The Scars of Scaling
By Jeff Sakasegawa /
25 Apr 2019
Scale is what all companies are striving for: winning it, dealing with the pressures of it, or taking it to the next level. Regardless of what phase you’re in, one thing remains consistent. Scaling leaves scars.
This sounds painful, right? Who wants scars? But all that matters is what you get as a result of the pain — namely, working for a leading company that is growing and earning industry respect. Ultimately, the scars of scaling come from a few notable factors that we’ll address in turn.
Time is of the Essence
In the Trust & Safety space, we often find ourselves putting out fires. Maybe you’ve noticed an increase in chargebacks, or maybe your accounts are being compromised at an increasing rate… What do you do? You have to come up with a fix in the moment, and this is where mistakes can happen. You can make your life easier by working through a simple checklist to quickly get you started on a remediation plan.
- Are any customer communications required? If yes, talk to Customer Success
- Contact my engineering (or service provider) point of contact ASAP
- Draft and distribute review instructions for my Trust & Safety team relative to this event
- Open communication channel for internal stakeholders for updates (email or Slack)
- Hold a post-mortem meeting after the event, which must answer: What happened, and what should we start, stop, or continue doing?
Build to Last
Like I said before, scars are inevitable. However, the only way to prevent future injury is by learning from these events. To that end, it’s important to recognize the difference between temporary and long term fixes.
Rules, heuristics, and manual processes have their place in Trust & Safety organizations. They serve as salves for issues on your platform — but, much like a salve, their effect is temporary. It is critical to reduce your dependence on these methods over time and invest in scalable solutions. At Sift, of course, we find value in machine learning, but this could be any technological solution that saves you effort over time.
Keep Your Customer in Mind
Lastly, keep in mind the customers you’re serving. Only by enabling them and providing them with positive experiences will your scaling continue. I’ve seen it often: in the pursuit of new customers, businesses leave first customers by the wayside. Save yourself future headache by operating in a way that serves both populations as equitably as possible.
Maintaining Trust & Safety is a crucial step for serving both groups. If you are able to properly identify and mitigate stolen credit card payments, account takeovers, and spammy content, your business will have the confidence to launch new endeavors.
I hope that you’ve found this blog post interesting! If you liked the content here, I’d encourage you to watch our recent “What you missed at the MRC” webinar on the same topic or request a Digital Trust & Safety Assessment at sift.com/assessment.