Software development is everything at Freshworks. Not only is it the backbone of the company’s revenue stream, but it is also what sets it apart from its competitors. Its frequent release schedule enables it to quickly take feedback from customers and partners and make those suggestions live within the product.
“A lot of companies in the software space are typically doing three to four software releases per year,” says Bobby Jaffari, North America president at Freshworks. “But we are generally making new releases on a weekly basis.”
The business software provider recently launched its Freshdesk integration with Microsoft Teams and quickly added over 400 customers who are already reaping benefits from the joint solution.
“Now that we have launched it, we are continually talking to customers and prospects about how we can improve it for future releases,” explains Jaffari. “A lot of our customers have been asking how they can take information from their Teams conversations with clients and include that within their business workflows for case management processes.
“To respond to this, we are looking at leveraging bots and artificial intelligence in the integration. Using these kinds of technologies, our customers can analyse the conversation between two individuals and decide which parts of that conversation should be pulled into a customer support workflow. We are very excited to see how this could help our customers.”
Collaboration is an integral part of Freshworks’ ethos and its understanding of the value of a partner community – like Microsoft’s – is helping it to accelerate its growth for the future. For example, it has been working with software distributor SHI to bring its solutions to the market.
“Traditionally as a business we have focused on a more direct model and it has helped us get to a scale where we are today,” says Jaffari. “However, we are starting to shift our focus to partner communities because they enable us to extend our reach and identify the partners that can truly help us to help the end customer.”
Another organisation that Freshworks has partnered with is customer experience consultancy firm AmberLeaf Partners. AmberLeaf is helping to improve experiences for its clients by equipping them with Freshworks products. Customers can select the most practical solutions that will add business value, balance cost, and provide strategic direction for their organisations.
“Through this partnership, Freshworks has helped customers establish communication across the organisation, increase productivity, and collaborate effectively on day-to-day tasks,” says John Kariotis, partner at AmberLeaf.
Freshworks is also leveraging its relationships to efficiently scale and expand its reach through its partners who develop joint solutions to better serve the needs of its client base.
“SHI, for example, has a specific group focused on Microsoft, so we are working with those partners to ensure that our product is tightly aligned with Microsoft’s solutions and the end-customer’s needs,” says Jaffari. “As they are talking to their clients, they can share how we work with various Microsoft solutions.
“The partner community is generally much closer to the end customer, so they are aware of initiatives and solutions that they are looking for. These partners often also want to be the technology partners for their clients, so they need to be able to offer the right solutions. This is where Freshworks comes in. We provide incentives and co-selling opportunities, and we can support these partners with our product and technology expertise as they drive sales engagement.”
In addition to providing Microsoft-aligned solutions and integrations, Freshworks uses the company’s technologies to improve its own business operations.
“We are a big user of Microsoft Azure Active Directory across the business,” says Jaffari. “We also leverage Power BI to analyse and measure internal processes across every department.”
Collaboration has clearly been a key part of Freshworks’ business approach in recent years, and Jaffari believes that this ‘joint effort’ mindset will continue to be relevant in the coming months, as the world begins to recover from the effects of Covid-19.
“It is true that the technology industry has fared better than others during this time, but it would not be fair to say that it has not been affected,” he explains. “We have customers who have been heavily impacted, for example those involved in travel and hospitality, and this has had a ripple effect on us, as the technology partner.
“But we have also seen a positive side to this crisis where we have been able to add value – we have supported many organisations and institutions such as hospitals and healthcare providers, to reduce the impact. When the pandemic really took effect in early 2020, there was a lot of uncertainty and questions from communities that our customers could not keep up with. We worked with them to enable bots, customer portals and other feedback mechanisms, to efficiently handle inquiries and keep up with the flow of traffic. Thanks to our partners we have been able to extend our capabilities to more customers during this time which has been essential to their survival.”
Learn more about Freshworks’ products at freshworks.com/therecord
This article was originally published in the Autumn 2020 issue of The Record. To get future issues delivered directly to your inbox, sign up for a free subscription.