RingCentral Provides Cost-Effective, Out-of-the-Box Communications for Leading Product Roadmap Software Maker

Needed a phone solution that would work easily on day one, scale easily later.
Cloud-based RingCentral enabled easy office expansion and frictionless growth.
Continuing to benefit from RingCentral’s ease of use and cost-effectiveness.
Company profile
Company profile:
When product management teams at some of the world’s leading companies want to seamlessly plan, visualize, and share product strategies, they rely on ProductPlan’s roadmapping solution. ProductPlan makes it easy for teams of all sizes to build and share detailed-yet-attractive product roadmaps. That’s why in just five years, ProductPlan has become the leading roadmap app worldwide, having been used by product teams in more than 75 countries to plan and communicate more than 2 million strategic initiatives.
Year founded:
Fewer than 50 employees
Santa Barbara, CA

When they launched their roadmap software company, ProductPlan founders Jim Semick and Greg Goodman both had entrepreneurial successes under their belts. Semick was a founding member of the software company AppFolio and had also helped launch apps such as GoToMeeting and GoToMyPC. Goodman founded software maker Miramar Systems, which was acquired by Computer Associates. These entrepreneurs knew firsthand how to grow a startup, including the right type of communications solution for a young company. With that knowledge, the founders chose RingCentral Office® to handle

ProductPlan’s business communications needs from day one. In fact, RingCentral played a key role in helping Semick and Goodman choose roadmap software as the right business to enter, basing the decision on the dozens of market validation interviews they conducted using RingCentral. Today, with thousands of customers using their software, including many Fortune 100 companies, ProductPlan’s growing team uses RingCentral to communicate efficiently and be responsive to its customers and prospects.

An easy-to-use communication solution got the startup up and running quickly

“I started using RingCentral two years before launching ProductPlan, while I was consulting for technology companies and needed a professional-quality business phone,” says Jim Semick, ProductPlan’s Co-Founder and Chief Strategist.

“I looked at a few VoIP options, including some that had only softphone capability, but I chose RingCentral for a few big reasons. First, I wanted a physical desktop phone rather than having to always rely on my cell phone. RingCentral had all of the communication features I wanted in a single package, the price was right, and everything came preconfigured so it was very easy to get started.”

When Semick began brainstorming and validating startup ideas with fellow entrepreneur Greg Goodman, he was already sold on using

RingCentral for whatever company they might launch. “The RingCentral platform had worked well for me for years, and I could see it would be easy to roll out and scale up with our growing business,” Semick recalls.

The founders used RingCentral to conduct dozens of interviews with potential user and buyer personas to test their early product ideas. “When our market research led us in 2013 to the idea of making roadmap software for product teams,” Semick explains, “it felt natural to scale with RingCentral’s cloud solution as we grew the company. They made it easy to get new employees set up with phones and business numbers.”

RingCentral helps ProductPlan provide high-quality experiences to customers worldwide

“Today, we have thousands of customers in dozens of countries,” Semick explains. “It’s amazing to realize some of the world’s most respected companies use our software to plan and share their roadmaps and strategies.”

“The RingCentral platform plays a key role, especially for our Customer Success teams, in helping us consistently deliver a high-quality call experience to our customers and to be responsive whenever they need us.”

ProductPlan believes RingCentral offers many benefits for small companies and startups

“The RingCentral platform has supported ProductPlan’s growth over the years in a number of ways,” says Semick, “and I think it could benefit many young and small companies. I’ll give you some examples.”

“Ease of use. Setting up a new employee with RingCentral is really as easy as unboxing the phone, plugging it in, and recording a voicemail message. It doesn’t require any specialized technical expertise.”

“Portability. As our staff grew, we had to move to new offices or take over additional space in our existing offices. With RingCentral, the beauty was we could take the phones to our new space and just plug and play. Because RingCentral is cloud-based, we never needed to set up physical phone lines or wait for a telecom provider to activate service for our staff.”

“Time and cost savings. If we had an on-prem PBX or other traditional business phone system, we’d be spending time and money configuring and managing it. And if we instead relied entirely on our cell phones for business communication, that would create inefficiencies in the office in terms of being able to grab a coworker’s ringing phone or easily transferring calls to the right person. Having the RingCentral cloud platform is the perfect solution for a young but fast-growing company like ProductPlan.”

“Easy scalability. As our Account Management and Customer Success teams grow, RingCentral makes it so easy for us to get them up and running. We just add users, order phones, and plug them in. We don’t have an IT team, and when you’re a startup like us, every aspect of your tech infrastructure that you can outsource, simplify, or set up to be self-running makes it much easier to scale quickly. That’s yet another reason I’m so glad we went with RingCentral from day one.” 

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