This talk was given by Sandeep Srinivasan, Senior Manager, Partner Enablement of Talkdesk at SaaS Connect 2019 in San Francisco, March 26-27, 2019. Get the slides

Many businesses, when they first start out, find themselves with inefficient processes that don’t offer a solid ROI.

Talkdesk was no different in that regard, but now they’ve got a better handle on what works and what doesn’t. This was the topic of Sandeep Srinivasan’s talk at SaaS Connect 2019.

His company’s operations, honed over 40 years in business, are something that any SaaS company should take note of.

How does Talkdesk implement its services?

One of the most involved parts of the Talkdesk plan is how the company implements its services for partners. While the initial setup takes six to eight weeks, the company remains available to offer support afterward.

Onboarding is a seven-step process:

  1. Discovery. Client requirements are identified during this stage.
  2. Configuration. This is where the actual set-up happens.
  3. Advanced configuration. The software is integrated into the business.
  4. Testing. This is generally a Q&A process.
  5. Training. Users are able to adapt to the new process.
  6. Deployment. This is when the service goes live.
  7. Client excellence. The company continues to offer client support.

This process was born from a lot of trial and error, and reflects where the company is as a business now.

What makes a SaaS product successful?

Of course, no matter how successful an onboarding process is, the application itself needs to be powerful, too. It’s important that SaaS providers understand what customers are looking for in a product.

There are three main things that separate a successful SaaS application from a struggling one.

  1. Sales alignment and predictability. It’s important for a SaaS application to position itself for the market. Companies need to know that you are going to be able to fulfill a need of theirs.
  2. Quality of implementations. What does it take to make customers happy? In order to be successful, a SaaS business needs to have a clear idea of customer expectations and how to meet demands.
  3. Capacity and utilization. This involves forecasting and collecting data to ensure you’re hitting the right marks.

At the end of the day, these things come from creating a process that your customers can understand, and then executing in a way that makes both you and the customer money.

Where do partners fit in?

Partners are a great way to extend your services. These include service partners, ISV partners, and channel partners and value-added resellers.

However, not all partners are created equal. These are qualities that you should be looking for in a partner.

  1. Demonstrated knowledge
  2. Field engagement
  3. Partner-led deployment

By taking on only partners who understand your product and how to sell it, you will get a better return on that investment.

How do you bring these things together?

There are a few things you need to make sure your SaaS company is breaking even. Sales alignment is a big part of success, as is proper tracking. Finally, being as transparent as possible with partners builds trust and helps ensure a solid, continued relationship.