Santa Cruz Tech Beat


At Looker, the Love is Baked In

By Margaret Rosas
Department of Customer Love, Looker

February 14, 2017 — Santa Cruz, CA

When we announced that we were changing the name of the Looker support team to The Department of Customer Love, a few people thought we were pulling their legs. But the truth is, putting customer feedback and relationships first has been key to Looker since day one.

That’s why we want to take the time this month to celebrate our award-winning support team and the core of Looker love.

I’ve been with Looker from the start. Right out of the gate, we were a very small, tight-knit group trying to launch and spread the gospel of a new data platform while keeping everything afloat. The few of us sat around a small kitchen table, laptops fired up, and used early chat tools to field customer questions and concerns.

Because the engineers – including Founder, Lloyd Tabb – were sitting around the table with me, a typical chat scenario went something like this:

Customer: We tried to do XYZ but it didn’t work. Can you help?
Margaret: Oh, that sounds like a bug. Hold on for just a moment, please.
Margaret (off-chat): Hey Nate. We have a bug. There’s an error and this is what’s happening. This customer thinks it would be ideal if Looker could do XYZ.
Nate: Hmmm… That’s a good idea. Let me write some code. (Quickly writes and submits new code)
Margaret (back on-chat with customer): I think we have a fix. Let me restart your system. This updated version of Looker should do what you’re hoping to do.
Customer problem: Solved.
Looker functionality: Improved, thanks to direct customer feedback.

This communal style of working not only allowed us to to perform real-time fixes, but the feedback we’d receive over chat helped us to improve the quality of the product, delivering a solution that met the challenges our customers encountered.

Because we were usually sitting around a table with the engineers behind Looker when we took a chat, it was as if the customer was chatting with the whole company!

This intimate setting was lean, agile, and allowed us to be super-responsive to our customers. A formula that was critical to the formation and development of Looker. Full transparency was baked into the Looker ethos from the very start.

“Why do you use chat and not a call center?”

Chat is intimate in more ways than people realize. Because Looker DCL is more than simply “product support” for our customers, chat allows us to be a direct part of their user experience.

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