I’ve been asked what a Technical Account Manager (TAM) does so I wanted to take the opportunity to illustrate it by walking through a standard day in the life. Before we can look at what a day in a life of a TAM is, I should provide some background in what is a TAM and who I am.
A TAM is part of the Customer Success Team here at Armory.
Customer Success at Armory consist of three phases:
- On-Boarding: This is the act of getting our customers to production and involves installation, configuration of the Spinnaker cluster. Solutions Architects are responsible for delivering this.
- Adoption: Once we have a production Spinnaker cluster, we need to convince teams to use it. Since we charge by user, the more users who adopt our software, the more license revenue we make. TAMs are responsible for Adoption.
- Satisfaction & Renewal: Customer satisfaction and engagement are key factors that drive customer renewal. TAMs develop strategic partnerships with customers and provide proactive approach to Customer Success.
TAMs serve as trusted advisors to Armory customers – they offer guidance, planning and oversight. They actively bind together Sales, Solution Architects, Customer Stakeholders, Product Management, Implementation Engineers and Support.
My name is Phebe Vickers. I am based out of Surrey, British Columbia, Canada. I started working at Armory in Technical Support on October 5th, 2020. I moved into the Technical Account Manager role on April 5, 2021. Prior to that I have worked a variety of tech jobs from Technical Engineer, Systems Engineer, Team Lead, Tech Support, and Developer.
I chose Armory because I wanted to get more experience and exposure to the DevOps field. When I read the website and found the belief of “empowering the edges” – giving power and information to everyone in the organization, not just to the people at the top – this really resonated with me. If you are curious as to the other reasons for joining Armory please check out our YouTube video:
My day starts with responding to customer emails and requests in their Slack channels. I review customer support cases adding necessary context where needed and reaching out internally to assist in obtaining the necessary resources to help with high priority items.
I prepare for weekly Sync calls. During these Sync calls, I review with the customer any concerns or questions they have, prioritize support tickets, review upcoming projects, and provide visibility into what our Product Team is working on. Notes for these calls are placed in Slack channels, Trello boards or whatever format the customer requests. Formats of these meetings are also dictated by customer need.
Part of my job involves learning how and when to use the plethora of tools we have available to analyze customer usage, trends and other data. Such data can then be presented at Quarterly Business reviews and/or Monthly Operational meetings with the customer.
I am responsible for several customer accounts so I iterate this aforementioned processes per customer. As you may imagine, some customers are high touch whereas some are a challenge to even get in contact with.
One of benefits, as well as one of the challenges, of working as a TAM is communicating the needs, concerns, and priorities of customers internally, while communicating the direction Armory is heading. Many times customers can become very frustrated. Part of my job is to hear the concerns and see where we, as a company, can assist and if not, being firm and resetting expectations – this, you can imagine, is easier said than done most times.
Over the past three months, I have gotten and taken the opportunity to develop the relationship with my customers to the point that I have a better understanding as to why they chose Armory, their successes, and their pain points. When I can help bridge communication and collaboration between Armory and a customer, I feel a sense of accomplishment as together we experience the value both organizations bring.
My appreciation has deepened for those who have done this role day in day out; to see, do and experience both the highs and lows of a customer is eye-opening. This role requires empathy for customers, understanding of the challenges faced by both the customer and Armory, strong advocacy and communication skills — to name a few. I am grateful for the opportunity to expand my experience and appreciation for what we do here at Armory.