When Alan Solomons was appointed head coach the first thing he did was to ensure that Omar Mouneimne, his right-hand man at the Southern Kings in the southern hemisphere Super XV competition, would join him in Scotland.
The scale of the task facing the defence specialist was demonstrated on the RaboDirect Pro12 opening weekend when Edinburgh leaked five tries in Munster.
The head coach had also said that their priority for this season was to regain respect for themselves and from opponents so it was not just the win on Friday over Newport Gwent Dragons, a team who had beaten them in six of their previous eight meetings, but the nature of it, that provided encouragement.
"The first thing we said was that we need a high work-rate on defence, we need to adapt to the system quickly and be very, very physical," said Mouneimne.
"I think they did take a step up. There's a lot of work to do, but what I was happy about was that we got in a lot of double hits and took them back a bit which is key to block the momentum and stop the off-loads, and it seemed like they stuck to the defensive plan which was quite nice.
"It happened a few times where they were right on our try line and pressing and they could have easily scored and before we would have just given them metres and they would have bumped over.
"Instead we stood up and were aggressive and we took them back with two turn-overs right on the try line. That's the key, that's what I'm looking for, for us to squeeze out that little bit of energy when it's required."
Another road-trip next weekend to one of the established powers in this competition, the three-time champions Ospreys, is likely to represent a sterner examination of their progress, but, with caveats, Mouneimne believes his men are visibly rising to the challenge.
"It's key that they squeezed out a win and showed the character to ride it out when it looked dire because I saw their confidence was low," he said. "I think they were on a low ebb because they were thinking that they've been here before and knew they could lose this game, but they didn't, they pushed on and they won the game.
"That's a big turning point but what they've got to realise on Monday is that we didn't win the World Cup, we won one league game and there's a ton of work to do. So we'll go back to the drawing board and we'll plug some holes.
"They were standing a bit taller and straighter [after the game]. You can tell when you feel like 'ah... maybe we can do this going forward.' That's the key, but rugby's a difficult game. If you don't stay on their backs and be specific about what you want, then you'll lose the plot."
The message he is pounding home is about the amount of work that remains to be done.
"We are millions of miles away because we didn't have a pre-season together," Mouneimne said. "If we'd had that, we'd have got it right quicker, but I'm quite pleased with the step up."