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Success Story

A Strategic Transition to Consumption-Based Forecasting for Confluent

As the category pioneer in data streaming platforms, Confluent is used to paving new roads in technology and business. So it’s no surprise that their leadership team had the foresight to know that the future of revenue is consumption-based, and the team needed to transform their operations to stay ahead.

They knew the transformation would be a massive undertaking, and the key component in operating a consumption-driven business would be the ability to forecast effectively. To make it possible, they partnered with Atrium to build a consumption forecasting application with data visualizations in Salesforce.

A Complex Project Delivered in Record Time 

While most companies still forecast revenue by account or opportunity, the consumption model is becoming more popular with those that see the value in recognizing revenue by customer usage. This aligns more to the way people want to consume products and services in today’s world.

“The industry is moving to consumption models, which is relatively new in the market, and not many companies have undertaken this journey,” said Sudhakar Jukanti, Confluent’s Senior Director of GTM Systems. “Atrium was highly recommended by Salesforce for their consumption work.”

The Confluent team had previously managed their consumption forecasts in spreadsheets, with data dispersed across multiple locations. They needed to bring their consumption data sources into Salesforce and present customer usage insights in a way that sales reps, CSMs, and managers could take action on. This included the ability to forecast a customer’s future consumption and retrospectively compare that with what they actually consumed, and make necessary adjustments.

The Atrium team brought all consumption insights into one application within Salesforce, so Confluent’s sales team members and managers can now see data for each account, and track forecasting patterns and trends. They built dashboards for AEs to see consumption details for their entire book of business, and created an AE Performance Table to give leadership an overview of their high and low performers to drive more productive conversations and coaching. 

The Confluent team prides themselves on being very high-touch and proactive with their customers. With this new consumption solution, sales reps and CSMs can now track usage by account, enabling them to identify attrition risks or upsell opportunities — and take quick action. 

“This project is a core component of our business process change,” added Sudhakar. “With this app, we’ve brought visibility into incremental consumption to our reps. We have much more transparency now in Salesforce than we ever had before.” 

Despite the scale and complexity of the project, Atrium was able to meet Confluent’s tight timeline so they could roll out the new forecasting process at the beginning of the fiscal year. “I’ve been in this space for 20+ years, and if I had to pick, this is probably one of my top two or three most complex projects,” said Sudhakar. “And the fact that they were able to get this done in record time — in three or four months — is unbelievable.”

A Consumption Solution Built for Business Outcomes

While the technology and complex data science was a huge part of the project, Atrium was also able to bring critical business process knowledge to the table to help Confluent make a strategic transition to a consumption-based model. The Atrium team went above and beyond to make the project a success, and set Confluent up well for future growth and expansion.

“We got the support we needed from the Atrium team,” said Sudhakar. “It was not an easy project, and it was not a small project. They worked really hard to meet our go-live deadline. There were some hiccups along the way, but the support from the Atrium leadership team was outstanding.”

While their initial consumption forecasting project is launched, the Confluent team isn’t done yet. They’re now focused on adoption and change management with their team, and have plans to expand their capabilities in Salesforce. “We’re still looking to enhance the app to make it more complete. As we build out our solution in CRM Analytics, we plan to use it for other sales use cases, and will be engaging with Atrium again to work with our field analytics team to build more dashboards.”

About Confluent

With Confluent, organizations can harness the full power of continuously flowing data to innovate and win in the modern digital world. Their cloud-native platform acts as a central nervous system in companies, letting them connect all their applications around real-time streams and react and respond intelligently to everything that happens in their business.

The Technology

Revenue Intelligence
BigQuery

“With this app, we’ve brought visibility into incremental consumption to our reps. We have much more transparency now in Salesforce than we ever had before.”

Sudhakar Jukanti

Senior Director of GTM Systems, Confluent

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