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Fireside chat with William Stevenson, Founder&COO Onboard.io

Who is William Stevenson?

William Stevenson is a career software startup builder and operator. A challenge chaser and a problem solver. A husband, and a father to three amazing girls.

What’s the story behind Onboard.io?

I’ve built and managed Customer Success and Onboarding teams for the past decade. In that time, I struggled with the fact that I had to use systems that weren’t designed for customer onboarding. I was piecing together project management software, google sheets, and a CRM, while every other department was using software built for them. I couldn’t believe there wasn’t a solution for one of the most, if not the most, crucial client interactions – getting the client up and running.
The final straw was during the year leading up to the creation of Onboard. I was consulting for several high growth SaaS companies and they all had the same problem. Their onboarding process was really inefficient internally and on top of that their customers were having a less than ideal experience. At that point, it was clear to me that most companies were struggling with customer onboarding, even if they didn’t know they were struggling. That was when I knew we had to solve the problem.

What was the most difficult part of your experience in the early beginnings?

I think my challenge is the same as every passionate founder. When you first start the company and you have a small team, you want to solve the world’s challenges in the first week. It’s true what they say, Rome wasn’t built in a day.
Early in my career I learned to “focus on the few things that matter most” and I think that lesson has paid dividends. We knew we had a much larger vision from the start, but as a team we also knew we had to first focus on the biggest impact opportunity, which was building a tool that Customer Success teams would love to use. From there we started expanding to solve management and administrative challenges.

What are you most proud of regarding your business?

I’m super proud that we’re making a real impact in a young space (customer onboarding) and we have the opportunity to help it mature quickly. We’re getting really great feedback and traction at this point, which wouldn’t be possible without our awesome team.

What is your vision for the future of Onboard.io?

Back to the lesson I learned early in my career, right now we’re focused :). By the end of 2021 we hope to be the clear software choice in the customer onboarding space. I think we have a really good chance of hitting that goal.

What’s your advice for the businesses that are trying to adapt to this economic climate?

It’s a really interesting time in business. The markets are doing really well and at the same time we are (hopefully) exiting one of the scariest times in the last century. The big question is have we even begun to see the ripple effects yet? I think we’re all hopeful that it’s only positive from here, but I also think everyone is cautiously optimistic. My advice would be to keep moving forward and operate within boundaries. I’m not saying don’t take chances, but take an extra minute to think about the potential outcomes of the chances you’re taking.

Please name a few technologies which have the greatest impact on your business.

We’re big Hubspot users for everything from CRM to Marketing Automation to Customer Service. Also, Zapier has allowed us to expand our customer base by offering integrations that we otherwise would not be able to offer out of the gate.

What books do you have on your nightstand?

Being in the Onboarding space, I’m really excited about Donna Weber’s new book coming out “Onboarding Matters”. That one will be on my nightstand soon.
Outside of business books I really enjoy reading about people who defy the odds. I just bought David Goggins “Can’t Hurt Me” audiobook for inspiration while I cycle.

Because of the current economic climate our publication has started a series of discussions with professional individuals meant to engage our readers with relevant companies and their representatives in order to discuss their involvement, what challenges they have had in the past and what they are looking forward to in the future. This sequence aims to present a series of experiences, recent developments, changes and downsides in terms of their business areas, as well as their goals, values, career history, the high-impact success outcomes and achievements.

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