The Cheshire Cat: That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.
Alice: I don’t much care where.
The Cheshire Cat: Then it doesn’t much matter which way you go.”
Although it may seem like a superfluous, non-technical reference, this excerpt from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland exemplifies how businesses perceive product development and management. It illustrates the importance of well-informed decision-making, which is entirely driven by what a buyer wants rather than what a product management team deems right and necessary. As for “where you want to get to,” organizations must overcome scope creep, shifting specifications, and hidden dependencies on projects in order to deliver true business value–not just functionality. This sounds simple, but you would be surprised how often projects miss the value promise.
This is where companies like Facet Interactive are moving the needle. The team at Facet Interactive is singularly focused on empowering clients with data and value-driven decision-making. The team at Facet acknowledges that data-driven decision making has become a core product management skill and that data is essential to enable well-informed decisions at an acceptable velocity. Facet leverages full-spectrum analysis of business operations, marketing, and sales to ensure strong ROI for clients with their integrated marketing campaigns and product development. At the core, the company leverages digital transformation to navigate businesses and help them optimize the four foundations of growth—analytics, tooling, process, and automation—to engineer organizational change across sales, marketing, operations, and development teams.
“Companies often don’t have the right decision making processes in place, where teams can come together and look at data and draw the right inferences. The key across both product management and our digital transformation offerings is our focus on data-driven and value-driven decision making. We are heavily focused on leveraging data from all available sources to assist businesses in making the best decisions, quickly,” says Peter Vasilion, CEO, Facet Interactive. In line with this, the company offers analytical insights and automation systems to facilitate sustainable digital transformation and effective product management.
Focus on Value-First
Facet Interactive channels robust product management by focusing on clients’ KPIs and holistically blending the derived metrics to detail ‘value statements’ (i.e., assumptions and hypotheses) that provide a guiding measured outcome to analyze cost-benefit against. With value statements detailed in agile workflows, Facet Interactive identifies quantitative business opportunities, measuring estimated costs (story points) against measured value (estimated outcomes). As a part of its value-driven product management and development services, Facet empowers its clients with agile discovery, planning, and development life cycles that are instrumental in identifying, architecting, and building value-focused features. The company focuses on building shared understanding and vision for a product’s roadmap through business process flow analysis and story mapping techniques. These value-driven development and agile discovery methodologies involve hypothesizing, setting up tracking for, and implementing value-driven digital experiments with products to ensure that they marry business process requirements with product features. They also help product managers with data-driven product improvements by presenting targeted and trackable KPIs that tie specific outcomes to specific features. To drive key objectives and outcomes, the appropriate data collection and analytics tools, calculations, and reports are set up at the beginning of a project to power agile decision making. Besides the initial set up, the right product management tools are deployed to build engaging product stories and roadmaps. These stories and roadmaps are then translated to development tasks, goals, and milestones while setting successful product management processes in place. With these processes, managers can ensure that the product requirements are effectively communicated and reviewed for quality assurance as developers build the product on an agile basis, followed by validating product value with regard to its effect on the target KPIs and bottom line.
As a company fueled by constant innovation, Facet Interactive is on a mission to streamline workflows and reduce manual process overhead–culling long-term operational inefficiencies and creating room for growth. Keeping up with the increased demand for automation in the post-COVID world, Facet Interactive ensures that its clients can reap the benefits of automated product development intelligence through automated reports for product performance, integrated learning for maximizing business outcomes, and integrated tools for agile ceremonies.
The company seeks to drive digital transformation by integrating technology solutions that help clients reinvent their strategies as per market demands.
Typically, Facet Interactive takes a ‘land and expand approach’ while engaging with clients. The company, based on its detailed analysis of a customer’s business infrastructure, builds a prescriptive plan with specific milestones to help a project reach its completion. At the outset, CTO, Jordan Ryan, delves deep into addressing the present pain points of clients such as underperforming websites, stagnancy in the sales pipeline, and more. The partners spend considerable time analyzing clients’ business frameworks and subsequently devise a plan of action to fix major roadblocks. “It is more about quality,” notes Ryan. “We focus on a holistic value-driven development process and thereby take a step back to understand a customer’s business as a whole.” The company utilizes its know-how from pay-for-performance engagements and takes a metrics-driven approach to find out the hidden pain points in customers’ business model and the relevant setbacks triggered by them.
To illustrate more, Vasilion cites a success story wherein Facet Interactive’s modular approach helped a commercial construction insurance compliance firm improve their custom insurance certificate tracking portal. During the engagement, Facet Interactive identified widespread issues with brittle custom PHP code, out-of-date Drupal modules, and application design issues. After scanning through the client’s tracking framework, the California based firm found areas in employee workflow, document management, and overall performance that exponentially improved the application as well as reduced the maintenance and support required to maintain it. “This year we assumed that with the pandemic looming, several dimensions of their services needed to be changed. This is when we decided to take a comprehensive sales enablement approach,” remarks Ryan.
We focus on a holistic, value-driven development process taking a step back to understand a customer’s business framework as a whole
Soon after, Facet Interactive aligned strategies to boost the client’s sales and, through an effective sales engineering program, helped the client modernize. In addition, it successfully scaled their cold outreach, reduced ongoing maintenance, and mitigated security costs to enable a consistent deployment of features and programmatic updates, optimize sales automation, and others.
Setting the Course for Success
With innovation at its core, Facet Interactive plans to bring more automation to the table. The company looks to an open-source future, replacing expensive cloud SaaS applications with open-source solutions—like the marketing automation suite, Mautic. Facet Interactive guides clients with the best practices for launching Mautic streamlined for minimal maintenance while also providing the flexibility of high availability deployments in Kubernetes with Mautic Helm Charts and Terraform infrastructure. With its open-source Mautic K8s (mautic-k8s) distribution, the company aims to solve high availability, site reliability, and scalability issues for its enterprise clients. Facet Interactive also champions changing the pricing economics of marketing automation by breaking traditional practices of cost-per-contact. “As an affordable alternative to the competitive SaaS solutions, we are looking forward to yielding better outcomes through open-source marketing automation and are open to engaging with like-minded enterprises to make it a success,” concludes Vasilion.