Welcome to the #DaletTeam blog series! When it comes to customer satisfaction and making the product onboarding processes a seamless, pleasant experience, it takes a team that has seen something of the world. Today we talk with Remi Marchand, Technical Account Manager for Dalet, about his role and helping Dalet customers getting up to speed on our platform.
Dalet: Thank you, Remi, for taking some time to talk about your own journey with Dalet. With your background in both management consulting and IT, what exactly brought you to working with Dalet?
Remi Marchand (RM): My education is in IT, my degree coming from an engineering school in Paris. Once I had my degree in hand, I was actively seeking opportunities overseas for both personal and lifestyle reasons. It was Dalet that posted a contract for recent graduates to work abroad, and I jumped at the chance. I applied, and the rest is history. I was looking for a new adventure and I got that with Dalet. And what an adventure!
This opportunity with Dalet has been nothing less than fantastic. I really like the industry, particularly in the diversity of customers’ workflows. For example, I work with:
- long-term TV broadcasters who are facing industry changes such as adapting to competing streaming services.
- radio broadcasters, which remains a very active, very busy industry.
- clients outside the broadcasting industry. One of my non-broadcaster customers use Dalet’s solutions both as an ingest hub and a media asset management tool, where they can easily publish content to YouTube.
Dalet has a lot of great things to offer. I like the company atmosphere and culture where colleagues help each other, the different backgrounds, and how Dalet is present across the world. We’re global, but we are still very much connected with one another. We know each other well. It’s a great place.
Dalet: As Customer Onboarding is a key for success with Dalet, how would you describe this process? When it comes to the Technical Account Manager job description, what does a TAM specifically do to streamline the process and get clients into the Dalet ecosystem and help them succeed?
RM: The onboarding for SaaS products, such as Dalet Media Cortex or Dalet AmberFin Cloud Transcoder Service, is a lighter implementation phase than traditional on-premises IT & Broadcast projects. The idea of the onboarding phase is that you are at the interface between the operations team (usually setting up the infrastructure and the backend in the cloud) and the customer. The goal is to make everybody work together to spin up the environment, and that way the customer can achieve what they wanted to do. So you collect customer’s goals, you find solutions to accommodate what’s currently in the product, and you find what the customer wants to do. Our approach to onboarding new clients begins with setting up workflows according to their needs so they benefit from Dalet’s products straight away.
Dalet: Right. That makes perfect sense. Launch the platform, start getting things done.
RM: Exactly. This is why we need somebody to check in with our customers just to see how they are doing, how the client feels about Dalet Flex or Dalet AmberFin’s performance, examine system usage, and how the service is running in their environment.
The other onboarding process I tend to helm is serving as a technical project manager, overseeing the transition from project phase to support. The way this all works is the client will have a single point of contact (the TAM). They handle technical questions and escalations when needed, but are also available for guidance, maintenance suggestions, and preventative actions. I have weekly meetings with the clients, review any support tickets, and gauge their level of satisfaction with their Dalet solutions. We make it work; and if I don’t know the answer, I don’t stop until I find one. That’s our discipline at Dalet.
Dalet: When it comes to your background, you have a unique global perspective on things. You’ve been educated in France and Germany, you worked as a teacher in West Africa, and you also work with US customers. How do you feel this experience benefits you and your customers in your role for Dalet?
RM: I don’t know about unique global perspective on things. Like any other experience, you always learn something.
As far as teaching people something new, there are three reasons Dalet is a great company for me in this sense:
- First, working on the technical side of our products, you always learn something new
- Second, Dalet is by design a company where success happens through collaboration. Everybody helps each other, and I love that. Everybody here has an expertise which compels you to reach out to other people to solve your problems. Knowledge sharing is part of the company’s DNA, and that’s something I really like. It gives me the opportunity to be the student, and the teacher as well.
- Third, part of the support work is to train customers so they can be more successful, more confident and better manage their operations. When they feel they progress, this brings them a similar feeling to that of an accomplished student.
I definitely like getting to know our clientele, building trust over time. This drives me in my current position.
Dalet: How do you proactively partner with end users and help them get more value out of their Dalet solutions? Why is feedback – good or bad – so important?
RM: Getting feedback is fundamental. SaaS or not, feedback is the first step to know where we are, what we do well, and what needs to be improved. The idea is to keep improving, both on your own work practice and on company processes, communication, product, and many other aspects of our operation. Through honest feedback, you also build and deepen the trust with your customer, a key aspect of a long, healthy relationship, especially during the support phase when support engineers are remote.
Even though we have yearly satisfaction surveys for the whole Customer Services group, I ask my customers for feedback every couple of months just to know how things are going, or if people have positive or critical feedback. It’s always good to know how to improve. That’s important to me.
Dalet: You have touched on how important the TAM plays in customer satisfaction. Could you expand on why it is so vitally important to have a TAM involved with a project?
RM: I believe in the added value brought by having a TAM. We see lots of situations on-site where having a TAM contributes to smoother operations, and better customer and vendor relationship. Having a TAM really contributes to an overall better experience for our customers. Not only is escalation faster, but resolution time is shortened dramatically. Also, by having a TAM, you also have a dedicated resource — the same person — to discuss how to maintain and keep your Dalet site and infrastructure up-to-date. The TAM can also provide input on new workflows, review any modifications, and keep an overall view on the Dalet deployment. Having this trusted relationship usually helps when renewing contracts, upgrading infrastructure or running software updates, new workflows or optimizations, bug fixing, and more. Customers really appreciate us being proactive and when we do preventive maintenance, database or site audits, and diagnostics.
Training is a big part of this job as well, where the objective is to allow admins to be resilient and autonomous in their daily system management activities. Quick wins like facilitating log collection and explaining how systems are architected make a huge difference.
Dalet: Between your education and your background, travel is more than just a hobby for you. It’s part of your basic programming. With COVID-19 shutting you down, how did you manage that itch to wander?
RM: Actually, in the current context, almost everything is still remote. The only things we need to work are a reliable internet connection, a table, and a chair! So personally, I have been fortunate enough to still travel a little in Europe while following the local COVID restrictions. It wasn’t easy, but I stayed as safe as I could.
I have missed visiting customers, getting the feel of the customer’s site, meeting in person and share more than a webcam and Zoom link. There’s nothing like being there.
Dalet: Remi, thanks for taking part in the #DaletTeam blog series.
RM: Thank you for the invite!
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Remi Marchand is originally from France and has lived in different countries worldwide. Earning a Computer Science and IT degree in France and his Master’s degree in Germany, he spent 2 years in West Africa (Burkina Faso) as a Computer Science and Math teacher. Remi started with Dalet in 2018 as project engineer, eventually becoming a project manager before switching to support and customer services as a Technical Account Manager. Today, Remi is Dalet's Customer Service Manager for the Americas.More Articles By Remi