Pierre-Luc BARBE, Rentaload’s Chief Operating Officer was interviewed by the web media “startup.info” about innovation in a period of covid-19
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Pierre-Luc BARBE: Testing our capacity to reorganize ourselves in both trying to remain safe & healthy but in maintaining as much as possible human relationship and socialization
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Rentaload.
Pierre-Luc BARBE: With an entrepreneur mind setup, I have always been dealing with projects in the industry, working in a global environment. Joining Rentaload was a new challenge to scale up a new vision of commissioning Data Centers, together with new equipment & associated services.
How does Rentaload innovate?
Pierre-Luc BARBE: Our driving modus vivendi lies in bringing always added value to our customers. Only last year, we released 8 new products that will help our customers to conduct a test in a more efficient way, with more data collected during the tests, with more reliable measurements. We want at Rentaload to pass the best of our expertise to the sector we are dealing with.
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Pierre-Luc BARBE: Impact is rather positive as cloud storage, and Internet supports are widely growing up at a very strong pace. Demand is very sustained and requests reactivity and flexibility from our side.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources, and what are the lessons learned?
Pierre-Luc BARBE: Lessons learned is to re-focus on the local team. The challenge is to transfer competences from our « head quarters » to the dedicated team on all the different countries we are operating from UK / Germany / Netherlands. From a global standpoint, as we are limited in travelling, we have to find a new balance between moving teams & skills from our main bases and expertise of the local teams.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Pierre-Luc BARBE: All face-to-face events like exhibitions, networking events just vanished, and they were out best stage to spread out our new vision. We are then forced to re-invent our digital marketing and communication to re-build a new customer relationship management. It is an on-going process, too soon to have real conclusions to share!
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
We did not receive one single penny from the UK government in all this period even though we could not work at all for a couple of weeks. We had rather prefer to spend time on energy on finding solutions by ourselves than allocating resources to ask for state subsidiaries.
Your final thoughts?
Pierre-Luc BARBE: Such period is forcing us to re-think our business approach, our strategy, all human relationships both internally but also with our customers & suppliers. It is a huge challenge, very demanding, but so exciting and motivating. In every crisis, they are opportunities, and it is up to us to make these opportunities come true.