Earlier this week, we announced our plan to relaunch our ServiceMax Community on a new platform: Lithium. Nicole Guzzo shared some exciting project details, like how we’re opening up our discussion forums to the public and how we reorganized our structure to better enable solutions and to better segment topics.
Last blog, Nicole focused on the customer feedback we have gathered. That was just one stop in our journey. Today, I want to highlight a little more of our history, how we have collaborated with customers in the past, and how we have gotten to where we are today.
We launched our ServiceMax Community in 2014. Over the next few years we added content around events, user groups, the Ideas Exchange, NPS Updates, Training Videos, and more. And our users played a huge part in building up a great library of questions, answers, suggestions, best practices, and things to look out for.
In 2017, Jive-X (Jive’s external community business) was acquired by Lithium, a software company that helps businesses connect with their customers on social media and digital channels. You can read more about the acquisition here.
What did this mean for ServiceMax?
There wasn’t an immediate change to our platform or our support. The Lithium/Jive-x team continued to support our customer community, and we remained focused on building programs, content and new ways to continuously improve the customer experience.
We eventually learned that Jive-X would no longer be innovating on their platform. This means that the team would continue to provide bug fixes and maintenance, but there would be no new features.
In their Jive-x Customer Welcome FAQ, they shared:
“To reiterate what we’ve been saying publicly since the acquisition announcement, the Jive-x platform will continue to be supported by Lithium for as long as customers choose to remain on it. While we are not planning to develop new features for Jive-x, we will continue to maintain the platform to ensure it remains a viable product for our customers.”
This wasn’t going to be enough for us. We invest in our customer’s experience, and part of that is providing a solid support tool like the ServiceMax Community.
According to Socialnomics, 78% of customers trust their peers, while 14% trust advertising. The point of the ServiceMax Community is to give our customers a place where they can exchange advice and stories and support one another. We couldn’t provide first-class community experience for customers to connect if we were on a platform that was no longer evolving.
As I shared in my last blog, Lithium’s ability to address the features our customers wanted to see was key in why we chose their platform. The company also has a long roadmap ahead of them, so our users think of new ideas and ways to improve our community, Lithium will be doing the same.
Another key factor was how Lithium could migrate all our users and their content over to the new platform without any major issues. Potentially losing five years of content was not an option for us or our users! Your activity since 2014 will be in the new platform.
Other reasons include:
- The modern look and feel, and how easy it is to configure
- Their focus on external communities
- The plethora of knowledge articles and best practice pieces available
- The success of their own customer community
Serving Your Company
Along the way, we decided that this community relaunch was the perfect time to introduce a new theme. We know the purpose of our community is to discuss and connect on all things field service and asset service management. Users were asking for more challenges, more fun, more genuine connections across your peers. In response, we wanted a theme to tie together our gamification, our emails, our community spirit, and off-topic discussions and challenges.
We are very excited to share with you the theme for our relaunched community:
The ServiceMax Community Kitchen: The perfect recipe for field service success.
A lot of thought went into this theme and we considered others like traveling or sporting events, but we truly wanted to be original and give our users something fresh.
The idea here behind the theme is whether you’re in the field, or in the kitchen, there is so much that goes on behind the scenes to get to that final, flawless product: a working asset, an amazing meal. Your teams are working hard, and we want to provide a true community where you have peers you can rely on to support them and your customers.
Check out our community video below to see how we blended the field service kitchen together.
We’re debuting our relaunched community on the first week of March. That means we'll need to set the community to read-only mode for a brief period while we migrate users, content, and data. The community will be in read-only mode from March 1st at 12 PM PST until March 5th, when we launch the new platform.
We’re very excited for this new chapter, and we hope you are too.
More details are coming next week in our Community Migration FAQ blog post!
Please share your thoughts and feedback in the comments!