How to choose a FastStats Partner?
Have you picked the "Apteco Marketing Suite (FastStats)" to be your marketing campaign and analytics platform of choice? If so, now you have to pick an Approved Apteco Partner to join you on the journey to better informed marketing. I'm sure you'll be asking yourself the question "How do I choose a FastStats Partner?". It's not easy, there are a fair few to choose from.
So, I've written this article to help inform you on what makes a great FastStats Partner. And why Adroit would be the right FastStats partner for you.
What makes a great FastStats Partner
Passionate and Experienced Staff
One of the most important aspects in choosing a FastStats partner is the quality of their staff.
Questions such as:
- Are they experienced with FastStats implementations?
- Have they used the FastStats software in real-world situations?
- Have they got experience with all the modules within FastStats? Modules such as PeopleStage, Cascade, Modeller, Segmentation, Excelsior, Orbit & Geo?
My advice would be to check the Apteco Partner listing page. Look for what accreditations your perspective partner has. For example, do they have team members who hold the FastStats Designer Accreditation?
Yet, accreditation isn't everything. Somebody could have a great deal of experience in the use of FastStats, but no accreditation. Ask your prospective partner to talk to the core members of the team. Find out about their experience of using FastStats in the real world. What problems have they solved? How did they go about it? What would they change next time?
Proven Track Record
Every November, Apteco hold their Annual User Conference. During the conference, users and partners compete for the "Best Use of Faststats Award". These awards offer the chance for users to show the innovative ways they have used FastStats. Entries range from the use of Peoplestage to send emails in the correct language. Changing the entire culture of the organisation towards data-driven decision making. Innovative reporting mechanisms to understand hidden trends. The list goes on and on.
The Apteco partner page shows whether a partner has made the shortlist. Yet not every great implementation gets entered into this competition. We haven't entered many of our FastStats based projects for a variety of reasons. My advice - Ask your prospective partner about every FastStats project they've delivered. This will help prove their track record in delivering robust FastStats systems.
Adroit have appeared in the “Best Use of the Apteco Marketing Suite” twice.
Find out more about our case study: International Fundraising Leadership Benchmarking Study
Find out more about our case study: Children's Society Implementation
This one is obvious. Does your prospective provider have the ability to train your team in the software? Software which is going to become mission critical in delivering your marketing strategy. Not all partners have the Apteco accreditation to train in the software. The Apteco partner page highlights which partners have the training accreditation.
Again, go beyond this. I wouldn't discount skilled and passionate staff because they're not accredited. But ask the question, can they be flexible with their training? Can they provide bespoke workshops on your data and system? Can they provide one-on-one tutoring to your super-users, answering complex problems?
Wide Sector Experience
Experience delivering systems and insight in many sectors is a sign of an effective FastStats partner. Wide experience allows partners to look at problems in different ways. Borrowing techniques and ideas from different contexts can help solve problems effectively.
Adroit have first hand experience of taking an idea from one sector, and applying it in another. During the Children's Society project, Adroit used B2B know-how to solve a B2C problem.
Read more about this project here.
Indeed, experience of delivering analysis and insight projects is also important. The implementation of FastStats isn't an IT project. It's a marketing project, delivered through an IT solution. You need a partner who can understand the marketing context, and structure and deliver analysis projects. A partner with these attributes will be more able to to leverage the power in your data. Thus avoid partners who are selling FastStats as an IT solution.
Enhanced Ongoing Support
Another important point to look for is the level of support that a partner can offer. Whatever training the partner provides, there will be questions raised at times. Indeed, if there aren’t, my suggestion is you aren’t pushing the software far enough! Does the partner have a robust process in place for handling support queries? Do they react and solve support questions with speed? Do they have a clear Service Level Agreement in place, which they beat in most cases?
Adroit offer a fully-staffed helpdesk, powered by industry standard software Zendesk. We also offer our clients free access to Adroit’s FastStats web portal. The portal allows our clients to download user manuals and guides. It also contains content and how-to guides written by Adroit's experienced FastStats consultants.
There you have it, some of the key things that make a good FastStats partner. I hope this has given you some guidance on choosing the right FastStats partner. If you'd like to talk about how we can help deliver and embed FastStats in your organisation, please get in touch.