Sometimes technology firms are too smart for their own good.
The case of the onetime smartphone kingpin, Blackberry, is a good example for our purposes. In the late 1990s, the company’s smartphone and tablets were all the rage. Their offering of an arched keyboard and revolutionary instant messaging technology were real game-changers within the mobile industry. Leading into the early 2000s, Blackberry’s encryption technology remained unrivaled.
A few years later, however, the Canadian company’s decline was rapidly underway when it chose to zig, while everyone else zagged. While the entire rest of the mobile industry focused on building bigger touchscreen displays, Blackberry chose to hunker down and protect what it already had rather than expand outward. Unable to keep up with the iPhone and other competitors, Blackberry’s once-dominant worldwide smartphone market share had shriveled to 0.2% by 2015. Within a couple years, the company’s CEO announced an exit from the smartphone-making business.
Their real problem? They didn’t give enough thought to the user experience.
Listen to the Software User
In this instance, the user experience demanded a more graphical and easily accessible display rather than tactile keystrokes.
Software and other technology-adjacent firms typically succeed by blazing out of the gate with the latest new thing nobody has thought of before, but – more than most industries, because of the future-forward nature of the business – can drop off the map swiftly without constantly adapting and listening to customer needs.
Within this sector today, increasing attention is directed at driving more predictable revenue streams from recurring-revenue business models. Regardless of the goods and/or services served up by technology firms, be they through SaaS subscriptions, the leasing of resources, milestone-based consulting engagements and more, the models used are exponentially more complex in terms of the billing and revenue processes and calculations.
High Demand, High Expectations, High Speed
The technology-consuming customer is demanding and savvy, expecting the product of choice to cater to the needs of consumption-based billing requirements with internal tools nimble enough to handle a high number of customer-specific alterations to this arrangement. If not, these customers are not shy about moving elsewhere to get what they want.
When it comes to RecVue and the software & technology industry, it’s all about handling these big volumes at scale. Our advanced platform, which melds a powerful billing engine with a built-in data mediation layer (DML), addresses control through configuration. This capability offers our customers better visibility to import data and exceptions through UIs.
Technology solution provider, World Wide Technology (WWT), faced customer invoicing delays of up to four months+ due to a typically old-guard combination of manually collected usage data, multiple validation layers and hand-reviewed contracts.
The benefits of RecVue’s DML as part of its applied monetization platform for WWT included the following:
- Capability to read usage data from multiple input sources
- Support for multiple source file-formats including CISCO, CAAS, Cloud Broker, etc.
- Ability to monitor data flow and manage exceptions
- Option to approve or reject data using the provided control screen
- Ability to manipulate data to add more values before being consumed by RecVue
Old to New Guard Shift Results in Massive Improvement
By being able to mediate usage data, along with automating contracts and deploying agile billing through RecVue, WWT reduced its time-to-invoice by 94%, from more than 120 days down to 1-3 days.
WWT recognized what it needed to change to remain relevant and thrive. That’s not surprising, given the ingenious technology at the heart of its business. The fact they did something about it might be, but shouldn’t.
To learn more about how the most advanced billing, revenue and partner compensation platform can help your software and technology enterprise adapt and move forward, please visit our industry page.