How 6 world-class companies make an outsized impact with shared data

How 6 world-class companies make an outsized impact with shared data

Leading global companies are using connected apps to dismantle silos.

When work is hidden within different tools, and workflows don’t match up between teams, your employees are pulled into a haze of messages, emails, and repetitive conversations. Opportunities for collaboration almost always go unnoticed, and it’s impossible to achieve stronger outcomes at scale.

Solving these problems was front and center at our recent Leaders Forum in San Francisco, where Howie Liu, Airtable’s CEO, positioned the Airtable Connected Apps Platform as a way for companies to connect workflows, share data, and deepen trust between teams.

“Siloed data, misalignment between departments, and disconnected processes restrain organizations from moving quickly and in lock step,” Howie said in his Keynote. “Companies not only need apps that are customized and functional at a team level—they need apps that are connected, organization-wide, to bridge the fractures that threaten their future success.”

With this in mind, here’s how connected apps are transforming companies in every industry—from BlackRock, a multi-national investment company, to Riot Games, a video game developer, publisher and tournament organizer.

1. Curating a beautiful online storefront at Pottery Barn

At Pottery Barn, a furniture and decor store, the online experience is just as beautifully curated as the physical storefronts. But when Angela Williams, director of Creative Services, started her role, there wasn’t a clear process for organizing, planning, and approving product pages before they hit the website.

By sharing data and information between copywriters, ecommerce merchants, production artists, and digital designers, Angela has been able to streamline and scale the way product pages are published. With all metadata and relevant information in a centralized repository from the outset, the team has more time to review and optimize every piece of information before it enters testing.

“At the end of the day, we're trying to please our customers and we need to have time to look at the product from their point of view. Airtable has made our lives easier. It's connected everybody together so we can all work on something at the same time,” says Angela. “Connection means speed, it means efficiency, it means fewer mistakes. It means a nicer product at the end of the day for the customer.”

2. Delivering more surprising experiences at Riot Games

Riot Games is on a mission to develop, publish, and support games globally. You might have heard of League of Legends, a title the company first debuted in 2006 that has gone on to become the most-played PC game in the world. The Riot Games team uses Airtable to sync data and information about campaigns, results, and resourcing.

Sharing this data has illuminated trends in employee engagement, and has helped leadership focus the team on what they do best—developing, publishing, and promoting groundbreaking video games. “For Riot games, shared data means an incredible fan experience,” says Kate Lilly Rella, director of business operations for IP Strategy at Riot Games. “If we're all connected, the fans get surprises and delight at every turn. Airtable has worked well for us. It makes what feels like an impossible task—managing all these disconnected pieces of information—possible.”

3. Driving cross-team collaboration at BlackRock

The team at Aladdin Wealth, part of BlackRock, is building a product that financial advisors use to help more people experience financial well-being. The team of product marketers and developers built an app in Airtable that connects technologists and senior stakeholders internally so that they can work together more efficiently on product management, business development, engineering, design, and product marketing. (This doesn’t include any client data or personal identifiable information, only internal project information.)

“Airtable frees up 80 hours a week of our product marketing team’s time,” said Dan Cunningham, senior product director for Aladdin Wealth. This leads to tighter release schedules and a faster deployment of new features to clients. Dan says, “since using Airtable to communicate our product updates we've really seen faster time-to-market.”

Transparency is key to all the work being done at Aladdin Wealth to ensure clients know what features are available to them. Airtable keeps Aladdin Wealth team members up-to-date internally on product launches. “As a global team, it's complicated to keep everyone in the loop, Airtable really helps us stay in the loop,” Dan says.

4. Giving employees the confidence to act at BlueOcean

At BlueOcean, the team is building a software solution to help companies make more holistic and informed decisions across their marketing strategy—whether it’s sustaining growth, cutting spend, or future-proofing a brand.

As a start up, knowing where employees are spending their time is a matter of survival, says Jenny Bodenlos, head of enterprise program management at BlueOcean. “It is an absolute necessity that we really understand what everybody is taking action on and how those actions will help enable our strategy.”

The company uses Airtable to ensure that every team—sales, marketing, customer success—are rallied around the same data. All employees can see, in real time, how the product is progressing, and this visibility means that they’re ready to convey new features to customers quickly. Jenny says: “Shared data at BlueOcean really means giving people the confidence to act. Connection is everything. It allows us to come together as a collective to achieve a mission that we couldn’t do on our own.”

5. Offering leadership the full picture at Benchling

Benchling is a cloud-based platform for biotechnology research and development. The platform itself gives researchers a place to capture, standardize, and centralize data. A similar effort is underway internally at Benchling to make sure the product team, go-to-market team, and leadership team are fully aligned around the same information.

By sharing data between teams and making customer feedback more transparent in a centralized location, Ian Fischer, product operations manager at Benchling, has strengthened connection and collaboration across the org. Data was duplicated within siloed integrations and spreadsheets. Now, that data is fully visible to all key stakeholders, increasing its richness and making decisions more impactful.

“Having a centralized place for everyone to see the data has really improved the robustness of that data because people are more willing to interact with it,” says Ian. “With Airtable I'm able to surface insights to our leadership team showing them which customers are impacted by different releases on the roadmap.”

6. Bringing together industry visionaries at Scale AI

Scale AI is on a mission to accelerate innovation in AI and, being at the forefront of this cutting edge space, the team is in a unique position to share their insights and expertise with the world. This thought leadership culminates at the Scale TransformX Conference, which brings together AI leaders, visionaries, and researchers from several industries.

Planning TransformX involves input from the entire organization, and the team at Scale AI uses Airtable to connect data around speakers, budget, invoices, vendors, campaigns, branding, sales enablement, and more. With 120 speakers and 300+ hours of recording, it’s critical that every employee has the most accurate information at their fingertips.

“Being able to connect data across teams has been life changing,” says Marcel Santilli, head of marketing at Scale AI. “If we invite an executive, and their title changes, for example, we’re able to update the information in one place and know that their contact information is up-to-date in every other record across the org.”

By connecting this critical information in a single source of truth, a core team of just 14 people at Scale AI was able to pull off a three-day event last October, successfully drawing more than 30,000 attendees in-person and virtually. “Shared data for us means less friction in how we get work done, fewer mistakes, less manual work, and it means we can move faster and create more value,” Marcel says.

Whether it’s investing money around the world, producing groundbreaking video games, growing a software startup, or fast-tracking biolife experiments, these customers show the power of connecting data and information between teams.

A connected apps platform gives every stakeholder access to up-to-date information in real time, strengthening decision making and accelerating output across the organization. To learn more about connected apps, hear from Ilan Frank, VP of Product at Airtable, on the benefits of sharing data and consolidating SaaS at enterprise organizations.

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