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The Heartbeat of Satisfaction: A Sertifi Customer Success Story

Here at Sertifi, we prioritize listening to our customers and learning from them so we can offer the tools they need to be successful. To celebrate Valentine’s Day, I sat down with the heart and soul of Sertifi, an industry veteran, and Sertifi’s manager of customer success, Peter Laspas, to capture his favorite customer moments and learn about how he and his team help set our customers up for success. 

Mimi McNulty: Hi Peter, thank you for joining me today. 

Peter Laspas: Hello! Thank you for having me. 

MM: First off, can you tell our audience a little bit about who you are? 

PL: I’m approaching almost seven years at Sertifi, but it feels like seven days. I helped launch our first customer success-focused program after joining as a technical customer success manager. Customer success is a newer discipline that’s starting to establish traction in the industry, but, at the time of my joining, it was relatively new in that we were using data to proactively reach out to customers that needed point-in-time assistance and/or consultation to reach their goals. 

MM: Once a customer is handed over to you, what goes into getting them successfully onboarded and smoothly adopting our product? 

PL: I would say it's a partnership and that there's no magic bullet for success. The reason a customer becomes a customer is because they have a business challenge, and they are coming to us because we have a solution. First, we expect the excitement of our new partnership to carry over to the initial setup and training calls, because it’s imperative they are active participants in those. Then, it’s up to us to get ramped up and strategize a launch plan, so when we’re ready to press “play,” everyone's prepared and can reap the benefits of Sertifi. 

MM: Can you tell us more about how you identify and measure customer success? Are there any specific metrics or indicators that you prioritize?  

PL: We certainly like to identify what our customers’ goals are and build our metrics around that. The biggest reason I feel they come to us is because they want a cleaner, frictionless way of doing things. So, we look at the volume of how much they touch our product, how sticky it is for them, and determine if they are reaching their goals. 

MM: Communication and feedback are super important for the customer success team. What role does customer feedback play in your approach to customer success?  

PL: It plays a huge role. It helps dictate how we deliver our solutions, and who better to tell us what that should look like other than our customers? They're on the front lines using our product at work daily.  

MM: What are your favorite types of customer success cases? 

PL: I like to manage unique scenarios, especially if there's a technical element where you're just trying to solve a workflow problem. I was initially hired as a technical customer support manager to help construct the workflow for our customers on the SaaS side. I would meet with them, learn about any issues they were having, and then I would share it with our technical analysts to see if there was anything we could do or build to help smooth things out. I still enjoy reducing that friction and creating a cleaner workflow to help make things feel like second nature while using any Sertifi solution.  

MM: You said that you've been in this role for almost seven years now. Have you seen it all? Is there any problem a customer can bring you that you haven’t seen? 

PL: Oh, there's always something new because business is always evolving. I’ve seen repeatable problems, but it’s my approach that changes. For example, AI is a breakthrough thing right now, so I will start to think about how it will impact our customers and what solutions we can deliver to them to help with that new piece of technology.  

MM: Interesting. I’ve never thought about it that way, but it really is just a continuous evolving cycle that you have to adapt to each time.  

PL: It makes the job fun and keeps things charged. I think it would be super boring if we saw everything and there was nothing new to do. It keeps you on your toes.  

MM: What is the most memorable piece of feedback you have gotten from a customer and why was it memorable?  

PL: The most memorable one that stands out to me was when a customer was attempting to cancel their service with Sertifi. They didn’t really know anything about the product; they just saw it on their bill, and they didn’t know how to pronounce the name of the company. They were calling it, “SER-TEE-FEE,” which was all I needed to know they wanted to cancel. After I had a couple of conversations in which I was showing them how our solution can make their job easier and more secure, the response I got back was just fantastic. It was the best email response I could ever imagine. Can I read it to you? I have it here. 

MM: Please do! 

PL: She said, “The video you shared was great. I got my first contract signed in a matter of seconds. Now everything is much easier!” And she just goes on and on about the benefits of Sertifi. When I read this for the first time, I was sitting back in my chair thinking,

“This is why we come here and do this. This is the type of realization that we want all customers to experience. This is what success is about: helping every customer have that “aha” moment that comes from using our solutions.” 


MM: That’s awesome! That must have felt so good to hear. 

PL: It was! I keep it in my back pocket at all times because it reminds me of why I love doing what I do, which is to help our customers realize the impact of our solution and how it can solve their problems. 

MM: Is there a time that you and a customer achieved a significant milestone together?  

PL: I would say it’s when a customer captures their 100th or 1,000th payment, signature, authorization forms, what have you. Or when they are looking to upgrade their agreement. Needing to upgrade from 25 users to 50 is a great problem to have! Our product helps them expand – and as customers grow, Sertifi grows, too. Growth is great. 

MM: Have you ever made a memorable connection with a customer? 

PL: I don’t know if I can name just one. What I will say is that when anyone wants to invest in any type of solution, whether it’s Sertifi or something else, you want to realize that there is a clear time-to-value ratio, and one way to foster that is with connection and partnership. You just have to create that partnership and know that you can support each other. If there's a lack of alignment between the two sides, you're going to have a delay in your launch, or you may have no launch at all.  

For example, I had a new customer cancel a few initial meetings in a row because they were putting out fires on their end related to the problems our product fixes. As a result, they lost some momentum getting Sertifi set up. But I was able to finally meet with them when the time was right and offer them a moment to reset and recenter by saying,

“I know we missed a couple of calls, but let's just start by setting one goal and then take the necessary steps to get there. That's all we're going to worry about today. Once we reach that goal, we’ll take more steps that we both agree on and set a celebratory launch date.”


Once that was said and done, the customer could celebrate Sertifi rather than see it as another thing on the calendar.  

MM: So, it's that personal touch that really keeps things on track. Building trust and keeping the balance of a partnership is what really matters. 

PL: Yes, it’s about trust and empathy, too. We're all human beings. Things get in the way, right? I've had to postpone calls because of certain things, too. As long as we stay aligned and transparent with each other and work together to achieve that ultimate goal, that's all that matters.  

MM: What is your proudest moment as a customer success manager?  

PL: Oh my goodness, what would be the proudest? I think it’s having the honor of being a manager of a team – to be entrusted with a group of talented, smart, and enthusiastic people that share the same vision of what this team's about and what we're looking to accomplish and deliver to our customers. It's about making them successful, too. There’s pride in leading a team, in not only helping propel them and our customers - but also define the shape of customer success. 

And really, this job is just the name of the game. If you just want to help people or have a servant’s heart, then this job is for you. And it’s great to serve at Sertifi, especially because we primarily serve the hospitality industry, the people with the biggest hearts and the most important job of serving others! When everybody gets to achieve their goals, that’s pretty incredible and makes me the proudest. 

MM: Wow Peter, your heart really does beat to the tune of customer success. Thank you so much for joining me today. 

PL: Thank you for having me! 

Sertifi's the only complete platform to help you simplify and secure all your workflows, reduce payment costs and fraud, and maximize convenience for your guests, and we can't wait to show you the possibilities.

Ready to explore how our customers are finding success with Sertifi solutions?

About the author

Mimi McNulty

Mimi McNulty is a Marketing Generalist at Sertifi. While she makes a point to have a pulse on all things Sertifi, Mimi is responsible for the company's social media channels, event coordination, and blog. She also assists with content creation, creative marketing, content strategy, and internal marketing ventures. Mimi is a communication enthusiast with a passion for storytelling and media relations.