- Ryan Dimick, Senior Director of Development "I’ve talked about being client-driven, and then I talked about being nimble and responsive to clients, and now I want to talk about how our support and services reinforces our relationships with clients. Our average client tenure is 10 years, which is a phenomenal number in almost any industry, and we’re able to achieve this by making sure that everyone at SMA Technologies is working towards keeping our clients happy by providing them with continuous innovation in our product, new service options, and amazing support."
In-house support and why that matters
While OpCon strives for simplicity, and often achieves it, our clients have environments that can be extremely complicated with a lot of interlocking dependencies. Inevitably they’re going to run into a challenge that they can’t address on their own and they need to know that we have their back. When time is critical, and a client could be losing $200,000+ per hour when services are down, support needs to be fast and effective.
At SMA Technologies our support team can resolve over 90% of request s on the same day, which is impressive when you consider the complicated nature of the calls they’re receiving. Part of their speed comes from them being highly skilled and trained professionals, and the other factor is that the support team sits about 40 feet away from the development team in our office. When a client has an issue that is critical, we take an all hands-on deck approach to solving it so that they can have their systems back up and running fast. When you have the experts who wrote the code collaborating with the support team, it provides a superior experience for our clients.
OpCon “just works”
I know I keep bringing up stats that make it seem like I’m bragging, and maybe I am just a little bit, but most of our enterprise clients average one support call every five years. There are several factors that enable this: ongoing training, OpCon reliability, and OpCon simplicity.
We offer clients free basic training every month, and reasonably priced advanced training every quarter. This is in-person at our Houston, TX office or our Massy, France office, with an experienced OpCon consultant leading the training. Class sizes are small enough that instructors can devote some time each session to individual instruction if needed. We want to empower our clients to be automation experts so that they can get the most out of OpCon.
OpCon is extremely stable because it has the capability to be programmed with self-healing functions to work around process failures and rerun jobs to ensure that workflows keep on running until you tell them to stop. When you combine the extensive user training we offer with a dynamic product that is intuitive to use and rarely breaks, you end up with a workload automation solution that makes it easy for clients to sleep at night.
Managed Automation Services
I’ve talked about how SMA Technologies is nimble and responsive, and an outgrowth of that has been the development of our Managed Automation Services (MAS) team. We’ve made a name for ourselves by embracing small to midsize clients in addition to our enterprise clients. Many of these clients are inhibited in their automation initiatives because they lack the time, training, or personnel to achieve them on their own. For many of them it’s simply the fact that they are not located near traditional tech hubs and therefore find it difficult to attract trained automation engineers.
MAS is a flexible solution we designed as a response to client demand. Along with having a trained automation engineer who’s an expert in OpCon, clients also get 24/7 alert monitoring and resolutions. We can either work as a supplemental team member, or we can fully manage a client’s OpCon environment. Our MAS team is always looking for new automation opportunities in addition to making surer existing workflow orchestration is running smoothly, and we offer a variety of plans to meet each client’s specific automation needs. It’s an increasingly popular service for clients that have automation needs and prefer to have them met by an OpCon expert.
You can follow me on LinkedIn and Twitter, where I like to share my insights into automation and technology in general. Thanks for taking the time to read this article, it’s been great to share my thoughts on client-driven development.
- Ryan Dimick, Senior Director of Development for SMA Technologies
About the author: Ryan Dimick is Senior Director of Development at SMA Technologies in Houston, Texas. Over the course of his seven-year tenure at SMA Technologies Ryan has also held positions as Director of Cloud Services, Software Architect, and Sr Business Consultant. He started his career at Corning Credit Union as a user of the OpCon automation platform and held positions in IT Operations and Programming. Ryan loves sports and competition, from ping pong tournaments at the office to running races. He is from New York and is still a huge NY Giants fan. Ryan lives in downtown Houston and is enjoying the constant stream of exciting food and entertainment options.