The secret behind the success of a Client Services Team (in a growing SaaS company)
What is the secret behind a successful digital asset management implementation project? It is a highly professional and experienced Client Services team — the people who are tasked with introducing advanced software to marketers’ everyday lives.
Two members of our team at Brandworkz — Rajeev Jolly –Head of Client Services and member of the management team, and Vanessa Marcotullio — Project Manager share their secrets to making every client and every project a success.
Two people behind Brandworkz Client Services success
Raj and Vanessa have over 10 years of experience working in project management each, bringing a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the team.
Like the other members of the team, they come from different business backgrounds, bringing different perspectives and experience to the department. While Raj has a degree in marketing, Vanessa is a technology enthusiast. They create a synergy that inspires the rest of their team to bring marketing technology to life.
The Client Services team has achieved a remarkable Net Promoter Score over the last few years. They can deliver any level of implementation within 90 days and existing clients continue to expand the scope of their business with Brandworkz.
The secret ingredient of a good client-vendor relationship
As a growing company, Brandworkz is expanding into different countries and industry sectors. Thus Client Services are faced with the challenges of implementing systems for varied clients with different requirements, while maintaining long-lasting relationships with current clients. They play a crucial role in developing collaborative client relationships, actively reaching out, asking questions to understand how their use of the system is evolving, and if there are improvements that can be recommended.
Vanessa believes it is the combination of her empathy with clients and her knowledge of technology that builds good client relationships.
“Because I have an understanding about technology, most of the time, I can get back to clients and explain if we can do [what they’ve asked]. When you understand your client well enough, and they trust you, you can say things like: “I am not sure if this is such a good idea but how about we try it another way?”
Raj agrees. “We want our clients to feel that they can talk to us and our relationship with them is being valued. That is what grows the business.”
A good client-vendor relationship starts with an in-depth understanding of the client’s needs.
“When you work in the Client Services team, you need a strong understanding of our clients; their overall business strategy, where they’re going, how they are structured, but also in the people and their requirements. Trust takes a long time to build up and you have to prove that you’re worth it.” Says Raj.
Vanessa agrees. “At Brandworkz we get to learn all about our clients inside out. So when we are developing new features and there are things I know my clients need, I can send them an email saying ‘by the way guys, remember you asked about these features that were a nice-to-have? We are developing them and we would like your input.’ I think it’s very important that our clients feel that they are a part of our development.” Says Vanessa.
Creating the golden triangle
Delivering an excellent client service is a collaboration of many teams within Brandworkz; particularly the triangle of sales, Client Services and software development. When we receive a brief from a client or a prospect via our sales team, the Client Services team goes to the developers to discuss the scope, timings and costs. They strategically analyse the request and make recommendations back to the client on the best way forward.
There are so many ways to configure Brandworkz digital asset management. No two clients use it the same way, so this is where the client consultation journey starts. “One of the things I always say to clients is to think about who is using your system and how it will work with your business processes. Do you have a lot of requests? How do you make it easy to find? Is it intuitive enough? Will your end users enjoy using it?” says Raj.
At Brandworkz, the Client Services team get involved in the sales process as early as possible. By doing this Raj believes “you can reduce the possibilities of unforeseen issues with development. You get a little dose of realism and a little glimpse of the team you will be dealing with. If the relationship starts before the contract is signed then that is a good thing.”
In Raj’s experience, the role of Client Services is to manage expectations of the process — both from the client and the developers’ perspective. : “It takes a mutual understanding the amount of work required by both client and vendor. What will be delivered, when it will be delivered and how it will be delivered. By explaining process in a consultation and then managing that process well, you get happy clients.”
Building a collaborative culture within Brandworkz
At Brandworkz there is a strong roadmap and a long-term vision. Building a long-term plan requires constant communication among internal departments and Client Services is key to this process. “Failure to communicate results in people not knowing what’s going on — a recipe for disaster. At Brandworkz, we believe that our brand reputation and clients’ trust can’t be won if there is a gap in between what is expected between one department and another.” Says Raj.
The Brandworkz culture is collaborative. “We want everyone to feel that they have the right to speak up, to challenge the status quo and to encourage change when it is needed.” Says Raj. Vanessa agrees. “Everybody in the company is passionate about what they do. Everybody cares about Brandworkz and our clients in the same way.”