Feature Spotlight: Davidson Wicker, CEO of Ravetree

As those of you who have known us over the last few years are aware, The Bookkeeper grew quickly. When new employees were brought on board, it became obvious that our old, piecemeal system of digital file storage in one location, a time tracking app in another, and endless emails detailing project updates, would not be sufficient as we scaled.

We were fortunate to come across Ravetree in its early days, and to have the opportunity to adopt it to our business. It has been a true “game-changer” for us, and has really allowed us to stay on top of all of our client and operational needs, even during rapid expansion.

I got to ask Ravetree CEO Davidson Wicker a few questions about himself, his company, and their product.

Ravetree Logo

Courtney: I saw that your educational background is in Applied Physics. How did you transition that into a career in software development?

Davidson: I taught physics for a couple of years as I was building up my coding skills. We did some scientific programming in grad school, so that’s where I started to get a taste of how fun programming could be.

 

Courtney: Was there a lightning strike, “Eureka!” moment that led to the idea behind Ravetree?
Davidson: I had the idea for Ravetree for a long time. It kind of started with the idea of a cloud-based “operating system” for businesses.
 
Courtney: How did the name “Ravetree” come about?
Davidson: Originally, Ravetree was going to have review capabilities, where users could “rant & rave” about things. And a tree is a kind of data structure. The two words fit together nicely, and the domain name was available, so the name stuck.
 Ravetree Screenshot
Courtney: In your Medium article, 3 Tools Every Agency Needs, you listed Project Management Software, Capacity Planning Software, and Time Tracking Software. I’m familiar with using Ravetree for project management and time tracking, but is there a way to use it for capacity planning as well?
Davidson: Ravetree has really powerful capabilities in terms of capacity planning. Users can view a list of all of their employees and see how many hours of capacity they have remaining. This makes it easy to see when you can take on more work, and if your employees are over or under utilized. We provide a lot of customization around this feature. For example, you can specify what a work week is for each employee, and what a work day is. Some employees may not work a standard Monday through Friday work week, and may be part time. All of that can be set up in Ravetree.
 
Courtney: As we’ve discussed, my only real “complaint” with Ravetree has been that it’s so all-encompassing that I often feel like I’m not utilizing it fully or that there are things I’m missing. What is the best way for a new user to learn Ravetree?
Davidson: Admittedly, we need to get better at providing online training materials, but we do have some tutorial videos. For most of our clients, we get on a few WebEx meetings to give them a walk through. This seems to work well, but definitely won’t scale as we continue to grow.
 Ravetree Screenshot
Courtney: In their feature on Ravetree, Forbes wrote that you have created a “software to help businesses transition their entire operations from waterfall to agile.” That is a big task. How can businesses use this tool to transform their operational mindset to “agile” thinking and work behaviors?
Davidson: We’re not in the business of training people on how to be Agile, or convincing them that they should embrace Agile. Fortunately for us, a lot of companies have already embraced Agile, as they recognize the numerous benefits of taking an Agile approach. Ironically, several of our customer are not Agile at all. What this tells us is that Ravetree isn’t overly opinionated, and will allow non-Agile companies to derive value from our platform.
 
Courtney: Is there anything upcoming in Ravetree that you can share with the public?
Davidson: We are constantly getting user feedback and improving our platform. Some of the newest features we’ve added are: Custom Dashboards, Client portals, File approval workflows, and digital asset management. All of these updates came from customer feedback. Once thing that I find humor in is that a lot of people in the start up community would tell us “you’re boiling the ocean”, or “stop adding new features”. We heard this a lot when we didn’t have any customers. But, what we found out was that customers wanted an all-in-one full-featured solution, so we kept building out our platform. Then, all of a sudden we started landing customers, then more customers. Our early prospects kept saying, “you’re almost there, but we want to see more.” This is 100% the opposite of all the advice I was receiving.
 Ravetree Login
Ravetree has become an essential part of our day-to-day operations. If you’d like to try Ravetree for your business, visit www.ravetree.com/request-a-demo and request a free demo.
Recommended Posts