Before we introduced Salesforce at PaySauce, things were running smoothly enough. When I say smoothly, I mean that our operations were held together by super smart people working hard across six systems for billing, sales and contact systems. Sure, we were getting by, but we knew that scaling would be impossible in such a disjointed environment.
PaySauce’s vision is to make payroll effortless and employment relationships frictionless. To do this, we had to make our internal workings seamless first. We needed technology that would provide our team with a single source of truth and help us elevate our customer service, sales and marketing efforts.
Here’s a situation that may sound frustratingly familiar to anyone working in marketing or communications. Soon after joining PaySauce, I tried to send a newsletter to customers in a rural region here in New Zealand. I quickly learned the only way I could do this was massively convoluted — I had to download a specific spreadsheet, manually sort it and then upload the names to a mailing system. Worst still, there was no way for our contact centre or sales team to know I’d ever sent the email!
All this to say, before Salesforce, nothing was necessarily broken, but it certainly wasn’t efficient. Everything has changed for the better since we implemented Salesforce with plenty of lessons learnt along the way. Here are some takeaways I hope other ESMBs can learn from.
Six months into our Salesforce journey and we simply feel calmer and more confident. Calmer because we’re not constantly switching between programs and our team always knows who they’re speaking to. And we feel more confident because our team has all the information they need to nail their role sitting at their fingertips.
And when we’re more confident, we’re more ambitious — I can think about bigger and better campaigns we can run. Previously, we were more likely to analyse what’s happened in the past, but now we’re shifting the focus from tactical to strategic.
Having a central source of truth has had an enormous impact on our business, helping us achieve 87% year-on-year growth. Things are more transparent too. For example, before Salesforce, if our CEO needed specific data we’d quickly drop everything and manually download the reports. Now though, our whole team can log onto Salesforce and find the intel they need.
Thanks to Salesforce, our customer engagement has improved too because we can visualise customer journeys and personalise our conversations This helps us to see where things may not be working and devise alternate solutions to improve conversion rates. The reduction in admin and data monitoring means our digital marketing manager can roll out more journeys for segments — and improve our personalisation to those segments.
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PaySauce’s tips for success
It hasn’t all been smooth sailing. Here are some of our lessons learnt along the way:
- Consider your timing when rolling such a dramatic change to your business operations. We initially launched before Christmas in 2021, which tends to be a busy period for payroll. In retrospect this wasn’t ideal: the timing put a lot of pressure on the team executing Salesforce, as well as on the support team.
- Invest in your team. Give them training early on and, if possible, arrange licensing across all levels of your organisation. We made the mistake of only giving licences to operators. This meant we skipped execs, which made the onboarding journey a touch more complex, as having transparency and visibility throughout the entire process was necessary for getting buy-in across the company.
- Be strategic and prioritise your goals. In our case, we wanted to increase customer numbers without increasing headcount. This meant the customer experience was key for us; we started by analysing how the customer journey could be more efficient and personalised.
- Have Salesforce champions. We had a champion who pulled the whole implementation together. She had a lot of institutional knowledge, could bring stakeholders on board and map out the priorities for key stakeholders and users. That said, I’d recommend empowering more than one person to share the load, as having a sole champion puts a lot of pressure on them.
Looking to the future
Now that we’ve got sales and customer support sorted, we’re looking to enhance our marketing. We’re using Pardot and Marketing Cloud to help us enhance early-stage interactions, get more personal with prospects and build out automations and journeys.
And now, I can easily send newsletters! And not only that, our open rate has dramatically increased from 37% to 52%. Oh, the magic of targeting!
So if you’re considering Salesforce but are not quite ready, here’s my advice: be brave and go for it! The enhanced connection across our teams has been a game changer operationally.