Meet Merve: GoCardless’ first pre-sales solutions engineer
Before Merve, GoCardless technical specialists sat firmly in the ‘design and build’ corner, making sure we continue to deliver a first class product to customers. But as more and more customers experiment with our API to build their own integrations, we soon realised we needed customer-facing technical specialists who could support the sales and partnerships teams, and help our customers to envisage and plan their own Gocardless integrations. Merve Aygin joined GoCardless in March this year, as our first pre-sales solutions engineer.
What is a solutions engineer?
When a customer is considering signing up to GoCardless, I act as the primary technical lead. My job is to articulate complex technical topics and show them the value of our product by running demos. I also run integration review sessions to help them design and build a best-in-class integration with us.
Doing the proof-of-concept work in the beginning can be tricky, especially if you’re working with a complicated product and need to build a prototype for a customer. But the GoCardless product is beautifully-simple! And since we have a sandbox account that’s free to use, customers can play around with our API themselves, with my support and guidance.
Why do we need them?
Pre-sales technical specialists are key to understanding customers' needs on the technical aspects and laying the foundations for a successful integration. We also make sure that the handover between the Sales and Customer Success teams is smooth.
In the past, GoCardless sold only our dashboard, which is a prebuilt self-serve tool. Now, we have more and more customers who want to use our fantastic API to build their own integrations. This can make the sales cycle more complex - and that’s where solutions engineers come in: we free up the Sales team to focus on other priorities, rather than them having to learn the technology inside out.
How does it benefit customers?
By doing technical discovery with the customer, I can help them to design their API integration. They’ll get a good understanding of how the product works and how it will help them with the issues that they're experiencing. They receive full support on their technical queries from day one - even before they sign a contract. Giving them clarity around how they will use GoCardless, gives them the confidence on the quality of their integration and the project deadlines.
What do you get up to on a typical day?
I help account managers with technical queries they receive from their prospects, run demos for potential customers and help them with designing a best-in-class API integration with GoCardless. I also build new demo environments, based on the questions that I receive most frequently.
As well as working with the Sales teams, I work with Product Marketing to record demos and videos and with our Product team, if, for example, I spot feature gaps during my communication with customers.
What are you working on at the moment?
We are helping one of the fastest growing green energy suppliers in the UK to automate their Direct Debit and integrate it into their systems more effectively. It is very exciting for us because they are growing rapidly and could quickly be one of our biggest merchants. They were also the main sponsors of big cycling races this year so they have a special place in my heart!
What do you like most about working at GoCardless?
The people! Being surrounded by so many enthusiastic people every day keeps me motivated. Everyone towards the same goals, so I get immediate support when I need it.
Most memorable moment since joining?
I remember the day I met Hiroki, the founder of GoCardless. He is a very dedicated and inspirational person and I felt very lucky to be working with him.