Probe case-study Q&A

How Castle uses Probe to automate analytics

Valerie Kirk

Director of Business Operations at Castle

What do you do at Castle?

I am Director of Business Operations at Castle. I oversee the Finance function and Operations related to Sales Ops, HR, and Legal.

What’s the problem that Probe is solving for you?

We were looking for a better way to view ‘management metrics’ like MRR, ARR, Churn, ARPU, etc and track overall bookings and revenue growth. I had built a somewhat complicated Excel spreadsheet based on these essential markers, but it was nearly impossible to keep it accurate and up to date and to trust the information because it required constant manual updates. Probe provided a more accurate and real-time solution to visualize and access data points for our billing and revenue because they sync their software automatically with Stripe, which we use as our billing system.

Previously we relied on Excel spreadsheets which is undesirable because it requires manual updating, is prone to human error, and may not include the latest information.
Anything that requires manual upkeep will ultimately fail or contain inaccurate information.

What was important for you when trying to solve this problem?

I wanted to be able to trust the information, cut down on the time I spent gathering and cleaning the data, and had a way to visualize the information instead of creating more rudimentary graphs in Excel as a way to visualize the data.

What did the implementation process look like?

Implementation was super smooth. I downloaded information from our billing systems in Excel spreadsheets and they were able to quickly manipulate the data into Probe.

They were able to take our historical data as well, so we could start the clock several years earlier, which is essential in tracking trends over time. This was particularly critical because at one point we were maintaining two billing systems. There is no way Stripe would have been able to incorporate our historical information to get the complete picture that we needed.

How did it change after adopting Probe? Did it become easier? Faster? Do you have any numbers to back this up?

Probe was able to bifurcate our enterprise and self-serve revenue models. This was extremely helpful as we pursued a product-led growth strategy. We are able to see the growth comprehensively, as well as by different revenue streams. I was also able to download the data points when I needed to analyze the data further, which is something I have done as part of our quarterly board meetings.

I am able to review the data immediately and trust its accuracy. It would have taken me hours previously to confirm the accuracy of our data, not to mention the time it would take to build graphs and visualizations to present to the executive team. This would have became increasingly problematic, and required additional labor, as we scale the business further. Instead we are able to rely on technology instead of adding additional manpower.

There have been multiple times when I was asked a question about revenue by the executive team during a meeting that I was able to answer immediately by logging into Probe. If we did not have this tool, I would not be able to respond so quickly on the fly. It made me feel more in control of the numbers and gave me immediate credibility with the team.

How often do you interact with Probe?

I definitely use Probe on a weekly basis. It has all the hallmarks of a great company – synthesizes complex information into simple and beautiful design.