Software Executive Magazine

February/March 2018

Software Executive magazine helps software executives grow their businesses by showcasing the business best practices of our readers, executives from established and innovative software companies.

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Editorial Advisory Board ALESSANDRA LEZAMA CEO Abacus Data Systems MARNE MARTIN CEO ServicePower JOE MEYER Founder & CEO CentralBOS MICHAEL MITTEL President RapidFire Tools KATIE ROGERS VP, Customer Success SalesLoft STU SJOUWERMAN CEO KnowBe4 MARK SOKOL VP, Corporate & Solutions Marketing, ConnectWise JOHN TATA VP, Partner Sales Toast DAVID WIBLE President & CEO Industry Weapon TOM BRONSON President & CEO Granbury Solutions PATRICK CAMPBELL Cofounder & CEO Price Intelligently DAN CHANDRE SVP, Strategic Partnerships Booker Software JIM CLOUGHLEY VP, Software Engineering Microdea DAVID DUNCAN VP, Sales Epos Now TIM GODDARD Senior VP, Marketing Corum Group BABAK HEDAYATI Cofounder & CEO TapClicks SCOTT HOLDEN CMO ThoughtSpot KEVIN KOGLER Founder & President MicroBiz EAB Q How has your customer onboarding process evolved in the past five years? What is the secret ingredient to customer onboarding success? A THE CUSTOMER ONBOARDING PROCESS has evolved to be more sophisticated in the presales process to involve solution architects and more knowledge of the customer's business and key use cases prior to the contract being signed. Even if solution architects are not involved in the late stage presales process, technically proficient sales engineers can create a smoother and more efficient transition to the professional services team, who may also include some developers depending if there is need for some code changes or integration support. We can also make sure there is some continuity with customers if the solution architect is the same, or at least part of a common team. Regardless, the secret ingredient is to avoid losing the trust and knowledge from the customer generated in the presales process and have to train the services team from scratch. We want a transition to implementation that is seamless to the customer that includes people who understand what their use cases, objectives, and desired business value are. Customers dislike onboarding processes that don't take into account what has already been shared or where a vendor isn't prepared to onboard the customer. MARNE MARTIN is the CEO of ServicePower, a field service management software company, where she has led the growth and launch of new technology and successful go-private. She has successfully completed an IPO, a privatization, and a number of privately held trade, private equity, and venture capital-backed deals resulting in attractive exits. A PROBABLY THE MOST SIGNIFICANT CHANGE IN THE CUSTOMER ONBOARDING PROCESS at Granbury over the last five years is the customer's growing requests for simple, do-it-yourself implementation. While we've certainly made great strides in that regard, there also remains that subset of new customers that prefer, and are willing to pay for, full-service, professional implementation. Regardless of which of these categories new customers fall into, it is imperative to set clear expectations from the very beginning of the project. Be sure to communicate who is responsible for each step of the implementation, and then hold the customer (and yourself) accountable for completing those tasks on time. Throughout the process – the secret ingredient is over-communication. TOM BRONSON is the president & CEO of Granbury Solutions, which he helped grow from 20 employees in 2010 to over 200 employees today with more than 10,000 customers. He is also the former CEO of DiamondTouch, a pizzeria POS software company. A WE'VE STREAMLINED THE ONBOARDING PROCESS FOR OUR CUSTOMERS while simultaneously adding functionality and value. Our customer success area has grown in numbers over this period of time, as has the level of service we offer. By constantly improving service, our pleasantly persistent customer success managers are incentivized to get customers onboarded quickly. In our industry, much of the onboarding activity is categorized as a managed service. Our competitors charge for these, but we include over half of these services in the product purchase, making it a simple and economical decision for our customers. The secret ingredient is to make your product truly easy to use and have an incentivized customer success team in place to provide a high level of service, making customers happy they purchased and use the product. STU SJOUWERMAN is the founder and CEO of the integrated security awareness training and simulated phishing platform KnowBe4, Inc. Sjouwerman's fifth startup, KnowBe4, debuted on the 2016 Inc. 500 list at #139, the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 at #50, and #1 on the Tampa Bay Best Places to Work for 2017. Software Executive is happy to welcome Patrick Campbell and Mark Sokol to our editorial advisory board! ASK THE BOARD SoftEx SOFTWAREEXECUTIVEMAG.COM FEBRUARY/MARCH 2018 7 Have a response to our experts' answers? Send us an email to atb@SoftwareExecutiveMag.com .

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