Staff to specialise on products
Our cloud native products are so intuitive and easy to use that it’s much quicker to train staff to the level we need. For our other products with much more in-depth functionality we’ll now focus skills and training within the company on either academic or finance streams in each team.
In my new role of Chief Operations Officer I’ll work with Product, Implementations and Support helping them to work more closely together within their product speciality area. I’m sure that with our customer numbers rising this will make us more effective and efficient, and give our staff more job satisfaction and sense of achievement.
Changes create more cooperation
I’ve learned from experience that building trust comes on the back of good communication, and wherever possible that needs to be in person or over the phone. Having had first-hand knowledge across departments has helped enormously to understand how beneficial it is, for example, for someone from product to be knowledgeable and confident enough to offer help with a support query or deliver some training. So building even more communication between the teams because of their shared focus will help bring them to work more closely together and understand their different roles.
I remember the first time the benefit of this really sank in. While I was on support I looked after quite a feisty staff member at a school, she knew what she wanted, and she was very forceful. But also she was fun and would have a laugh! Then as a consultant I went to the school to deliver training for her. When I arrived she was in the hallway with her arms out and gave me a hug, and it made me realise what a great relationship we’d developed. A proud moment for me.
Looking forward to meeting you!
As COO I will still to be very much available to talk to our customers, then whenever I go to events, there will still be someone who remembers my name! I like to be forefront of the user groups, and am very much looking forward to our conference at Lord’s Cricket Ground in November. It’s nice to do something different with our customers, having so many of them together in one place, it’s a good opportunity for them to speak to others from schools in different regions. We’re also having guest speakers, including from ISBA, and there will be some of our partners there to help with other areas of interest.
So, for those of you who read this and recognise my name – I hope you can make it to Lord’s so I can say hello!