Looking back at 2021

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Looking back at 2021

As the year draws to a close, I always try and find the time to take myself out of the day-to-day bustle of heading up Walpole Partnership, so I can reflect on the year that has passed.

On a personal level, I’ve obviously been working with Ingmar (Walpole’s CPQ Partner Consultant) for too long, as his mantra of ‘never letting a crisis go to waste’ has sunk in and spurred me on to become the fittest I’ve ever been. The extra time at home has allowed me to exercise more (I may have become a Peloton bore!) and I’ve also limited my alcohol consumption. Trying to find the things that I can control, in a world that sometimes seems very much out of control, has been my personal way of coping over the last 20 months. I hope everyone has found or is finding an approach that works for them as we try and learn to live with Covid-19.

And living with actually having Covid-19 was also something that I have experienced during 2021. I tested positive just before I was about to go and get my booster vaccine, but I was so very thankful for the vaccinations I’d had, and dread to think how bad it might have been without having had them. My heart goes out to everyone who has suffered with Covid, and to the many people who have lost loved ones, have longer lasting effects or just a tougher struggle than I did to get through it. 

However, personally, 2021 hasn’t been all exercise, old fashioned lemonade and covid symptoms. Earlier on in the year, my wife Sapna and I really relished the chance for a belated celebration of our 50th birthdays and 10-year wedding anniversary, just one year later than planned. Bringing colleagues, friends and family together safely to celebrate with us was so worthwhile and reminded just how much we need to party!

And a party wasn’t one of the only signs of normality beginning to return to life. Nothing gave me more pleasure (with the aid of a lot of testing and some superb logistical gymnastics from Hayley!) of welcoming our team to meet face to face for the first time in 18 months. Not only was it the first time we’d seen each other in person for so long, but it was also the first time we were able to meet some of the new joiners in 3D!

The team has grown substantially over the last year, and we’ve been really pleased to welcome Davy, Dan (on a permanent basis), Lesley and Cassa to Walpole Partnership. We also look forward to two new team members joining us January (keep glued to our social media feeds for updates in 2022). Our offshore team has also grown and developed under Pradeep’s strong leadership – Achal, Seema and Prakash are some of the best technical people that we’ve worked with, and they are all contributing significantly to the overall strength of the company. 

As ever, the world in which Walpole Partnership operates continues to evolve. We’ve seen amazing growth in the Cloud-based services we provide, and the many benefits of Cloud technology that we’ve been espousing for almost a decade, are being well received. No-one needs a server in the basement when they have no premises to house it and no-one is able to go onsite! We’ve seen the acceptance of Cloud and the willingness to adapt and improve processes to a semi-remote world as strong drivers of our business. We don’t like the reasons why companies have been forced to change, but we do believe it is making the world of IT and business systems a better place.

In our primary world of CPQ, we’ve seen significant consolidation of other integrators, and some fascinating new entrants to the market (a special welcome to Logik.io, from the founders of BigMachines who we know well!), and we look forward to helping clients take advantage of CPQ in new and improved ways next year, and developing partnerships across the world to enable that to happen. If you want an unbiased view of the world of CPQ we always recommend checking out the sage advice from Frank Sohn and the team at Novus CPQ to find out the latest news and developments.

We’ve loved working with our clients, new and old, and we are especially proud of the work we’ve completed with NHS Supply Chain. As a UK company, nothing gives me more pleasure than to help such a critical organisation improve its back-office, enabling better service to the amazing front-line workers who keep the country alive and healthy.

Our EPM business has also flourished this year under Stuart and Soban’s watchful eyes, and we are currently focussing on the NetSuite Planning and Budgeting tools. This lets us reach a wider range of clients and deliver more Walpole wonderfulness beyond our core scope. I hope this can continue to develop and broaden in 2022.

In addition to the growth of Walpole Partnership, our friends and followers may have noticed that our branding and website had a refresh earlier this year. Stuart and Alex did an exceptional job managing this project, and were guided expertly by Sapna’s company, InnerVisions ID, on the rebrand itself, and by Anorak Cat on the website build. It’s no mean feat to take the strong opinions of an established team such as ours and create something with which the whole team are immensely proud to be associated. The hard work of all those involved with this project has resulted in a more contemporary and dynamic brand which is used and reflected throughout our new website, and which will certainly serve us well through the next phase of the company’s growth.

Our team continue to amaze me with their insight, experience, excellence and good humour. I’ve mentioned new starters and many of the team already, but let me add Divya, Emeline, Jenks, Lisa, Raju and Vishal, as well as our partners at Ben Consulting – Omar, Radoine and Hatem. You’ve made 2021 a successful and profitable year for Walpole Partnership and our clients, and you are the beating heart of the company. 

So, all that’s really left to say is Merry Christmas (or Happy Holidays) to you and yours, and all the very best for 2022. 

Looking back at 2021’ was written by Walpole Partnership’s MD, Andy Pieroux.

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