The customer journey starts from the first interaction
Here I share a comprehensive overview of how we are organised to support customers at every point in their journey
by Shamil Hassanaly, Chief Customer Officer, Bonitasoft
Bonitasoft publishes a digital automation platform that is used by enterprise business/IT teams to create business automation projects and BPM (business process management)-based applications.
First contact: pre-sales & sales
An IT manager, CIO, or any other manager at a company or organisation who is interested in using the Bonita platform for a BPM or digital process automation project has a first contact with the Bonitasoft pre-sales and sales organisations. These teams apply a “Customer Centric Selling” approach, which means that during the sales cycle, they help the potential customer to clearly communicate the pains to be addressed, their needs, and their objectives. This is essential for us to understand how things are working today, in order to propose appropriate solutions using the Bonita platform, and for this potential customer to get optimal value from it.
During this phase with a customer, our pre-sales and sales representatives follow up closely, providing the best support possible. Occasionally this involves a demo, or a proof of concept project — depending on the needs of the customer and the complexity of the project.
Once the customer has decided to purchase and use Bonita, their customer journey with Bonitasoft continues…with a smooth handover from sales to the Bonitasoft Customer Service Organisation.
The Customer Service Organisation at Bonitasoft
We are proud to put our customers at the heart of our business, and to reinforce that important perspective we created a Customer Service Organisation (CSO), led by a Chief Customer Officer, to take ownership of customer satisfaction at Bonitasoft.
The following CSO departments work together hand in hand to support and guide our customers to get the most from their Bonita platform.
Customer Success: building ongoing relationships
The Bonitasoft customer journey continues with the Customer Success kick-off event. During an initial call with key customer stakeholders and Customer Success representatives, the customer success team will set expectations with the Bonita customer, explaining whom to contact depending on the type of service required (that is, when to contact Customer Support, Professional Services, Sales or Customer Success). The customer success team schedules the next touch point to ensure that everything is progressing as expected, and to discuss any challenges encountered.
The Customer Success team provides an ongoing value added service to our customers. They represent customer advocacy within Bonitasoft as a single point of contact, just as much as they represent Bonitasoft to those customers. We have seen that customers appreciate having this single point of contact when they need to escalate a matter within Bonitasoft, or simply to request guidance when needed.
In this way, the Customer Success team plays an essential role in building and maintaining a close relationship with people inside each one of our customer companies.
When technical assistance is needed on the Bonita platform, relating to usage questions or product behaviour, those individuals can turn to our Customer Support folks, any time they need to, while they hold a subscription with Bonitasoft.
Customer Support: solving problems and delivering solutions
Bonitasoft’s global Customer Support team, made up of experienced Bonita experts, is dedicated to providing the best support user experience to customers, around the clock 7 days a week. The technical support teams, located in Grenoble (France) and San Francisco (United States) are focused on delivering customer satisfaction, and to do so, they are often called on to go the extra mile, to help customers with issues beyond the Bonita product functionalities. This means customers who need help will find the Customer Support team available to work with them promptly, to identify the various root causes impacting the Bonita user experience, until the issue is resolved.
To build and maintain a dedicated relationship with customers, Customer Support team members work closely with the Customer Success team and keep track of all historical records. All issues encountered, all solutions found are kept track of. We get to know those environments and their unique aspects pretty well!
From time to time, the customer will get a contact from the Customer Support team as they proactively reach out to let them know about a known product concern for which a maintenance release has been made available.
Customer Support management is also actively engaged, and ready to step in, taking ownership, when needed during an escalation process to ensure the right priorities are handled on Bonitasoft side, as well as providing the right level of visibility to the various customer stakeholders.
Professional Services: building expertise
Our global Professional Services team is located in Grenoble (France), Spain (Madrid, Málaga) and San Francisco (USA). It too is made up of highly skilled Bonita experts, experienced in delivering Bonita projects with strong customer service skills.
Our consultants ensure Bonita contributes directly to the customer’s business objectives (defined at the very beginning of the Bonita project) with the best possible user experience. The Professional Services team uses a holistic approach to address both business and technical needs, and they work directly with customers or via a customer-approved official Bonitasoft partner. The customer has options to request delivery of expertise either on site or remotely.
Bonita training & certification: building autonomy
The experienced instructors at Bonitasoft are all previous senior consultants. They deliver worldwide training on the Bonita platform, so the customer can develop expertise with Bonita remotely or on site, according to each individual’s profile (business analyst, developer, system architect, system administrator) and level of expertise.
Our goal is to empower our customers to maximise value from their Bonita applications. People who will be involved in a Bonita project have access to a tailored training program, in French, English, and Spanish, with a maximum of interaction with the trainees, discussions of their own use cases. We share our best consulting practices and they get to practice through oriented exercises at each stage of the project.
The headquarters of Bonita R&D is located in Grenoble, France. The R&D team, made up of technical experts in various technologies, is focused on releasing added value functionalities to the Bonita products, requested by our Customers.
The R&D roadmap includes priority for existing Bonita versions, with maintenance releases addressing issues that have surfaced through customer engagement. R&D is connected to customers via Customer Support. R&D representatives take turns spending a week in Customer Support, and in this way they each have the chance to stay close to the field, as well as provide real time assistance when required.
The customer journey with Bonitasoft may also include interaction with the Bonita Cloud team, depending on the type of Bonita solution they are deploying. Operational and maintenance of Bonita applications on the cloud is coordinated with the Bonita Cloud engineers.
When the customer journey become a customer success story
Each Bonitasoft customer has a unique journey depending on their needs and environments. When the Bonita project that started as a set of pains, needs, and objectives is realised as a set of applications that are deployed and running, and the business begins to see the ROI it was looking for, we have a success story and a happy customer.
Thus we see the investment that we have made in open communication, customer accompaniment, and in the success of each customer to be worthwhile for us and for them. The customer journey continues at a level of maturity that we hope produces ongoing success for Bonita customers and for Bonitasoft.