In our new “Dedication to Customer Success” series, we have introduced you to Craig Walford, Desire2Learn’s new Vice President, Services & Support and Paul Kleinknecht, our new Director, Account Management. Today, we sat down with James Beer, who recently joined Desire2Learn as Vice President, SaaS and IT.
James has spent over 15 years managing customer-facing, mission-critical computing environments, with deep expertise in co-location, networks, IT management systems, and cloud computing. James is looking forward to applying this knowledge to his work at Desire2Learn to deliver stellar client success.
Learning Insights: What is your main goal as VP of the SaaS & IT team at Desire2Learn?
James: A successful client experience comes from many different sources that customers benefit from directly – strong service and support and a committed customer relationship, for example – but it also comes from robust system performance and a powerful technology infrastructure running behind the scenes that customers might not see every day. My goal is to provide clients with the best possible, hassle-free experience, by ensuring the technology works seamlessly in the background. A world-class system makes all the difference to the customer experience.
Learning Insights: What improvements are you making to ensure the Desire2Learn system continues to runs smoothly?
James: We have already deployed and are in the process of developing many new enhancements to our system infrastructure that will improve performance and further enhance the reliability of the platform:
- We’re implementing changes to networking and IP addresses to facilitate broader network peering and customer connectivity.
- We’ve established a 24×7, state-of-the-art Network Operations Centre that will enable us to constantly monitor our SaaS infrastructure. With this addition, we’re detecting and fixing any faults in an even more timely fashion. This will continue to advance the performance and reliability of the Desire2Learn platform.
- Along the same lines, we’re also implementing a new help desk solution with an integrated customer portal and knowledge database.
- We’re expanding our data centers and points of presence to provide better regional service and disaster recovery capabilities. With better content distribution, there will be less network latency as well. All of these centers are highly resilient with reliable power, HVAC, Internet, and security.
- New best-of-breed hardware technology in the areas of servers, network and storage systems are being installed, all of which will enhance our reliability and scalability.
- By using multi-tenant platforms, we’ll be leveraging economies of scale, and we are better managing changes and incidents with our ITIL-based operational practices.
Learning Insights: How will all of these changes impact the Desire2Learn user experience?
James: Each one of these changes builds upon the existing robustness and reliability of the Desire2Learn platform. The user-friendly experience that clients have come to expect from us will continue, but we’ll be able to respond to issues more quickly and pre-empt problems before they have an impact on the user. The system is being architected to support high customer availability and performance and these enhancements will enable us to continue that reliable level of service with more ease and scalability. In other words, a better user experience all around.
Learning Insights: Will we see you at FUSION?
James: Yes, counting down the days until San Diego! I’m looking forward to meeting clients so feel free to flag me down. I’ll also be at the Cloud and Hosting Booth in the Services area so please drop by to discuss these or other related topics.