Executive InterviewsLatest

Meet Jon Tobin at Userback – Build Better Software With Visual Customer Feedback 

Today we have selected Jon Tobin to take his interview. He is the Co-founder of Userback.

First of all, how are you and your team doing in these COVID-19 times?

Like many companies, we have had to adapt to deal with Covid. But fortunately, it hasn’t significantly impacted our business operations because we’ve always been a remote company. We work in the software industry, so we’re used to working with change, and I’m proud of how our team just took things in their stride and continues to support each other.

Tell us about you, your career, how you founded or joined this company?

My name is Jon Tobin, and I’m the Co-founder and Head of Growth at Userback. I’ve been working in the software industry for over a decade, and I guess you could say I love technology. I’m passionate about how technology can be used to solve real-world problems. In a previous role where I dealt with web agencies and software designers, I saw firsthand how there was no easy way for these companies to collaborate and collect feedback from their users efficiently. That’s when Userback was born. 

How does your company innovate?

We’re on a mission to help software teams build better products that are driven by user feedback. While collecting customer feedback is by no means a new concept, we’re innovating and changing the game by making it easy for software users to provide feedback visually with annotated screenshots and video recordings. By using our tech, software companies can collect better quality feedback that helps them resolve bugs faster, understand what their customers want, and collaborate more efficiently within their teams.

How the Coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?

We’re an agile software company, so it’s in our DNA to respond fast and pivot when required. As soon as it became clear that Covid was here to stay, we reviewed our product roadmap and asked ourselves what we could do to help our customers adapt to the changing landscape. We realized that workplaces were transitioning to remote operations, so we prioritized developing new collaboration features in our product to make that transition easier for them. 

Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?

We’re a fast-growing tech startup, so there are always difficult decisions to make. It’s just the nature of things. At the core of it, though, we’re a feedback company, and I guess the lesson that we learned, and the one I would encourage everyone to take on board, is that you 100% need to listen to your customers. I don’t just mean asking for feedback.

I mean listening to your customer’s feedback and understanding how you can exceed their expectations and help solve their problems in new ways that are better than your competitors. Cause I think if you can do that, then making those difficult choices in your business becomes a hell of a lot easier!

What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?

As a remote team, we rely on tools like Slack and Jira to collaborate and manage our day-to-day tasks. This will sound like a bit of a sales pitch, but the truth is that the most important tool we use in our business is the User back. As a software company, we use User back for our bug reporting, user feedback, feature requests, etc. We’re probably our #1 customer! Which has served us well because it’s helped us deeply understand how software companies can improve and build better software by collecting visual feedback from their users.

Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?

When we first started Userback, the main use case that we were solving was to help website designers collect feedback on the websites they were designing. Today, many competing products do this same thing. So as we’ve grown, we’re made a conscious effort to expand on the use cases that we solve, which is why Userback is now loved by all sorts of software teams, including designers, developers, product managers, and more. We’ve grown from a point solution to a fully-featured visual feedback platform, and we’re not finished yet!

Your final thoughts

If there is one constant in life, it is “change.” Covid and the way that this has changed the world is a perfect example of this. I think the last 12 months have made us more resilient and more willing to experiment, innovate, and be better for business owners worldwide. But as things change, some things remain the same. Valuing customer feedback and putting your customers first is as important today as it has ever been.

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