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Lessons From The Water Cooler

Lessons From The Water Cooler

We’ve recently partnered with Capterra, a website platform that helps businesses compare and find software solutions they need. Around the time of our mid-year check-in, Vivian, our wonderful rep at Capterra, reminded us that we should maybe think about about getting some reviews of our software up there.

Reviews help when it comes to building credibility; especially on Capterra where prospective customers are actively online and browsing for options.”

-Vivian, our support extraordinaire at Capterra

It all made sense. Besides, we already had such glowing reviews on our internal CMS that it made sense to get those out onto the front-facing web. We didn’t need much more convincing once she reminded us also this was all a service offered free as part of our partnership.

We were presented with two sets of options as to how we could go about doing this: we could provide them with an email list of our customers and have them hit those contacts for us, or have them provide us with a link to send out personally to our customers. Both ways there would be an incentive to fill out the reviews in the form of a $10 gift card.


“We do things a little differently around here.”

From my standpoint of having to organize this entire operation, the temptation to choose option #1 and have our rep at Capterra do everything for me was pretty big. But I did the smart thing of going to our support team first and asking them for their opinion on what the best way to go about this was.

“Definitely option #2.” said Alexis, our Customer Relations Manager, “We do things a little differently around here. Every client is appointed their own support rep that they can build a personal relationship with from day one. Most companies tackle tickets by teams on an as-they-come-in basis, but that’s just not how we do things around here.”

I knew going into it what the answer would be, and it all clicked after hearing from Alexis about our support culture about how customer happiness ratings are constantly in the 95th percentile.

See what we mean? via Intercom

What Customers Love about Our Support

What differentiates an average support team from a great one is how invested the staff are in the success and happiness of the customers. Here at OpenWater, we take that concept a step further to ensure we know across all teams who our customers are and what they need from OpenWater – because that commitment is what creates belief and trust in the product. Our support staff build deep relationships with their customers. Clients are more than just a stream of tickets in a queue; they’re considered important colleagues.

As the saying goes, give a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he eats every day. The instructional video Alexis provided was beyond helpful. Now I know how to handle the functions I had questions about and have a link to a custom video as a reminder in the future.

– Evelyn Schmidt, Penton Media Admin, on her support rep Alexis

Of course, that can’t happen without a committed support staff that can always be counted on to ensure that customer needs are met to the fullest and queries are resolved as quickly as possible. For that, we have the support-water-cooler, AKA lacroix fridge. It’s the most active Slack Channel here at OpenWater where our support staff – both in-house and remote – can actively toss out questions, seek for help, and sometimes post pictures of their cats.

Daniel quickly assisted me in a balloting/judging error and it was rectified in minutes via email; then, we held another quick conversation that he set up via GoToMeeting which resulted in a second issue being resolved. All within a period of 10 minutes! Daniel provided outstanding service and commitment to the customer and it is appreciated.

– Barb Kowal, College Sports Information Directors of America Admin on her support rep Daniel

Heard It Through the Water Cooler

If there’s anything that differentiates customers and buyers in the 21st century, it is the amount of options they have when it comes to their product solution choices. With such a broad range of products out there and how easy they have access to them, brands that go back to the basics to check off core properties of customer happiness and success are going to be the ones that win.

The way we do things around here makes checking that box dead easy. The personal relationships our support team form with their admins make it easier to reach solutions faster, and if anyone on the team is left feeling stumped in any way – that’s what the Slack channel is for! At the end of an OpenWater day, customers are left happy, support reps are left fulfilled – because they know they have had a personal role in helping their admins reach a solution.


That’s the OpenWater way!



Annika is a Content Marketing Associate at OpenWater, where she helps our clients better navigate the challenges they may encounter in the associations world. She has a passion in helping organizations and nonprofits share their stories with the growing technology sector. When she's not typing away on her keyboard in our Arlington HQ, she's steering boats on the Potomac River or running the streets of DC.

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