Client Spotlight Series: C1
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That’s the beauty of Creed. It’s the fact that you all work together every day and you understand everything from brand guidelines and developing consistency through your web presence or whatever else, to the deeply technical ability to help figure out how we’re gonna actually make something work. And that’s been, I think, truly where the value derives. There’s really great talent. You don’t stay with people who can’t get the work done.
Below is the edited transcript of the video. Since recording ConvergeOne rebranded as C1.
SARAH: All right, this is another installment of a Creed Client Spotlight Series, and it is my absolute pleasure to have Chris Beck from C1 joining me today. Chris, if you would be so kind as to just give a little bit of information about your role within C1, and maybe illustrate some of the projects we’ve partnered on over the years where we’ve been able to come alongside you and your team.
CHRIS: Absolutely. So here at C1, I joined eight years ago, and I came on to be a product owner of some of our internal intellectual property called OnGuard. And you know, the interesting part is my introduction to Creed came about a month and a half later, when I got asked to take over a project for someone else in the company to build a new customer portal for our managed services customers to be able to create tickets. No one allowed us to change the backend, however, so the task became, we had to disassemble enough of the existing portal so that we could interact with it from a new portal. And Creed did that for me, soup to nuts, did that for us. And from there two things occurred that have been almost traditions now at C1, the first we’ve worked with Creed ever since. And the second one is that we’ve never lived down having to deal with that portal. And it brings us plenty of work that normally would be handled by somebody else in the company, but for whatever reason they decide, “oh, I bet Chris can do that.” And so I feel a little bit like “Mikey” in the in the Life Cereal commercials. For those of you old enough to remember them.
SARAH: Well, Chris, we’ve really valued the partnership and certainly the ability to work alongside you, but also serve as an extension of the C1 team.
Could you share just a little bit about what that experience is like? Obviously you work with our amazing developers, and also project managers, and we’ve done some design and UX work along the way as well. Could you talk a little bit about that?
CHRIS: It’s interesting because I think a lot of times you’ll think of a partner in a specific area, or niche, right? And, I would argue that in Creed’s sector, if you will, most people say, oh, they’re web developers. And I would bet arguably most of our competitors have a bunch of programmers and PMs.
One of the things that I always thought was unique about what Creed did is that you actually had everything in-house to build a [user interface] UI. You had UX designers, you had business consultants when necessary that could go understand what the goal was, and then feed that to the UX designer and provide inspiration sites and stuff like that. And then you have the graphic designer who could take that and actually make a wire frame. And obviously you have the developers who can then take it and go make it work. I haven’t found anyone else who actually has all of that in-house, but at a size where you’re not dealing with a behemoth. I’m sure I could go to Ernst and Young’s consulting side or the such, and they have all these people, but do they work together every day? I don’t think they do. That’s the beauty of Creed. It’s the fact that you all work together every day and you understand everything from brand guidelines and developing consistency through your web presence or whatever else, to the deeply technical ability to help figure out how we’re gonna actually make something work. And that’s been, I think, truly where the value derives. There’s really great talent. You don’t stay with people who can’t get the work done. So obviously there’s some givens: there’s real talent, there’s an ability to deliver, there’s a real consciousness as we’re going on seven years now where it’s just kind of been Chris’s [dedicated] team in a way. They stay really connected about what’s the actual priority right now. It’s not just what’s next on a backlog. It just works. At times we’ve taken things out that we thought were gonna be the biggest thing to do in a given year. Things changed. I think that’s the other part, is the fact that there is flexibility to do that. And I’ve always said that in many ways, I just think of Creed as a my third programming team. I’ve got two internally now, and I’ve got Creed. And as things have changed, you’ve come with us.
SARAH: Absolutely, and thank you for that. I’m humbled by your kind words, and I know our team is so grateful to have the opportunity to be that extension of your already amazing team of engineers and programmers. I know in a few instances, we’ve also taken on what seems like the impossible and made it possible too, Chris, as I know you know what I’m talking about. And so we’ve been thrilled as a team of expert solutioners working alongside of your team, to make the impossible possible. I’m really proud of that.
CHRIS: We’ve done some incredible things. We have about 14 websites that we’ve built together now. Maybe variations on a theme, but, we keep advancing them. We keep adding features to them. We just settled on a methodology for handling authentication where we can offer single sign on for our clients back to their identity providers and things like that. So we’re working through that change together. Some of these websites started literally eight years ago and in fact that website’s coming back. When we changed our ticketing system that we used with managed services, we chose to use the ticketing system’s customer portal and site. And there were celebrations in some ways because the backend that the website we had built together… to say it was a struggle, I think would be kind. We’re like, we finally don’t have to take care of that, that ancient, ancient thing with no documentation and the such and we shut it down. The funny part is customers hate how it looks. The new one. They’re not accepting of it. And so while the backend is completely different, we’re bringing back that look and feel. And I think of all the things that we’ve done together, I think that project with the way we set what OnGuard was gonna look like, what our, if you will, online brand was gonna be around our portal presences and how we built things, it still endures eight years later.
CHRIS: Yeah. And it’s, that’s really an accomplishment.
SARAH: I agree.
CHRIS: I mean, we’re changing colors for the first time because today C1 announced today that we’re rebranding
SARAH: Yes, congratulations,
CHRIS: New logos, new colors, things like that. And we’ll be working through that. And so you think you, we’ve rebranded yet all we’re doing is changing colors, and logos, or refreshing the design. It speaks to how deeply the issues were understood at the time, and what the value was gonna be 6, 12, 18 or more months later to having done that work.
SARAH: I thank you again, Chris, for taking time to talk through this with me. And we are so grateful to have you as a partner and the larger C1 family that we get to work with so closely. Thank you for your business, thank you for your ongoing partnership and thank you for joining me today. This quick series. Thanks.
SARAH: Any other final thoughts?
CHRIS: Nice. Thanks to Creed for all the great work over the years. We really appreciate all that you do for us.
SARAH: Our pleasure. Thank you. Take care.
Explore the full C1 website here.