Luke Melonas joined Arq two months ago as a Business Development Manager, bringing with him over 15 years of industry experience developing growth strategies, managing customer relationships and helping his customers solve their biggest problems with the use of technology.
In this interview Luke tells us why he chose Arq, discusses exciting projects he’s currently working on and what he hopes to achieve in his new role.
What appealed to you most about Arq when you were looking for a change in your career?
I feel like everyone says this, but for me it really was all about the organisation’s culture and everything being human centric. I was excited what this meant – not only personally for me and the teams I work with – but also how the internal culture would translate to a positive customer experience.
No matter your role in Arq, or who you deal with as a customer of ours, you’ll always interact with people who are passionate. We avoid buzz words and industry jargon when we can help it – and instead – focus on building trusted relationships with clients by focusing on the business problem that matters most and solutions that make a difference in people’s lives.
For my role specifically, I was confident Arq would provide opportunities to play a crucial role in business transformation projects, which is an area that really interests me. Throughout my career I’ve seen many talk about “digital transformation”, however when it comes down to it, the true focus is on traditional ICT.
For Arq, it’s all about aligning to our customers’ business objectives, making positive change and applying the cutting edge advancements available in digital, data analytics and cloud. Most importantly having an organisation behind you that can deliver on the transformational projects.
What do you hope to achieve as Business Development Manager?
I’m based on Queensland, so naturally my focus is on our customers and offerings in the Sunshine State!
My short-term focus is all about re-educating our long-running customers (along with my personal network) on who Arq is, and what we can do for them.
In just a few years Arq has gone through some exciting and significant changes that will positively impact our customers. I want to ensure everyone knows who Arq is, deeply understands what we do, where we’re going as an organisation and what that means for how we can service our customers.
I thoroughly believe my name is my brand. I want the people I work with knowing I have their best interest at heart.
Longer term, I hope to emulate the long-term partnerships I see with Arq and their largest and most well-known clients with my own clients and professional contacts that may not (yet) be a customer of Arq’s today.
To me one of the indicators that I’ve made the right call in moving to Arq Group is the many examples of client partnerships spanning longer than 10 years.
During these years the partnerships have evolved and Arq has continued to solve some of their toughest business challenges. I’ve always operated with a longer-term mindset underpinned by the value I personally bring to the relationship to deliver the best of the organisation I work for.
What’s an interesting project you’ve worked on since starting at Arq?
We’re working with a customer currently to develop a mobile experience where today only an online portal for their large member base exists. The brief was to create an engaging mobile experience for a cohort that has traditionally only accessed or engaged with the existing desktop tech, once or twice a year. Quite a significant and exciting challenge!
Our vision was to create an engaging and intuitive mobile experience that encourages members to interact with this new technology daily, as they would their banking apps for example. By introducing features like chat bots, automation, and self-service options, will give the user a sense of empowerment and ownership over their member profile, when in the past they felt completely disengaged and disinterested. We focussed on avoiding what we call “blockers” or unnecessary gadgets and widgets that ultimately interfere with experience and functionality of these kinds of apps.
This project is a great example of Arq’s point of difference in the market, deliver value and benefits to customers, versus only delivering on what an organisation thinks is needed. In this process it’s crucial to understand historic and organisational data to provide meaningful solutions and pre-empt user needs and we’ve done just that in this case.
Working with customers like this, as a strong and unified team always reminds me what an amazing and exciting time it is to work in tech, where everyone can be a player.