Internet Creations recently posted a “State of the Product Address,” a webinar devoted to exploring recent enterprise efforts to capture customer feedback as well as the related product upgrades inspired by the feedback.
In the recent past, before 2019, Internet Creations had split its development resources between professional services and products. However, after some reorganization in the first part of 2019, the pace of product development is now accelerating in scope and scale.
As Howard Yermish, the Director of Product for Internet Creations, says, “We are building more stuff.”
Howard was joined in the recent webinar by Joe Reale, a Product Manager at Internet Creations, and Stephanie Ramos, the Events Manager and resident webinar guru at Internet Creations.
The team discusses some exciting new features for several core Internet Creations products, including Email to Case Premium, Case Merge Premium, and Case Flags, as well as the most requested feature for the ever-popular Simple Survey.
In concert with the changes, the team also discusses how Internet Creations intends to keep customers in the loop with changes to the push update process as well as continued efforts to capture more customer feedback.
Company Vision: How Internet Creations is Empowering #AwesomeAdmins
In characteristic fashion, Howard begins the discussion with a rousing rendition of the Internet Creations’ company vision: “Empowering the world to offer the perfect service experience every time.”
For Howard and the team, this vision focuses on the #AwesomeAdmins, the true Salesforce experts, who use Internet Creations’ products to deliver a “perfect service experience” for end-users and customers.
As Howard notes, “the best customer experience starts with the best tools.”
Email to Case Premium
As part of the recent upgrades, Internet Creations is offering an entirely new Lightning experience for Email to Case Premium (E2CP).
Howard and Joe demonstrate this experience with a helpful tour through the new E2CP Lightning look, which includes written documentation and helpful links to explain all of the 167 or so settings. A new “Search Settings” bar easily surfaces destinations for settings, and Signature Slayer now has a dedicated Lightning component that easily enables users to “slay” (and recover) images.
However, the “meat of the changes” to E2CP answers a more fundamental concern of admins: Since different teams may have requirements that require different features (which may run counter to each other), how can admins support a variety of business processes?
A focus of the development for EC2P includes features customizable for each support team, including “time closed until new case creation”, “enable/disable auto-add new contacts”, “email template selection setting and template folder selection.” and a feature that Joe is really excited about, the new “customization of the comment field.”
For Joe, enabling teams to configure E2CP for each of their team’s needs is a game-changer.
Case Merge Premium
Looking forward, Case Merge Premium will soon solve the challenge to provide automatic merging of duplicate cases. Currently, the team is prototyping a new “Confidence Scoring” mechanism, where Case Merge Premium will score cases from low to high, according to the likelihood of a duplicate.
A high score implies a likely duplicate, which can be confidently merged. A low or medium score, on the other hand, may require a closer look from the support team.
The intent of this change, of course, is to save time, yet Howard notes, since this feature is also intended to work across different business processes, Internet Creations will need customer feedback to assure the product is truly productive and that end-users can use the feature with, well, confidence.
Howard has a soft spot for Case Flags because it’s all about prioritizing work, a universal problem that is becoming harder and harder to answer. The upcoming Case Flags feature will improve a team’s ability to prioritize the cases that matter most by supporting multiple aging processes based on record type or field value.
Essentially, admins can now define unique aging processes for any record type and/or variations based on case field values, assigning each aging process a specific speed according to business priority.
To do this in the past, admins had to create their own workflow rules; soon admins will be able to configure Case Flags for a diversity of teams with a few simple clicks.
Howard and the team recognize that some admins with prior Case Flags foundations or unique workflow rules may have concerns about implementing this new change. That said, the upcoming functionality will enable a graceful transition and increase flexibility out-of-the-box.
The Most Requested Feature for Simple Survey: Skip Logic
The team is also excited about an upcoming new feature for Simple Survey. In the survey world, everything is about improving response rates. Internet Creations now hopes to improve response rates by personalizing the survey experience with Skip Logic, skipping irrelevant survey questions based on initial survey responses or responses to follow-up questions.
The end result, as Joe notes, is a shorter survey: “That’s why we’re calling it Skip Logic and not Branch Logic. Because it makes surveys shorter and increases response rates.”
Of course, skipped survey questions can create reporting problems. The Internet Creations team will solve this issue with Survey Insights, which will incorporate Skip Logic into a streamlined report which clearly reveals the skipped questions.
Howard is also urging customers to experiment with another new feature recently built into the product, enhanced duplicate protection using the latest Google CAPTCHA (version 3) service to identify robots and scripts, without requiring survey recipients to do anything to prove they aren’t a robot. No squiggly letters or picking out images of traffic lights.
Changes to the Push Update Process
To continue creating successful products, Internet Creations’ product team has also identified a need to mature with product development.
To be more proactive and preemptive, Howard asks a fundamental question: “How can we make sure you need less support and we need to fix fewer things?”
The goal is to reduce friction. To be proactive, the team will strive to assure all customers have up-to-date products with the latest functionality. This should reduce support cases for issues that have been resolved with new product versions.
To be preemptive (about potential issues with Salesforce updates), the team has resolved to offer more frequent push updates–especially with sandboxes.
Of course, the team is mindful of how updates change the products for end-users, so the team wants to make sure customers know about the products in advance, and that customers have enough time to test the updates and incorporate them into their respective orgs.
Capturing More Customer Ideas
As part of the evolving enterprise efforts, Howard and the Internet Creations product development team is sounding the call for more feedback–specifically for thoughts and ideas about AppExchange products.
Howard is urging customers to schedule 1-on-1 time with product managers by visiting this link: http://ic.force.com/productfeedback
(Note: this is not for support questions; the Internet Creations’ team wants your thoughts and ideas!)
As Howard notes, “it’s so important that we hear from you,” because the more viewpoints the team sees, the better they can improve the products.
Howard has also heard that customers are interested in learning from other customers, too. How are other customers solving problems?
The product development team is planning monthly meetings about different products that will be limited by invite only. So talk to your account executive if you’re interested.
In the end, all of these changes are about delivering better service. In defining the perfect service experience, Internet Creations is guided by the four pillars of the Service Experience Suite: responsiveness, utilization, personalization, and feedback.
These new product features and initiatives attempt to support these pillars by translating key service philosophies to truly empowering tools.