, with experts in the lead. The only way to pursue our dream is to uphold these values as our company grows, because it’s those same values that make us strong and unique.”

  • Jeroen Borst

    Managing Director

    Jeroen Borst

    01/03

  • Erik-Jan Kool

    Managing Director

    Erik-Jan Kool

    02/03

  • Janot van Wegen

    Managing Director

    Janot van Wegen

    03/03