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Centercode Podcast

Leading Appian's Beta Program Forward

Posted on
October 17, 2023

Often on the Delta Huddle Podcast, we feature guests who have spent five, ten, and sometimes 30 years in the beta testing space. But this episode is a refreshing new perspective - that of a brand new beta manager leading a beta program forward.

Elizabeth Hall is Senior Beta Program Manager at Appian, a low-code B2B platform for automating business processes. Coming from the worlds of product management and user research, Elizabeth is new in her role compared to some of our previous guests, but she’s already spearheading an incredible transformation of Appian’s beta program.

In this episode, we explored why it’s important to set the tone for your beta tests, the difference between qualitative and quantitative data, and why mentorship was key for Elizabeth’s start in beta testing. We can’t wait to see how Elizabeth leads her beta program forward, and I hope you enjoy our conversation.

In This Episode:

  • (0:00) - Intro
  • (01:35) - How and why Elizabeth went into product management and beta testing
  • (06:14) - Going from an ad hoc system to a centralized beta program
  • (09:19) - First steps when starting a project, setting the tone, and tester quality vs quantity
  • (18:59) - Advice for beta managers who want to focus on qualitative versus quantitative
  • (23:11) - What other teams are involved in beta testing at Appian?
  • (26:59) - How to keep internal teams engaged in beta testing, and who gets involved when
  • (32:10) - Closing out projects, storytelling, and tailoring results to specific audiences
  • (37:06) - Tips for running weekly meetings, how to deliver results, and internal roadshows
  • (44:49) - The benefits of internal beta champions and mentorship
  • (49:00) - Why choose beta testing as a career and mindset changes with beta programs
  • (52:23) - Properly leveraging metrics for effective beta testing

‍About Our Guest:

Elizabeth Hall received her B.S. in Psychology from the College of William & Mary in 2013 and her M.S. in Educational Psychology from George Mason University in 2015. After working in educational research for a few years, she pivoted to the tech space and became an associate product manager at Gartner, where she helped roll out a proprietary survey platform to measure employee engagement. Next, she joined Miller Heiman Group (now Korn Ferry), where she helped digitize the business by bringing their world-class sales training into a Salesforce-integrated product. In June 2020, she became a senior product manager at Appian Corporation, and in April 2023, she became the lead of Appian's beta programs.

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Download the full episode transcript here.

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