Please help my find a good tech tool example to use in my job interview
January 3, 2017 2:06 PM   Subscribe

Hi! I have an interview a [Social Network] tomorrow and I anticipate a question about implementing a management system for organizing and coordinating different information from different sources. As a non-technical person, I'd love some ideas for tools/software that I could use as examples.

The situation: Company currently has a number of teams doing outreach to do recruiting for business research. Right now there there are no decent processes or tools used to track who is reaching out to clients, when, and for what.  Essentially the team is looking for someone that could work on behalf of the research team to set up best practices and tools when reaching out and engaging to businesses so they're not reaching out to them too many or too few times in order to get input. So the challenge is: what would be an ideal system for streamlining, regulating, organizing and managing a body of information about contacts, research subjects, and clients? Offhand, having not worked with many software tools in the past, it seems like some sort of relational database would be in order, but what kind? Is there another type of tool that might be helpful that I'm missing? I'm grateful for your help in trying to nail this interview!
posted by foxy_hedgehog to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
It sounds like you could use a customer relationship management (CRM) system, such as Salesforce. You can have projects, contacts, accounts, all connected to each other.
posted by saturngirl at 2:08 PM on January 3, 2017

SalesForce is the 900 pound gorilla in this space.

Like everything else there are a huge number of "top ten" or "best of" lists. Here is one.
posted by Medieval Maven at 2:16 PM on January 3, 2017

What skills outside of technical ones do you have that make you an appealing applicant for this position? I think that is what you want to focus on rather than providing a list of possible tech tools that are available to address this issue. The danger of the latter approach is that they will follow-up to ask you if and how you'd those tools to which you'll have to respond that you don't know, which makes naming them pointless and you look clueless.

Instead, focus on your overall approach and strategy for addressing the problem. Think through what you see as the major challenges with this kind of outreach, and pull heavily on your past experience to provide concrete examples of solutions you've developed to counter these challenges. When describing your approach, you can talk generally about how you'll look to tools like CRM systems to help you implement your strategy. Name-dropping a CRM or two as part of a larger discussion of your strategy will allow you to acknowledge that you know that they are important implementation tools for this kind of work, without it seeming like your entire approach is to buy some software off the shelf and hope that it will do the job for you.
posted by scantee at 2:21 PM on January 3, 2017 [3 favorites]

Thanks, this is very helpful!
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 3:46 PM on January 3, 2017

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