4 min read

Success Story: an interview with Forward-Edge

January 18, 2022

We sat down for a conversation with one of our Dynamic clients, Forward-Edge, and discussed their recent adoption of our product.

They came to us in March 2020 - right as the worldwide pandemic was growing bigger and bigger - looking for a solution that would allow them to get to the next level of remote help desk for the K-12 and Higher Education market.

Here is what we discussed with Dustin, the Special Projects Coordinator.

First of all, Why DeskDirector?

We had already started the research process, much before the pandemic, to improve the way we service our clients. A lot of them use their own help desk systems and, of course, a couple of clients didn't want to handle the whole management that comes with it.

So we went and wrote our own [help desk system] and ran with that for a while, but it never really made our technicians happy: it was either a help desk that was so convoluted and complex that it was brain boggling, or another wan that was so simple that it was just unusable.

That's why I started doing my research. I reached out to a lot of companies with platforms and some of the platforms I spoke to and I had demo calls with just charged an arm and a leg to be honest, and then they always had one tiny issue that then became one issue after another.

Then the pandemic happened, which meant I had to speed it up!

We work a lot with Service Leadership and IT Nation, and it was through these channels that some friends down in Texas recommended you guys. I redirected my research towards DeskDirector and I liked what I saw. I reached out and requested a demo... it was impressive!

We loved how streamlined it was and we loved the fact that, to us, it's not its own platform so to speak, it's not some kind of self-sufficient system we have to host, it's a translator, a linguist. It takes CW Manage which is so complex and comprehensive, and simplifies it for our technicians and makes our job easier. It took a couple of weeks to adjust and get over the learning curve, and now all our techs operate out of DeskDirector and they are loving it.

We are currently gearing up to onboard another 3 clients - this is something else I really love about the product: I can have another client fully set up in less than 5 minutes.

Was there anything that you thought we did, that we didn't do with our product?

There hasn't been an expectation that we've had that you have not been able to hit.

and if we took it back, what would be the features that you'd most miss?

That's a great question! We'd definitely miss the simplification of ConnectWise, that's for sure.

More product related, the forms are extremely helpful, being able to simplify and make it quick, short and sweet for our users. Another feature that we're using although not to its full extent yet is the live chat - it's going to be the next big thing for us, we're really looking forward to deploy it to all our clients.

Have you been using any other chat tools before DeskDirector, or is it your first experience with live chat?

Yes and no. Technically yes, but professionally would be a no - let me explain. Most of our clients are Google clients, so Google Hangouts was always an option. The power users who wanted to use the Hangouts chat were 10% of the total staff, everyone else was always hesitant to adopt it. Once we are ready to deploy DD Chat, especially given how convenient and well integrated with the rest of the product is, I expect to see high adoption. Rather than putting a ticket in the wind and waiting a couple of days to see what happens, it would be a "hey, this guy is talking to me right now! Awesome!".

Have you guys started to use Tech Portal on iPads, tablets, mobiles?

Not on an iPad, but our techs have been using it on their Android phones.

any strong opinions from your customers on the product?

We've had quite a good response actually. Typically with teachers are not big fans of portal consoles, just because that's another login they have to have for another system and that's a hassle. Explaining to them the token login has been a blessing to them. For one it's more secure so that's some stress off their plate, and also no password which is another thing off their plate.

And then, just how easy it is to implement a ticket. I have used systems in the past where before you get to submit your ticket request you have to answer a hundred questions. Teachers don't really know the answers to half those questions and that's not how they should use their time.

Overall we got good feedback and the teachers that have been using the chat feature simply love it.

What about the upper management team?

The owner is loving the response he's getting from the team! The deployment of DeskDirector to the side of the business that looks after schools was so successful that we're now looking to deploy it for our MSP side, which is where our network Engineers are.

Eventually we are getting ready to open our SOC, our Security Center, for our security side of the company. When that ball fully gets rolling we will be working on all those tickets through DeskDirector.

As a side note, I've also been using DeskDirector as a Task Manager. If there's something I need to get done in a couple of days I actually convert it into a ticket in DeskDirector so I can just keep track of myself.

Last question. Anything unexpected, aside that we're on the side of the world? The most random thing about the whole process.

The only thing I didn't really expect was that I had to learn to use ConnectWise a bit better than I did. To be honest it's been enlightening. The things that needed to be in place in CW that maybe we didn't set up correctly in the first place.

Working with DeskDirector actually helped us fix things on that side too.

Serena Cappellini

Written by Serena Cappellini

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