Following on from the last article profiling system administration, I am pleased to introduce you to an integral part of our company; the sales department. After setting up the sales department at Leaseweb from scratch, to now to see it with over 26 people feels like a fantastic achievement. I am proud to have grown such a successful team, and bringing in new and experienced members recently has strengthened the teams even further. Without these people building long-term relationships and ensuring satisfaction with our customers we would not be where we are today.
Leaseweb’s sales ‘heroes’
The blog post is part of a new series, which will appear on an occasional basis to give an inside look at some of the departments at Leaseweb that ensure a great experience for our customers.
Sales professionals are the entry portal for customers initiating a commercial relationship with Leaseweb. Highly trained and with considerable experience in the hosting industry, the Leaseweb sales team has worked for many years to create the optimal solutions for customers seeking servers and internet services from Leaseweb. The Leaseweb sales department is composed of a number of key units, working together, all with the common objective to exceed customer expectations every day.
Keren Rubenstein is Team Lead for Sales Support. Keren notes that Sales Support is involved with every phase of the delivery cycle. Issues involving sales quotes, payments, or final deals often land with her team. “Our job is to ensure the new customer has a place to go to receive a prompt resolution if there is a problem with an order. Sales issues often end up at Sales Support. We keep at it until the customer is satisfied.”
However, her mission goes far beyond satisfying Leaseweb customers. “Once we see an issue, it is the goal of Sales Support to develop systems and procedures to avoid a re-occurrence of the problem. We are constantly seeking to improve the customer experience at Leaseweb. Currently, there are 6 executives in sales support with more on the way.
Jesper Verkade, Sales Support Executive, mentioned that the Sales Support department often resolves issues even before a customer knows there is a problem. Steven van Esch, an employee of 4 years at Leaseweb and another Sales Support Executive, recalls the time when a customer could not wait for the build of a custom server, and he was able to deploy an express server from Leaseweb’s automated platform, ready to go, in 5 minutes. For a reseller with immediate requirements, he deployed 100 servers in less than an hour.
In the future, Keren notes, Sales Support will be pro-active in dealing with sales ticket resolutions. Sales Support plans to initiate Requests for Changes (RFCs) directly, so that improvements can quickly be programmed into Leaseweb sales management systems. While at present the Sales department functions during normal business hours (8:30am-5:30pm Central European Time, Monday-Friday), Keren indicates Leaseweb will soon be experimenting with weekend hours to provide the best possible customer experience.
Robin Lim has been an Account Manager at Leaseweb for more than 3 years. “Customers arrive at Leaseweb by mail, phone, and live chat,” he notes. Most customers start a relationship by email, and then often use Skype IM to ask questions or customize an order. Currently, Account Managers are divided by verticals. Robin primarily handles the “Internet Professional” group, which are often large, sophisticated, heavy bandwidth users. Other verticals include “Resellers” and “Traditional Business” customers.
Currently, there are 10 Account Managers, including Senior Account Managers, at Leaseweb. Each is assigned a group of customers to provide end to end sales management. Account Managers endeavor to anticipate future customer requirements and quickly offer solutions. Robin notes Leaseweb expects Account Managers to learn as much as they can about the customer needs and often new Leaseweb products and services are developed from the feedback of account managers. Leaseweb has grown to be one of the largest hosts in Europe largely by successfully anticipating the needs of its customer” Lim stated.
Adam Moore, represents the new breed of Business Development Managers (BDM) at Leaseweb. “We consider ourselves the ‘hunters’” he says. Adam is BDM Team Leader. Business Development Managers operate in a global marketplace. BDMs approach customers directly to offer the superior network and services of Leaseweb to meet customer data infrastructure needs. Utilizing sophisticated market intelligence and their own keenly developed relationships, BDMs seek market sectors that can benefit from Leaseweb’s quality and global network.
BDMs are channel oriented. By carefully developing new sales channels, BDMs specialize in creating new opportunities for Sales. For example, to meet the specialized needs of resellers, a variety of “white label solutions” were created.
BDMs are constantly monitoring the hosting market and offer brand visibility and continuing market presence, while always making clear the Leaseweb sales proposition of superior quality and a sophisticated, highly efficient network. “A BDM maintains and develops vital links to enhance product development. Leaseweb is continually refining its products and services to meet emerging customer needs,” says Moore.
“Really,” notes Moore, “BDMs are the sharp tip of the spear. A good BDM develops new high value customers, which can then be transitioned to a highly qualified account manager.” The BDM then moves on to the next opportunity, assured the customer will receive the best possible sales assistance from a knowledgeable Leaseweb Account Manager.
Moore is very excited about the new cloud solutions Leaseweb is offering. “Clouds come in many forms – some are private, others are “express” and can be quickly configured.” For customers with fluctuating requirements cloud solutions are often ideal. Clouds can offer customers extreme flexibility to expand without the need for continually increase his hardware footprint. With a cloud solution, Leaseweb is able to offer its customers cutting edge, high value technology, designed and provisioned by highly trained and certified Leaseweb engineers and technicians.”