We sat down with one of our own to show you
In continuing our series covering the roles at WorkTango, we interviewed Client Success Manager (CSM) Julia Latacka who has been with WorkTango for a year. She covers why she joined the team, what the best and worst parts of her job are, a pleasant but unexpected surprise, why WorkTango is different from other organizations and much more.
Keep reading to see how she would describe her experience thus far.
What initially brought you to WorkTango?
Julia had a bit of a different recruitment experience than most. She was already familiar with Chief Engagement Officer, Rob Catalano from previous conferences and she didn’t directly apply to the CSM position, but was instead reached out to see if she was interested and was hired shortly after.
“I guess what initially brought me to WorkTango was the familiarity with both the leadership team and the industry. The executive team is well-known in the HR technology space and I was familiar with WorkTango’s business from meetups and conferences. I like the HR technology space and the leadership team, but I guess the tipping point was the role itself.”
“As a CSM at WorkTango, you help organizations listen to the voice of their employees and help drive actions that result in real change. That’s immensely valuable. We work almost as consultants, helping CHRO’s, HR Leaders, and VPs interpret their survey data to make important business and people decisions. That really excited me and prompted me to accept the offer. It’s been all that and more so far.”
What does an average day look like?
Each day at WorkTango begins with a quick morning meeting in which we cover wins (small and large), questions, comments, recognitions, and red flags so that all departments can execute the day’s tasks efficiently. It also opens the floor for cross-functional collaboration and project alignment.
“Every day presents a new set of challenges and it varies so much it’s tough to say exactly what ‘average’ is. Most days consist of a mix of client meetings (these can include kick-off or implementation calls, training, etc.), client support, and advisory. We advise clients on survey strategy and survey design, making sure they are asking scientifically validated questions and can navigate the platform properly, which can be time-consuming.”
Each CSM is responsible for leading and being the main point of contact for a list of clients. By having one person spearhead the account, the CSM can get to know the client’s business and use-cases in order to provide higher quality services than to an unfamiliar business. Of course, this is not a one-size-fits-all approach as different clients have different needs.
“It all depends on the needs of the client. Large enterprise accounts often have more specifications, approvals, complexities overall and thus require more attention. Smaller clients often have less complex needs and therefore don’t require as much support. I will add that some clients are tech-savvy and others aren’t at all. HR isn’t the most data-focused department, so often we help HR leaders to interpret their data and understand how to use it to drive action. “
“This can be facilitated in a number of ways; one of which is a simple follow-up session, or it can take the form of a more in-depth executive presentation where we go through all the findings of the survey and present results and recommended actions to a client’s senior leadership team.”
What is the best part of your job?
Although there are many aspects of being a CSM that she enjoys, Julia said there’s not one part that’s the best, but a few things combined that make up the best part of her job.
“The best part of my job is being able to build on my existing skills and the challenge of building new ones. Specifically, I enjoy the relationships that come with managing customers and their accounts, analyzing the data, and presenting decks to executives. It’s really cool to see all the work summarized and presented to a leader and watch their eyes light up. As a CSM, I get to see first-hand the result of lots of hard work.”
At WorkTango, we pride ourselves on providing software AND a service. Our solution doesn’t end once you are up to speed with our platform, we want to be sure you are squeezing all the juice out of the survey fruit, in order for your employees to enjoy the sweetest drink. Julia, along with the entire Customer Success team helps you to squeeze each drop out of us, and it’s the reason why they wear many hats – it’s how we can authentically serve our customers.
“It’s a good mix of all the things I enjoy, while also providing me with a lot of variety. That variety allows me to build my career and explore areas that I am interested in. There’s little resistance for you to implement what you think would improve our offering, and there are always interesting projects for me to work on. I’m never bored, in fact, I’m quite busy and I like it.”
What are some of the challenges?
Not only did Julia cover what the challenges are in being a CSM, but also went on to discuss the further effects of remote work and how in some ways, it continues to be a hurdle.
“Meeting the needs of all of the clients I am responsible for can be a challenge. We can’t control our customers and at certain times of the year, many organizations are launching surveys at the same time (think beginning/end of the year or quarterly). It just makes for a busy time and lots of back-and-forth support to ensure everyone launches on time.”
“Another challenge that I have faced only recently is the difficulty in collaborating and communicating with other team members as we grow and onboard in a virtual environment. Some of the people I work with I have never met in person, which is weird for me since I am fairly social and enjoy the benefits of working side by side. It also takes a lot more time to get to know someone and figure out the best way to work together when remote. But it’s the reality we find ourselves in now.”
We are always on the lookout for great hires that live our passion statement to ‘improve (work) lives’. If you or anyone you know would be a good fit, apply to our open positions here.
What traits make a good Client Success team member?
Client success is centered around… you guessed it! The success of the client. More specifically, at WorkTango being a CSM means dealing with all client needs from the moment they sign on the dotted line, to the de-brief of their final survey initiative. This may seem straightforward at first, but many overlook the complexity that comes with managing clients and ensuring their success, especially large enterprise ones.
“One skill that comes to mind immediately is communication. You need to be able to understand the client’s needs, ask good questions, answer their questions and guide them through navigating the platform, and that’s just for a single client! Time management and project management are also needed to be able to successfully launch new clients while having a handle on where each existing client is with their survey initiatives. You need to be organized, knowledgeable about HR, and able to communicate at a high level to be successful in a Client Success role.”
Not only are the traits that Julia mentioned essential to a successful CSM, but they should also possess intermediate technical skills to perform data analysis, analyze survey methodology and interpret survey results for the client (if needed). Data is your friend when measuring and communicating the success of a survey initiative. You need to be able to paint a picture of what the results tell… think more in the context of an amateur art major rather than a da Vinci.
How does WorkTango differ from other companies you have worked at?
“The culture is amazing; we live our virtues and we’re collaborative. In terms of culture, leadership is flexible and willing to listen to whatever you have to say (both positive and negative). At previous jobs, I’ve brought up suggestions to improve certain things and it’s gone nowhere – that discouraging. Here, you get support from senior leadership and I feel valued for bringing my suggestions up, even if it doesn’t revolutionize the business. I feel like leadership wants to help YOU, while in other organizations it’s flipped.”
At WorkTango, we have virtues instead of values, as values are what you believe, whereas virtues are what you do. We strive to act on our virtues aligned to our passion: improve (work) lives.
“Our virtues here are a big differentiator. I’ve never felt so comfortable to be, or to bring my true self to work. It’s nice to work in a safe space where you are comfortable to voice your opinion and show up entirely as yourself, without the fear of negative consequences. The last thing I will touch on is how collaborative and supportive the team is. Being able to work with such a smart group of people makes part of my job a lot easier and at the end of the day, puts out much better work than if I did it alone. The team also values work-life balance which again, I didn’t get in other positions. We would work 12-hour days with no recognition, but that could not be further from the truth here.”
What was an unexpected, pleasant surprise you discovered while on the job?
Although many do their best to try and portray their organization as the best place to work, it’s subjective and quite difficult to get a true sense of what it’s like without having worked there yourself. This question was intended to provide further transparency into our organization.
“I was pleasantly surprised to see how well the team works together, and how safe the space is to make mistakes. When you do make a mistake, which happens to everyone, the team is there to support you and help you learn from it. I truly don’t feel bad about making mistakes. I’m not encouraged to make them, but when it does happen, I learn and am wiser as a result.”
“The team also works really well together because there is a mutual trust that you will get the job done, and you have the autonomy to do it the best way you see fit. There’s no micromanaging here. Being able to have autonomy over your role, make mistakes and learn from a trifecta of pleasant surprises I’ve found working here.”
At WorkTango, we are deeply committed to ensuring that our policies, practices, and systems are barrier-free, promote diversity and inclusion and create equal access opportunities for everyone. We even wrote a guide on diversity, equity and inclusion, which is a topic that we are passionate about internally and externally with our clients!
If you are considering joining, don’t hesitate to throw your hat in the ring and join this amazing team! The most up-to-date job postings can be found here.
Check out our guides on workplace culture, employee engagement, and employee surveys. Learn about every aspect of a successful employee voice initiative!
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