How to Solve Communication Gaps Between Developers & Customer Support

In a prior life, before entering the world of software development, I worked for WeddingWire.com on the Customer Success Team. I had many responsibilities related to WeddingWire’s paying advertisers, one of which was reporting site bugs and/or client product feedback to the development team. From that experience, I know that there can be significant gaps in the communication between a development team and a service team at tech companies. Though easier said than done, I believe development teams and developers themselves should make a greater effort to proactively minimize those gaps, and I want to present an example scenario in which WeddingWire’s development team could have helped me perform my job more effectively. Have you seen the skit where a developer is asked to “draw seven red lines, all of them strictly perpendicular, some with green ink and some with transparent ink”? (If not, check it out ). The point is though, it can be really challenging for developers to work with folks who don’t develop. Be it a product manager, customer service rep, or even company leadership, sometimes people simply don’t know what they’re asking for. Still, I find that sketch particularly humorous because, having been on the other side of the equation, I know it only paints half the picture. Here’s the thing guys and gals: it ain’t rainbows and sunshine working with developers either. As a Customer Success Manager at WeddingWire, the hardest part of my job was handling angry or upset clients. You’d be amazed what sets people off, like not being able to add custom music to a slideshow tool (hello, copyright infringement!), or a competitor showing up above them in search results (the competitor is paying five times what you’re paying to get that placement, so...). These complaints can be handled fairly easily, but...
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Two Instructors Who Change Lives Through Coding

I just moved to Denver from Boston... I was previously in engineering positions and I’m now an instructor on the Front-End Team and also the Technical Lead. Before Turing, I was working at the New York Times and also at Mozilla doing engineering work. I previously worked in media very frequently. I was a journalism major so I really liked working in industries that were a little bit outside of tech. One thing that’s great about being an engineer is that every industry needs them. The most recent project that I worked on at my last position at Mozilla was really exciting…. We were starting to build some applications and some internal tooling for doing A/B testing in Firefox, the browser. We would have developers who were using Firefox regularly and would sign-up for the experimental features. It’s similar to people using Chrome: they might use Canary to get the latest, most experimental features. And when we had people sign up for these, we wanted to A/B test for new features and new experiments for them. So we had to set up a lot of internal tooling that would actually push these experiments to particular users. Getting that little sample set of users that we wanted - to push these experiments to and making sure we blocked out the other ones - was pretty challenging. We definitely sent out a bunch of experiments that maybe we shouldn’t have - haha! But they were really interesting problems we were trying to solve with that project. But my position at Mozilla was a little bit too meta: being at a tech company working on tech. I really found the education aspect of Turing really appealing. I’ve been teaching for just a couple months now and a couple things that stand out to...
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