Not very long ago something seemingly trivial like making phone calls across the globe required complex processes and integrations with different phone companies. Today, you can not only make phone calls but even video calls in an on-demand fashion from anywhere.
A lot has happened since the telecom industry went digital and today we live in an era where anything, from a car to a meal, can be ordered instantaneously, with notifications and real-time tracking ensuring the user always knows its ‘status’.
A similar thing happened when it came to payments. We went from writing checks on paper to instantly paying or sending someone money across the globe using mobile apps.
One could argue that there was one big reason that caused this revolution. Our transition from physical to digital necessitated developers to translate complex and error-prone processes into code and APIs.
What was complex and proprietary in the physical world turned into <code> that could now talk to other systems.
Product-led takes root
With the transition to digital, product took center stage in terms of go to market strategies. Cloud software promised a new software experience that would enable departments to quickly purchase, deploy, access, and upgrade their business apps all over the internet, which in parallel shifted buying decisions from IT to business unit managers. 20+ years later, SaaS is now the norm but a new trend will permeate business software over the next 20 years.
Just as cloud apps shifted buying decisions from IT to department units, modern SaaS apps have perfected the original promises of low cost, seamless onboarding, and rapid product development. This led to the birth of product-led motions where trials and freemium experiences put users at the center. Mirroring B2C trends, application experiences drive growth and adoption, instead of manual long-tailed sales motions.
This has further shifted software decision makers from management, to teams, and even individuals. The next decade will see the rapid adoption of Product-Led Growth (PLG) first offerings and it will transform not only how software is built, but more importantly how you build a business and organization to sell and support them.
The true product-led era is here and now
In the product-led era, B2B starts to look a lot like B2C.
- Top-down, sales motions which target buyers get replaced by grassroots, product-led motions targeting the end-user.
- Big multi-year commits get replaced by usage-based micro-transactions, and
- Long, consultative provisioning processes get replaced by zero-touch self-service, value driven experiences.
In this era, code is now driving all interactions across the customer lifecycle, which has put the Developers at the center of a revolution that is quietly taking shape.
The birth of a revolution
While most companies recognize the need for developers to support go-to-market functions, the work is still prescribed as tasks. Developer work is framed as a backlog of items to deliver, with little expectation that the developer relates to the desired outcomes. By siloing developers, they get pushed further and further away from their users and customers, resulting in a product built without considering the full spectrum of solution sets available.
When it comes to the tools and systems available today for developers to do their work, they have increasingly become project-centric instead of being product-centric. In fact, some of the most used tools for ticketing and bug fixes are manager-centric instead of maker-centric.
Ten tools for a better Dev experience
When we spoke to our early adopters and design partners about how they manage their work along with product parts, what we heard was not very different from our past experiences as makers.
On average, it takes ten tools and systems to stitch together a common workflow such as triaging an incident and understanding its customer impact. Our design partners shared similar experiences as they navigated the complexities of managing data across systems like code repos, DevOps tools, project trackers, collaboration channels, ticketing systems, product analytics, and data warehouses. In this web of siloed systems, collecting the right signals to understand impact and priorities is nearly impossible.
As developers, we imagined a system where customer interactions across conversations, tickets, and clicks, come together with the Dev interactions of collaboration, triage, and commits.
If a phone can converge, simplify and bring together hundreds of physical tools and processes into a simple interface, what if everything a developer works on can be brought under one “operating system.”
If an app could democratize specialized work and make every smartphone owner a photographer, what would happen if we brought makers closer to customers and broke down organizational silos?
The question to ask is — when it comes to Customer Relationship Management (CRM):
- Where is the relationship between the user and the product?
- Between the customer (Rev) and the makers (Dev)?
- More importantly, with the developers at the center of it all — How will Devs define the future of CRM?
We call this DevCRM — a system that empowers makers to build, operate, support, and grow their businesses by putting their customers at the center, and this is what we shared in our live stream on Oct 20, 2021.
As we see in the video, a fundamental part of DevCRM and DevRev is the notion of product (code) connected to everything a dev creates or works on.
This is just the beginning and we are working on a number of exciting things we would love your feedback on.
Join our early adopters waitlist at https://devrev.ai/circle and help us build a better future.