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Members Spotlight: Paul Flanagan - SCS Cloud

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17 May 2024

Our members spotlight this month is with Paul Flanagan of SCS Cloud based out of our COLONY Jactin House venue. As the UK Sales director for SCS Cloud we wanted to sit down with Paul and discuss everything to do with SME's and their software.

In the heart of Manchester’s industrious Ancoats area stands Colony’s very first venue – Jactin House. And nestled in the corner of JH’s coworking members area, sits an interesting fellow… Paul Flanagan, and his furry sidekick, Rocket.

Under the guise of speaking with Paul to understand what SCS Cloud does, and why they chose to run their epic Sales Operation from Colony, we got to play ball with Rocket.

Heads’ up, reader – if you’re an SME with ambitious growth plans and you don’t have the foggiest about which software is best suited to help you scale your operations, it’s worth popping in to see SCS Cloud’s head Sales honcho (Rocket) and his human sidekick, Paul.

Hey Paul! Can you tell us a bit about what you do for work?

Hey! I’m the UK Sales Director of SCS Cloud - one of the world's leading NetSuite partners, who also have teams dedicated to Salesforce, Integrations and Smartsheet. We help SMEs all over the world streamline their operations and foster growth with tailored software solutions.

TL;DR: We’re a one-stop-software-shop for SMEs with ambitious growth plans.

Sounds very grand! What sort of companies do you work with? Is there a specific industry or size that your services benefit the most?

I guess it is - over 37,000 businesses globally use the software we implement.

We’re not exclusive to any industry per se. We support a massive range of businesses all over the world, from Finance to E-commerce, Manufacturing, Field Services and more.

Industry aside, our clients usually have at least 20 members of staff and have big growth plans (internally and geographically). Instead of struggling to integrate lots of different software programs (from finance to e-commerce, inventory management, CRM’s, and more), these companies usually come to us to help them implement one central system to manage and oversee all key operations in one place.

Our solutions are built on leading practices which means right from the start, our customers have a core solution ready to use. But our main role at SCS is to understand our customer's requirements and business objectives and make sure each solution fits their unique needs. This personalised approach makes sure our customers get the best possible value from their purchase.

The benefit of using NetSuite is it allows for seamless scalability and eliminates the need for disparate systems and manual data entry.

What’s one of your favourite things about working in Manchester?

The weather! Only joking, it’s most definitely the people. Maybe I’m biased because I was born a Northerner, but I find the people of Manchester to be some of the friendliest and most welcoming in the UK, which is why me and my wife have set our roots here.

I did try living down south, working directly for NetSuite, but it just wasn’t the same as Manchester, everyone’s pretty open and sociable. It’s a super diverse city where lots of people from all over the world feel at home.

How do you expect the role of the Sales Director to evolve in the coming years, and what skills and expertise will be most valuable for sales director to possess?

That’s an interesting question. One thing I can already see starting to creep into roles like mine is Artificial Intelligence.

Ultimately I think humans will always prefer to buy from humans, but AI is a tool that salespeople need to get comfortable with because of it’s potential to improve the efficiency of our role. It’s even more important for me because the services SCS Cloud sell are, in essence, all about efficiency data visibility.

The two main ways I can see AI influencing my role in the near future are:

  • Helping us to analyse our processes, spot areas for improvement, and automate simple tasks.

  • Enabling better, more in-depth data gathering and analysis for improved decision-making.

All these things will hopefully allow people in positions like mine to focus more on exploring new, untapped sales opportunities, as well as creating even more value for our existing customers.

Given the requirements of SCS Cloud, what made you choose to use a coworking space instead of a traditional office?

Our business promotes a remote working policy, which gives us access to a huge talent pool that’s not restricted by geography.

Because of this, all my colleagues are remote or home-based across the UK, Europe, and North America. But I’m so much more productive when I’m in a professional environment and surrounded by other people. I didn’t opt for a single-person office because I bounce off’ other people’s energy, so I guess I came to Colony to find coworkers and boost my productivity and wellbeing!

It also helps that I can bring my dog, Rocket, into the office. Colony’s super dog-friendly and it makes me feel better knowing he’s surrounded by people who care about him having a great experience in the space, as well as me.

How has being a part of our community affected you?

Since joining Colony in November 2023, I feel like I’ve had the perfect balance of productivity, networking, and social well-being. From Day One, the team made me feel really welcome and valued, and that’s never gone away. Every day, I have interactions with the staff and other coworkers in the space, which really helps to keep me from feeling isolated.

Also, like I said, getting to bring Rocket in with me is a huge bonus. He gets loads of fuss from both the staff and other coworkers which is nice. Without Colony, he’d just be at home lazing around while I work. I also love the regular events you guys put on for us (especially the pizza socials)! They’re a great way to network with other professionals, and the food is always top-notch and who doesn’t love a freebie?

Paul (and Rocket), thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us. We really do love having you both in Jactin House, and we look forward to sharing many more pizzas and pawsecco’s with you.

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