Client Satisfaction: On the Front Lines with a Project Manager

Client satisfaction depends on productive relationships. As a Project Manager at Katabat, I’m responsible for nurturing those relationships by ensuring that our clients’ needs are met in a -thorough and timely fashion.

Process and Communication for the Win

Process driven speed is one of Katabat’s pillars and core to setting ourselves and our clients up for success. At Katabat we deploy an agile approach to the software development lifecycle. Therefore, our work falls into a pattern delineated by sprints and planned in user stories.

For many of our clients, I manage the initial deployment. I help new clients understand the onboarding process and software functionality, while concurrently setting internal expectations and planning the work calendar to ensure our team is prepared to meet or exceed requirements.

For our enterprise clients, we tend to have ongoing projects with dedicated resources. Initially there may be some customizations or API integrations necessary to their larger deployment. We assign more resources to match the scope and timeline, and always include a technical manager. I plan the user stories using Jira storyboard templates, and the client signs off on user stories before we begin development. This is a critical step to confirm the client knows exactly what functionality they’re receiving and the associated deliverable timeline.

Handling Challenges

There’s two primary triggers that impact client satisfaction – timeline and functionality or features. Both topics can generate healthy dialog and pushback from clients, which we welcome. Client feedback is a gift which helps us improve our business process and delivery for all clients. Many of our clients provide services to business clients of their own using our platform. Not surprisingly, they sometimes request extra features in the middle of development. Depending on the nature of those changes, it can be challenging to add unplanned extras without extending the timeline. Fortunately, our agile methodology allows us to quickly and holistically reassess priorities with each sprint. Our disciplined approach allows us to evaluate which priorities can wait, shift or if internal work can be placed on the back burner to meet our client needs. I’m happy to say that our frequent, proactive communication with clients allows any differences to be quickly resolved, resulting in improved customer satisfaction.

Measuring Client Satisfaction

After development, we progress to QA testing. We conduct our own internal testing, and hand over deliverables to clients for user acceptance testing (UAT). We support clients with use case suggestions to test and to be thorough, we encourage a diverse set of client specific testing. We’re proud of our quality metrics in this phase. For example, we track defect removal efficiency (DRE) and it is routinely 95% or better. (That’s above industry averages of 92.5% for agile development.)

Clients who use all, or many of our available features, can attest to our flexible, configurable platform and the value it’s added to their organizations. On the surface, individual products or features may seem like competitors’ offerings, but clients that have integrated the Katabat platform into their business ecosystem tell us it provides far-reaching benefits, especially in terms of the ironclad data security. Deploying our solutions can head off a lot of other problems down the road, whether information security, compliance, or efficiency-related. It’s rewarding to me to provide a valuable service to our clients, to help solve their pain points and to have a personal impact on client satisfaction.

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