Our Success Story with Nova

Sergi Gomez
Co-founder of Saivo
"With SAIVO, we have been able to go from very inefficient work on Excel and very limited data visualization on Mixpanel to fully automated Business Intelligent platform" - Ramón Rodrigáñez, CEO at Nova

The importance of data at Nova

Nova, is a top talent network that connects high potential individuals among themselves, and with the best professional opportunities. The key of the Nova platform is the quality of their members, who have to go through a selection process to get in. Once they join as members, Nova offers them a platform where they can connect with like-minded individuals, they can develop themselves and they can accelerate their careers with very relevant opportunities.

Data is a core asset at Nova and its team always want to make their decisions based on data. Plus, Nova is a tech company and, as such, it generates a lot of data: There's data on the selection process of candidates, data on the growth of their members, data on the engagement of themselves, etc. Therefore, the more the Nova team can use and leverage these data, the better decisions they can make to build the right product, to serve their members in the right way and to, ultimately, to build a better business.

Context at Nova before the collaboration with SAIVO

The situation at Nova, before the collaboration with SAIVO, looked like the following:

  • Manual data preparation on Excel: The Nova team would download CSVs from different platforms, they would need to cross that data, clean it, and manually update the reports so that the management teams could use to make informed decisions.
  • Limited BI tool: They were using Mixpanel as their BI tool. However, it didn't offer the flexibility they needed in the analysis and visualization formats. The team felt limited and couldn't meet their needs to explore the data and generate insights. In short, Nova needed a general-purpose BI tool, not vertical tool like Mixpanel (limited to Product Analytics).
  • Lack of a dedicated analytics stack: Data integration and transformation pipelines were integrated into the backend architecture of the Nova app.

As a consequence, Nova was facing the following key challenges

  • The Nova team felt limited in the data visualization and analysis. As introduced before, since they were using a Product Analytics tool (Mixpanel), Nova could not get the core and company-wide KPIs and see the overall picture of the business and drive actionable insights across different teams. Also, they couldn't create the type of charts they wanted to do for a richer data analysis. To put an example, Mixpanel didn't allow them to do a cohort to analyse how a certain group of individuals, that joined Nova in a certain period of time, behave over time.
  • Low quality and confidence in the data. The Nova team didn't really trust fully their data displayed on Mixpanel because the data had not been transformed by them, as it was automatically done by Mixpanel. Put simply, these "plug-and-play"  analytics products are like black boxes. Sometimes, the data that there were seeing on Mixpanel didn't match what they saw on Nova's app.
  • A lot of time was spent on manual processes. On the one hand, business teams spent a big chunk of their time preparing the data on Excel. On the other hand, the engineering team had also to spent part of their valuable time answering ad-hoc requests (manual data extractions from the database, etc.) for business teams.

What we did

We helped Nova build modern and end-to-end analytics stack composed of three main pillars:

  1. A Data Warehouse on the cloud that stores and consolidates all the data generated on their different platforms (the Nova app, marketing and sales, Stripe,...).
  2. Data processing pipelines with dbt that transform the raw data in the data warehouse into clean tables ready for consumption. We also helped them craft the specific metrics and KPIs needed by the business.
  3. A modern, general-purpose, and open-source Business Intelligence platform, Superset, that allows everyone in the organization to explore the data and create any charts and dashboards autonomously and derive insights.

After building the analytics stack, we empowered their teams so they are able to autonomously manage the data workflows and create the data models and metrics required for specific analyses. As part of this empowerment, we trained them on how to use the BI platform.

Also, Nova has greatly benefited from our flexible model, in which the technical support and training is provided at an on-demand basis. We are available to help any time, only when and where they need it.

The impact generated

The impact generated by Nova can be summarized along the two following dimensions:

  • Time savings from the business and engineering teams. Business teams no longer need to prepare and clean the data on Excel, they can just consume it on the BI platform (or on Excel itself, but the data is already clean and transformed). Also, the engineering team has gone back to do what they actually love, which is to build a great product for the users, as they don't need to spend time on manual requests for different teams.
  • Enhanced self-service in data exploration and consumption.They now have a fully flexible and powerful Business Intelligence platform which is more flexible than Mixpanel and provides a holistic view on the business.

The impact above translates into better decision making. The Nova team can now make faster iterations of their product and services, they can better serve their clients and users, and anticipate potential issues. Finally, as its CEO puts it: 

This is the typical decision that is not easy for many founders or for any CEO who is needing to balance the budget with these kind of expenses, but there is clearly an ROI that comes literally just a few months after implementing this change. - Ramón Rodrigáñez, Nova's CEO