Hectre, the orchard management and fruit sizing company from New Zealand, has recently launched bilingual support for its US market.
“Our US customer base is expanding considerably. While it’s fantastic to see this growth occurring, we’re extremely aware that welcoming new customers is just one step in the customer journey. Even more important is supporting our new customers as they become fully familiar with our software, so that they can gain optimal benefit from their investment. This focus has seen the establishment of Hectre Customer Success Specialists, whose entire mission is to successfully train and support new customers to help get the most out of the software. We know that many of our US customers have Spanish speaking team members, so we’ve also incorporated bilingual support into our expansion strategy,” says Hectre CEO Matty Blomfield.
The company has seen a 300% increase in US sales over the past two quarters, making the US market their fastest growing region. Customer retention rates are impressive and sit at around 95%.
Hectre Customer Success Specialist, Ali Velasco (left in group photo), on a training visit to Washington Fruit giant, Borton Fruit.
The brain has to carry out neural gymnastics when it’s learning anything new. When those learnings are in your second language, the brain effort required is significant, the process can be frustrating, and messages can get distorted meaning the training efficacy is reduced. Learners often require multiple sessions for the same topic, unnecessarily extending the upskilling period and delaying realisation of key benefits.
To address this, the Hectre app itself has been made bilingual, with the software available in both Spanish and English and adding to that, the company has now put on the ground bilingual support in place.
Ali Velasco is based in Washington and joined the US Hectre team earlier this year as a Customer Success Specialist. “I’m from Yakima and love working one on one with teams to support their success. Having worked in a number of different agricultural roles, it’s excellent to be partnering with Hectre’s customers both in person and remotely, to help them get the absolute maximum benefit from both our Orchard Management System and our computer vision fruit sizing solution, Spectre. I speak both Spanish and English and find it really helps with training, if staff can learn in their first language.”
Borton Fruit, one of the largest single growers of apples, pears and cherries in the US, trialled Hectre’s Orchard Management System in 2020 and then signed on for a three-year license. The company continually seeks out technology solutions as they drive forward in their quest of providing even greater fruit quality for their customers. Sam McCoy, CIO at Borton Fruit notes, “Many times IT solutions pitched in a boardroom don’t pan out as expected. It’s extremely important to consider the people who will be using the new technology. What we like most about Hectre is the ability to grow into additional modules over time and the Bring Your Own Device model which gives us the option to use our devices for other business purposes. With Hectre’s bilingual support, this makes it even easier for our people to adopt the technology and for us as a business to gain the advantages.”
One of the key competitive advantages of Hectre, is clever simplicity. “We use extremely sophisticated technology (machine learning, computer vision and AI), but are obsessed with delivering simple to use user experiences. The fruit growing industry employs people with a wide range of skill levels, and with constraints on labor increasing, tech simplicity becomes even more critical for successful adoption. The addition of bilingual support adds further strength to our mission of making life easier for growers,” adds Blomfield.