A story of a traveling Lunie: Jerk Chicken, Banks & PlanetPress
Fatoumata Traoré or Fatou for short is part of the solution development team in the Professional Services department. They’re the ones helping you do things you can’t or rather not do. In this article, she shares with us her Objectif Lune experience.
Nancy: So what exactly do you do?
Fatou: I am part of the department that do custom solution for customers. So when the customer doesn’t know how to develop something or, if there is some limitations that he has or there is no plugin for he needs, we will do some custom programming.
With that being said, you don’t even need a lot of scripts for some things because we have a lot of plug-ins that already do it and the interface is really user-friendly.
Nancy: I know you travel a lot for your job, what brings you to go to customer’s offices?
Fatou: When we start a new project, we start the development in the office and then we need to do the implementation on the customer server. We have 2 ways of doing that, remotely, which is more common or we can go onsite and do an implementation there.
If the customers are in Montreal or close by, we’d prefer to see the customer onsite because we can meet the customers and have more interactions and get to know them better.
When customers are in another country or city, we can do it remotely but sometimes even customers are more comfortable with us being onsite for the implementation. Just in case they have any questions and also to give them more knowledge on the solution. Most of the time, there will be an IT guy that takes care of the solution when we leave. After the implementation, we give them 3 months of support. After that they will be put through to the regular support team. That’s why they need to be aware of the solution because if they have modifications to do or something, they can do that themselves. When we go onsite, we do a knowledge transfer to our contact there, which is very valuable.
Nancy: What has been your favorite implementation?
Fatou: All projects are different. That’s one of the reasons I love my job. All of the implementations are different. All customers have different needs. But one of my favorite implementations was the one I did in Jamaica. It was for a reseller and the end user was a bank. The solution was to design document statements and eliminate the printed copies of their documents so they can become more electronic. That was one aspect.
The other was to create a web interface. So each person from the office can look up any document created by PlanetPress. It is accessible anywhere. They just have to login and search for a document. It is sort of like the PlanetPress Search tool that we have but it’s on the web. You don’t need to install it on your computer so anybody can have access to it. Just login and choose the document you want to see or search by criteria and you will have a list of the document types from the dates specified. Searching documents is important for that bank because whenever customers request a document, there was a charge for the duplicate. Now the bank had an easy way to retrieve the document.
They were very interested in the suite. They first bought the suite for a very specific reason: to change from paper to digital and when I went there, they saw all the possibilities that can be done with the suite. They will definitely will be doing more. Probably they will start with redoing more documents. If you think about it, the workflow tool will allow to automate all the tasks that you would otherwise do manually daily. And you will save a lot of time.
Nancy: Very neat, not an implementation you always hear about. And Jamaica, cool. What that your favorite place to do an implementation?
Fatou: Actually it was. It was the country of my dreams. It has always been on the top of my list of countries I want to visit. I haven’t been because I wanted to take the time and didn’t want to just go for a week and stay in a resort. I did it for other countries like Cuba for the beach but this one, I wanted to wait for when I had the time and see how Jamaicans lived. What I liked about this project was that I got to meet locals and wasn’t in a resort meeting people from outside of Jamaica like people from Quebec! (laughs)
The customer was really really nice and he was very satisfied with the solution and I got a really warm welcome there. They were all very friendly. Usually when I go onsite, I see the customer for the day and then I get left on my own after the work day ended. And then go back to the office again the next morning. But with this one, after work, every night he would pick me up and go to a restaurant. We went karaoke and we did many other things. So even though I didn’t stay for a long time, I got to experience the Jamaican culture that I’ve always dreamed of. I got to do everything I wanted to do and got to ‘do’ Jamaica like I wanted.
Nancy: And one last question, what was your favorite thing to do there?
Fatou: Besides the food, the Bob Marley museum. I have a fascination with Bob Marley, that’s why I have these dreads. (laughs)