3 weeks ago

How not to roll out an Upgrade – a lesson from Expensify

This morning there was a message on my SalesForce Expenses tab, where Expensify and SalesForce work together. “We have updated our Salesforce integration” it read “and encourage you to log in directly using our website going forward – www.expensify.com.

I was looking forward to how my favorite expensing tool had made my life even easier, but what I found was quite the opposite:

The links on the pages were dead.

Expensify Support told me basically, that unless I was a paying for FinacialForce I could no longer integrate Expensify with SalesForce. And FinancialForce is much too expensive to implement for a small business like mine.

However, the worst was that there was no way back. I can not add accounts or opportunities to Expensify, since up to a few days ago SalesForce did all that, and it did it beautifully (actually I thought the update Expensify had touted would finally do away with the need to sync it with SalesForce every time a new opportunity was added.)

So today I have spent all day trying to find a way to keep my Expensify/SalesForce integration alive, but it seems like Expensify killed it.

With no warning.

No lead time for us to fix it. Worse, I can’t work it at all, because the link to SalesForce is broken.

So dear Expensify, next time, give us some notice. Just take a page out of SalesForce playbook – they send us emails and notices 6 months ahead of a change and show us how to implement or adjust for them.

Right now, please at least create a video/blog page that walks us through step by step how to reverse and reassign all accounts, opportunities, etc – basically how to do everything by hand that SalesForce used to do. If there is an automatic way to import the hundreds of accounts and opportunities, please let us know, if not, please create one. Now.

In the future (hopefully the very near future) I wish you would allow us to keep the integration that worked just a few days ago. There’s no way it can be hard to give us that option again.

As for me, it looks like I will be spending another day wasting time to figure out how to use Expensify in my small business. I think I can also downgrade back to the team level from my corporate level since the only reason I paid the extra money was for the SalesForce integration.
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I’ve been singing Expensify’s praises to many small business owners, when I speak at conferences like WordCamp Miami, or when I write about small business efficiency on this blog and even lauded Expensify’s SalesForce Integration as late as last Friday, when I was flown to Dallas to talk about running an efficient Small Business at the Dallas Entrepreneur Center.

I love(d) the ability to pull up a SalesForce account in Expensify and seeing only opportunities that relate to that account.

It made my life as a sole entrepreneur so much simpler.

But this whole “update” has left me with a very bitter taste in my mouth.

 

 

However, we can always learn from these kinds of disasters, right?

How do you communicate with your clients when you change a service that they come to rely on?

Hopefully, you give them some time to implement or prepare for the change and don’t just drop it on them like Expensify did.

When do you consult your clients and ensure ways to mitigate any changes to their business processes.

Hopefully, you listen to their concerns and work out a solution or at least some how-to guidelines to make their lives easier, not more convoluted and difficult, like Expensify did.

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