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In an interview with CIOApplications, Karl Markgraf, COO, and Alex Georgiou, Director, Product Management at TeamViewer, explain how its products provide support to their clients’ network infrastructure and help them run smooth operations across the globe.
Can you give a brief overview of TeamViewer for our readers?
[Karl] TeamViewer is an international company based near Stuttgart, Germany with 1,300 employees worldwide. We have a unique revenue growth rate of 40 percent, with last year's revenue amounting to €460,000,000, and it keeps increasing year over year.
[Alex] TeamViewer started as an SMB product for small IT service providers and focused on remote access, remote control, and collaboration. We now provide solutions to enterprise organizations across all verticals. Our services also include solutions in IoT, Augmented Reality (AR), and AI.
What are the recent challenges and pain points you faced while delivering remote access and support to your customers? How did you align yourself according to them?
[Karl] TeamViewer is widely recognized throughout our broad user-base of home users to large enterprises. We have had more than 2.5 billion installations of our software worldwide. TeamViewer is engineered to establish really good connections in low bandwidth environments. It is also end-to-end encrypted and thus very secure.
TeamViewer also significantly contributes positively to the environment by reducing CO2 emissions. If you can connect to your office remotely from somewhere in Europe without traveling there, naturally, you save a lot of CO2.
[Alex] A lot of industries look for a secure solution they can operate inside their network. Many organizations are also converting their on-premise infrastructure to a cloud platform. This is where our key DNA comes from, as we provide a secure state-of-the-art cloud platform. Our solution also provides customers with complete administrative control during remote connectivity.
[Karl] We recently acquired and integrated two companies to expand our product portfolio. One provides an AR solution while the other enables co-browsing to solve customer problems in realtime. We also have an online meeting solution for video conferencing.
we will continue to build out our portfolio of solutions to help our customers solve their real-world business problems
[Karl] The second biggest department in TeamViewer is our international support organization. We have customer support available in more than 15 languages worldwide to speak to our customers in their native languages. We have teams in Europe, U.S., China, Australia, and Japan to provide support via the local support teams.
We differentiate customer enquiries between level one(L1) and level two(L2) support. In L1, we answer any general question asked of us. L2 support involves answering more technical experience-related questions between the tech guys of TeamViewer and the those at the client.
We provide stellar support to all of our customers, as TeamViewer believes in supporting every user equally, regardless of license size. We also have Community Support, where customers can ask questions and get information on our products from their peers.
[Alex] Many of our customers are not fully clear on what issues they are trying to resolve, especially when it comes to IoT and AI. We help them by providing our solution engineers and a salespeople to talk to them about their issues and to see if our solution could be better customized to suit their needs.
We always look from a solution perspective to see if we need to adjust different variables within our products to solve their problems. Most commonly, the problem-solving process starts from internal IT support and then progresses to solving AI and IoT-related problems. We also sell professional services to help customers during implementation and to train their staff in maintaining and configuring TeamViewer.
Could you enlighten our readers about some of the key features and functionalities of your product?
[Alex] When we transitioned from focusing on the needs of the SMB to larger organizations, the most critical additions to our solution set were around security and manageability. Our top priority was integrating with the existing identity providers like Azure, ADE, Okta, etc. because large organizations with thousands of users don't want to have an additional proprietary user management system to maintain users separately. Security in this direction is vital as the integrating identity provider automatically inherits all the security policies present in the organization. Additionally, employees and customers also inherit the policies making it convenient for them to lock their standard credentials.
While developing TeamViewer, we had the philosophy of having an easy-to-use product that can work out-of-the-box in any environment. However, less configuration can lessen the effectiveness of firewalls, which can pose a huge security issue. To counter this, we developed a component known as Conditional Access. It is a rule-based engine where one can configure who in the organization can access specific IT assets. Conditional Access proved to be highly useful in the current pandemic environment where administrators can choose which home workers get access to what machines.
How do you envision the next 12-18 months for TeamViewer? Any new rollouts or acquisitions that you can share with our readers?
[Karl] In 2019, we had a very successful IPO to fuel our growth, as we want to be one of the leading tech providers coming out of Europe and servicing customers worldwide. We think digitization brings even more businesses and customers to us as they need remote connectivity and security solutions. All of that brings immense opportunities for TeamViewer and enables us to fulfill our dream of becoming one of the world's most prominent tech players.
[Alex] There are a lot of companies that are implementing digitalization strategies to find ways to improve their online experiences, in not just support, but also in online sales enablement as their local and retail stores are shut down due to the pandemic. That's why we developed a solution with co-browsing and chat functionality to help companies better interact with their customers online.
In the next 12-18 months and beyond, we will continue to build out our portfolio of solutions to help our customers solve their real-world business problems.