The client

Japan House is a new cultural centre in the heart of London. Established by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan House showcases Japan’s rich and diverse culture and history. Presenting the very best of Japanese art, design, gastronomy, innovation and technology, the centre holds exhibitions, events and workshops to give the centre’s visitors an authentic encounter with Japan.

The challenge

Japan House engaged TrueNorth to deliver a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system that, together with associated platforms, would organise and automate Japan House’s business processes. The objective was to maximise the centre’s engagement with its visitors and patrons, establishing and maintaining an on-going relationship programme.

The main requirement of Japan House was that its staff would be able to manage all aspects of its business, relationships and activities from desktop and mobile platforms. The CRM needed to have multiple functions, with the ability to incorporate features such as fundraising, membership, patron management, ticketing/box office functionality, event management, marketing and general contact management.

The solution

Microsoft Dynamics 365 provided the core of the Japan House CRM solution, with dotmailer tightly integrated to provide advanced marketing functions.

The core Dynamics 365 functionality, combined with its easy extensibility, enabled Japan House to manage all aspects of its business efficiently. The system was chosen to provide a single, consolidated view of Japan House’s customer relationships and activities, accessible from desktop and mobile platforms.

TrueNorth delivered the solution in a series of fortnightly sprints. The system was demonstrated at the end of each sprint and deployed to a test environment, giving the Japan House team an early opportunity to provide feedback and refine the design at each stage. This iterative approach meant that Japan House could begin production use of the system as soon as each initial sprint was deployed.

The TrueNorth team built in search, analytics and reporting at various levels, from efficient quick search across multiple entities, to advanced find and personalised dashboards. To complement the Dynamics 365 features, and to satisfy the requirements for tracking customer responses, closed loop marketing and A/B testing, the solution was integrated with dotmailer, an industry-leading marketing automation service. The initial implementation also included basic integration between Dynamics 365 and a payment gateway, allowing payments to be taken directly from within Dynamics 365.

TrueNorth’s customisations followed Microsoft-supported guidelines and best practice. This approach minimised delivery time, avoided unnecessary risk when upgrading, and empowered Japan House to take ownership of the solution moving forward.

The outcome is a flexible system that fully meets the client’s requirements, and which can be readily adapted to take account of changing needs in the future.