In conversation with James Solomon
In February 2021, Tribal welcomed James Solomon into a newly appointed role as Partner Manager. James' primary function is to focus on growing relationships with Tribal's core strategic partners and align strategies to deliver successful digital transformation within the education sector jointly.
We sit down with James to better understand his background, the importance of building strong relationships with our partners including Microsoft, and what to expect soon.
Hi James, what's your background, and why did Tribal stand out to you as an employer?
JS: Having worked in the IT services industry and the Microsoft partner ecosystem for twenty-three years now, my background lies in helping businesses drive towards delivering their strategic goals through successful digital transformation. My most recent role was working as a Partner Manager, assisting organisations in aligning with their core strategic partners to deliver end-to-end solutions successfully.
Tribal's ethos of 'transforming the world of education certainly caught my eye. I enjoy working within the education sector as we can help shape student success and tomorrow's business leaders. Knowing that Tribal is a global organisation, the number one provider of Student Information Systems to universities in Australia, New Zealand, and the UK, certainly encouraged my decision.
What do you hope to achieve within your role?
JS: Tribal's core vision is to enable student success through their expertise, services, and cloud solutions. To allow institutions to attract students, drive student outcomes, support student wellbeing, and connect with students in lifelong relationships, Tribal need the correct strategic partnerships to make this vision a reality. For instance, both Tribal's Student Marketing & Recruitment and Student Support & Wellbeing solutions are built on Microsoft Dynamics 365 and the world-class Power Platform to integrate seamlessly with student management systems Tribal Admissions, Tribal Submissions, and the Tribal Engage app, are built on the Tribal Edge Platform, which has the Microsoft Azure cloud infrastructure at its core. Strengthening Tribal’s partner relationships will support our mission to help institutions develop and maintain a full 360-degree view of the student to create exceptional experiences, nurture demand, personalise interactions, and build future student relationships.
Why are partner relationships vital to you?
JS: Partner relationships are essential to Tribal. Tribal has invested in this new role because it will add value to our customer base, and ultimately our partners are critical to delivering end-to-end solutions successfully. We will be able to support the sector with the right investment in the right partners across the globe. Working alongside industry leaders and innovative technology partners such as Microsoft will help Tribal to drive digital transformation in the education sector.
What value are you hoping to add to the business and Tribal customers?
JS: I hope to bring my twenty-plus years of working within the sector, my tenacity to succeed, and my passion for working with like-minded people within education to drive change. I am excited to be supporting the development of solutions with our partners that can bring leading technology and platforms to our customers. Initially, I have been working closely with Tribal’s solutions built on Microsoft Dynamics 365. Recently Tribal's Student Marketing & Recruitment solution went live on Microsoft AppSource and the plan is for more solutions to follow such as Student Support & Wellbeing.
We are aiming to continue developing solutions and aligning with partners that will provide value to our customer's student success strategies. It's all about attracting students, driving student outcomes, and connecting with students in lifelong relationships.
Why is partnering with Microsoft so important?
JS: Microsoft is the leader in influencing digital transformation in many sectors, and education is no exception. Microsoft's platforms allow businesses like Tribal to bring their knowledge and skills within the education landscape to shape transformational solutions. Microsoft has developed an Education Transformation Framework (ETF) that guides educational institutions on their digital transformation journey. We strongly align to the framework’s Student Success pillar. It’s all about how student success and lifecycle management technology enable student outcomes. A systems approach to help recruit, retain, and graduate students through their academic years – and maintain a lifelong learning relationship Microsoft has one of the largest partner ecosystems. Working closely with Microsoft, their technology, and their frameworks opens up the opportunity to work with many other complimentary Microsoft partners to deliver successful end-to-end solutions to our clients.
Finally, what's next?
JS: At Tribal, we are continually innovating. One of our aims is to continue building additional partner relationships, plus continue working closely with our existing partners and strengthening those relationships to offer the latest technology solutions to the education market. I am excited to be joining Tribal to help assist our customers to drive student success.