Tomislav Karafilov on The MVP Show

Tomislav Karafilov on The MVP Show

Tomislav Karafilov
Microsoft Business Applications MVP


  • A brief introduction about Tomislav Karafilov’s life – family, food and hobbies. 
  • Tomislav Karafilov’s involvement in the User Group Community – the Microsoft Cloud & Collaboration Hannover and Power Platform User Group Hannover. 
  • Talks about the hosting platform Tomislav Karafilov is using for running their user group. 
  • How big is the User Group? 
  • A conversation about Tomislav’s company – SoftwareONE 
  • What does SoftwareONE do? 
  • What types of projects and Apps Tomislav is working and building on around Power Platform? 
  • Tomislav’s journey into becoming a Microsoft MVP? 
  • The best thing Tomislav discovered from becoming a Microsoft MVP. 

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[mark]: today's guest is from Hannover Germany he's a senior consultant at SoftwareONE he was awarded his first m v p in twenty twenty he's a co founder of the microsoph cloud and collaboration community in Hannover and the power platform user group in Hannover fantastic effort you can find links to his twitter linkedin and blog in the show notes for this episode tomislav welcome to the show

[tomislav]: hello thank you mark hello to everyone who is listening thanks for the invite glad to be here

[mark]: good to have you on the show as because i have been following you should i say stalking your instagram account for some time and seeing all the the activities you get up you always seem to be out in the country side are exercising in some way and it just looks amazing

[tomislav]: i'm riding the bicycle because i'm also in the home office like every other one in the current situation but i need to have a little bit off fitness i would call it so i'm riding bicycle sometimes only half an hour sometimes thirty five kilometers to fifty kilometers it depends on how many times i have

[mark]: wow wow so good so good so tell me tell me about hanover and and also maybe explain your name because it doesn't look like a german name to me

[tomislav]: that's correct Tomislav Karafilov is my name my parents are from northern from northern masadonia from gu labia they have went to germany seventy two i think but i'm born in germany i went to school in germany i have studied in germany i loved in germany i also love till now i've built also have children so everything of my life is in germany and yes i'm living in the near of hanover we built a house fifty six years ago and children all grow up so everything it's fine and everything is all right here

[mark]: it's nice it's nice what's the what's the best food to eat in hanover

[tomislav]: i would say so it's it's a grilled sausage with a hot sauce i don't know curios maybe it's something that is also known at other sides but that's something i like on the other side we have everything chinese food greek food and what i love i'm doing barbecue a lot i have my macedonian background we have a lot of um different things to eat how is it called popricar maybe it's the same in english grilled paprica a lot of garlic potatoes and a lot of different meats shashlik everything like this

[mark]: m i use a lot of smoke paprika when when i when i i've got a salmon dish that i make and i often use cumin and smoke paprika as my salmon rub very nice

[tomislav]: wonderful and when you are doing slow cooking so not very hot but long time on on small temperature

[mark]: very nice very nice so tell me about the user groups you know that you're involved in so the cloud and collaboration community and also the power platform user group tell me about those

[tomislav]: i'm driving those both use groups together with my co hosts step an reel and we know each other for a lot of lot of years may be also about fifteen years we have had a relationship working relationship to call it so for sometimes we lost everyone from the its so called germany but at two south and seventeen we meet again and meeting together and he said driving to a user group it's in braman it's about share point do you want to go with me and i said the great idea why not then we went there one and a half hour par car to braman had the user group went i had a lot of times speak together in the car we did that for two three four or five times and then we said wouldn't it be cool to have our own user group around microsoft cloud around everything that we are doing and at two thousand seven it was a lot of share point stuff a lot of the things we are from both from the development side and so that we decided hey let us join the user group men still but let us build our own use group and for that we created the microsopt cloud and collaboration community because we said we want to focus on the microsopf cloud not only on share point we have sometimes as themes we have share point teams and after a little bit of time because stephen and i were from the development part of the journey the power platform raised and we said it would be also cool to have but of a separation so let us build also a power platform use the group and to talk about this themes and that's the reason why we have to use the groups here in hanover

[mark]: wow so so what do you use to host you use group what is the hosting platform for running membership and and advertising the events and things what do s

[tomislav]: so currently we are using meet up dot com as the platform where we are so currently we are using meet up dot com as the platform where we are announcing our events we are posting the date the time the program there but we are doing a lot of social media stuff around twitter to say hey people come to our use group come to our meetings and so on that's the thing that we're using

[mark]: excellent excellent and have you have you got back to running the user groups in person or you're still running them virtually with covid

[tomislav]: we started to south and seventeen was m s c c c c h three cs and the first meet up and that's what i want to tell to everyone who is listening we were three people stephan i and one guest that we invited because we we knew him we have prepared power point presentation we had a beamer we had a room everything prepared but we were only three people the next time we were four people i think the next time we were five people and so on so our meet ups our use group meetings grow slowly but that was totally okay for us because it was also a new thing for us so what is it why are people running use group is the thing why they are doing that and in this time in this beginning time we had profited it was also for us great thing to raise our experience to prepare slights to talk for people to talk when we from month to month we got more people to talk for people that are not known to get uestionsquestions we couldn't answer at the moment when the questions came so for everyone who didn't went to use a group go to use a groups please go to use a group get in contact speak with the p le that are always lovely people great people great experience for everyone

[mark]: it's good it's good say how much is it growing

[tomislav]: oh we are i know us are groups in germany who are counting people that's not the intention from stepan and for me we are doing it for us and for a our community people so we were we are around sometimes we are twenty to thirty people sometimes are a little bit more but we are not a user to thirty people sometimes are a little bit more but we are not a user group wanting to get one hundred two hundred five hundred because we can't handle it and as we started we had a great problem to find the property where we can do our user group meetings because going into a company to hold the user group everyone was saying hey we don't go to a user group to the company so the company was in front but we don't want the company to be in front we want that our theme and the community the people would be in front and after some months we found we found great location from a schooling company where they had everything that we needed tables chairs beamer everything that is good for presentation and that was a thing where we were very happy because we had this location and the people were wearing happy that a place where they can go and it was not at company a i mean consulting company or another consulting company so that

[mark]: good so let's talk about actually your company for a moment because SoftwareOne and i find it very interesting that in australia and new zealand you know which is the region i am software one is a big brand and it's particularly big in what we call council so municipal bodies government bodies that look after a town so they're generally responsible and i think as finance one one of the products and that software one has finance one is that the p system

[tomislav]: softer one is selling licenses a lot of licenses for for europe for different for softer one is selling licenses a lot of licenses for for europe for different for different things for different systems they are a great microsophbound background selling licenses and now SoftwareOne is transforming to a future workplace to a consulting company and that is the thing so interesting for me because i am from the development part going to the future work press everything around collaboration that we have and so on and they are transforming currently from having license management license selling they have also own products like go part for managing license back up simple and so on so don't make like go part for managing license back up simple and so on so don't make very much i sing for them but it was i'm still i'm from yngeneuary there so four and a half months i'm in the future workplace advisory team where i have the opportunity or the possibility to get many projects from different customers to everything around power platform but also share point teams and so on that's wonderful

[mark]: so let's talk a bit about the power platform what type of projects are you typically doing is in what type of apse you're building you know what are the use cases if you're like for the app that you're building

[tomislav]: oh that is um m a wide range of things we are doing so it depends we call it or i call it also a little bit it depends on the maturity of the customer so everyone in the current situation maybe has turned on teams are using teams maybe they are using share point and so on so everything that they have is the collaboration part and when you're using share point then have something like oh i can edit this chap in form why power what is power as oh i can open this interesting we had the great governante we don't we and share with everyone with someone externally and so on but i can click on this power ebbs or power automate and there i can use connectors to send every of our hired email into the world and no that's not correct don't forget the power platform governance part so it depends when we are coming to customers that anew to the power platform we are asking and looking for how is the governments inside of the company if governance is missing we are doing something like a government and governance workshop with the customers together to say hey this are the possibilities the platform offers we can show everything of this and then we have to decide together what are the options we should turn on or turn off in your company and then are the next steps for companies that are using power as or power power ultimate to get in touch with the process people so we're in touch with the atman with it if we have it based projects but also with the people who are doing the business because they know the business but they don't know the tools and we are a little bit like a translator business translating to functionality with power platforms

[mark]: yeah yeah so good so good so can you share a little bit about your yeah yeah so good so good so can you share a little bit about your journey to becoming an m v p how did that come about for you

[tomislav]: how did this come it because i have fun in that what i'm doing it's not anything that you're that you can that you can buy or that you can do something like a course and at the end you you're an m v p it's more important and that's what t was also so important for me do things that you love that not a problem or causing you pain do things that you that you love that not a problem or causing you pain do things that you like to talk about things at the first time as i said i went to to meet up then i built my own met p i was an organizer then i'm a speaker at a small meat up a speaker at a conference maybe i'm a speaker now different conferences and so on next week as i'm a microscope built i'm a speaker at the german chapter so this are the things stepping out of your comfort zone growing in one and the other thing is then coming when you have contact when you're looking what other peoples are doing create twitter account follow the right people learn from them do things so that is like i became m v p sometimes someone asked her did you want to be an nvpifwoels would be nice what i have to do this this this i have done everything of that and yeah i succeeded

[mark]: yeah it's good what was the the surprise or the you know that you didn't realize before you're an m v p that you found out after you became an m v p like what kind of one of the best things that you've found about becoming mvp

[tomislav]: the overwhelming number of informations that you get that you don't get when you are not an m v p and when you're when you're a microscope employe maybe you get this information in the area you are employed with but it's someone who is always handling with the microsoph products but not being someone of inside of microsoph for me the overwhelming stuff was hey now i can see things that other people are seeing in a month and half of a year sometimes in a year so many informations about things that are coming things that are new discussions they are asking us for our opinion so this is something that was overwhelming and it's still overwhelming i think i received last year about nine thousand emails around the male groups where i have joined so there is a lot of things to read

[mark]: well well so true Tomislav thank you so much for coming on the show

[tomislav]: you are welcome

Tomislav KarafilovProfile Photo

Tomislav Karafilov

Tomislav Karafilov is working for SoftwareONE Deutschland GmbH, Germany. He is co-founder of the Microsoft Cloud & Collaboration Community Hannover (MSCCCH) and of the Power Platform User Group Hannover.