Tell us about the business – how did it start?
MaxContact is a contact centre software company with a difference and the wildcard of the contact centre industry.
I started the business with Richard Coward and Barry Carter, who are still a part of MaxContact today. We worked together for ten years in the contact centre industry working with goliath tech companies. We were often working through the night with miles of cabling in data centres up and down the country. Eventually, we became frustrated with solution providers that constantly over-promised and under-delivered across features, support and resilience. So, you could say MaxContact was born out of frustration!
We knew we could better, enhancing the employee and customer experience with market-leading technology. Since then, we’ve become one of the fastest growing contact centre specialists in the UK with a 97% uptake rate against existing solutions. We were also recently ranked one of the top 50 fastest growing technology companies in the North. We handle over 100 million interactions each month for over 100 customers.
How are you different?
We help our customers interact with the right people at the right time, on communication channels that are right for them. This combined with the way we approach doing business is how we’re different. We’re completely transparent, work alongside our customers to plan the next features and improvements for the platform and we’re flexible – from contracts, licensing to service levels – our solutions are tailored to our customers.
Contact centre agents are the hidden backbone of society. From helping us with credit bills to making sure we get tickets to our favourite shows, staff up and down the country are meeting our every need. They need the right technology to make their jobs easier and to help them provide the best service possible to customers.
We’re leading the field in introducing new technology in this space and championing the hidden army of contact agents.
What challenges have you overcome? What have you learnt?
During the first lockdown our team grew substantially. We were building new features for our SaaS product and really driving the business forward. However, growing our team that fast remotely with a complex technology stack was a huge challenge.
Managing growth is one of the biggest challenges in business. You hear about other companies’ problems, but you don’t quite realise how big the challenge is. Going from 35 to 65 staff is hard enough normally; doing it during a lockdown was a different beast. We had to adapt our business culture to empower staff and devolve responsibility as well as adapting how we onboarded staff including building a whole new onboarding syllabus. We’ve learnt just how important it is to maintain our culture and our ways of working, as well as how to share knowledge effectively across our teams.
The impact of getting the right people is unmeasurable. It’s just as important to recruit on cultural fit and team dynamics as it is on capability. Capability should be a given. I’ve also learnt to promote people on value rather than ‘time served’. It’s a saying you hear a lot in sport – it’s not about age, if they are good enough, they are good enough. Reward them and promote them fast if they are a rising star.
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What are your plans for growth?
We have been very successful with our approach so far. We have to remain customer centric, with a true partnership approach. Agility is king and being able to build tailored features gives us the edge to win business. We’ll keep listening to our clients and building the features they want so we’re always adding value to the business.
Last year, we had a record year in sales. Our story resonates with customers – we want to build a leading technology business that puts people first. From our staff to the people who use our system day to day, and the customers who interact with their business. People working in customer-facing roles have difficult jobs, so the easier we can make their work the better.