Q&A with Sam Loveland, VP of Customers for Life

Q&A with Sam Loveland, VP of Customers for Life

She was likely the busiest woman during our Community Day, meeting FinancialForce.com customers and partners from all over the world.  Sam Loveland, our new VP of Customers for Life, joined us just two months ago, and has already made a huge impact on customer experience.

We chatted briefly about her goals and expectations and her candid thoughts around her first Community Day.

1. Hi Sam!  You joined the company about 2.5 months ago and I know it’s been nonstop for you the entire time.  What has it been like for you so far?  How did you spend these weeks?

It has been an exciting time these last couple of months meeting everybody in the company and getting to know them better.  What I can tell you is that we have a great team and everybody is excited for the future of the organization.  I’ve spent the first few weeks getting up to speed on my new organization (Customers for Life, CFL) and meeting with everybody individually so I can better understand first hand what is working and where are areas that we can focus on as an organization.

I also met with other parts of the company from marketing, finance, HR, sales, and product to understand what they would like to see from our organization going forward.  Customers and partners were also very helpful in providing additional insight.  All of these meetings have really shaped the strategy for the CFL organization for the future and key focus areas for my team.

2. What was Community Day like for you this year?  What were some of your highlights?

Community Day was a great experience for me as it allowed me to meet with a number of customers and partners at the same time.  It allowed me to really understand what our customers and partners are looking for and how excited they are about FinancialForce.  It was really nice to see the audience attendance at the event.  I couldn’t believe how packed it was at all times.  Many of our sessions were standing room only, which is a great testament to creating an agenda that meets what customers are looking for.  I really liked the Customer 360s awards and getting to meet those that have done an extraordinary job leveraging our platform to get the most value out of the products.  As always, it is nice to meet with customers one on one to get to better understand their implementation and what their goals are as a company and the value they get from us.

3. Is Community 2.0 gaining traction? What do customers think of it so far?

Community 2.0 is definitely gaining traction, but we want to see more customers logging on.  That will be the focus over the next few months to drive more engagement to our Community 2.0 site.  The customers that are on there though, seem to be leveraging the training videos that are available to them.  They are also starting to engage in conversations on the Forums.  We are going to be hosting various user groups over the coming months and will be leveraging Community 2.0 to get the message out and to drive the agenda.  Our first user group will be in London, and the next one is tentatively planned for New York.

4. What are your primary goals for 2015? 

I have several goals for 2015.  One of my first goals is to drive the Customer Support organization to be truly a global organization that can support our customers 24×7, with follows the sun case model.  We have staff already in the US, UK, and Canada, and we are looking to add additional resources in APAC to be able to provide this additional offering.  Look for some changes to our Premier offering to highlight some of these changes in the early part of 2015.

Another goal is to scale our Customer Success Management (CSM) team.  As our customer base grows, we need to continue to work with them to drive adoption and usage of the FinancialForce platform and find new and innovative ways to engage with our customers.  Community 2.0 is going to be key in enabling us to reach our broad customer base and to educate our customers on new features that are coming out, train them on those features, and to allow our customers to network with one another.

We will continue to grow our Consulting organization, but we also want to leverage our partner community as much as possible.  Our teams will be working closely with our Partner team at FinancialForce so that we can create the best experience for our customer implementations.

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