We recently sat down with Lead Product Manager Steven Lamb to discuss Addepar’s newest offering, Sandbox — a dedicated, low-risk environment for clients to test workflows, iterate on custom and partner integrations and try or test changes before implementing them into production. In this interview, Steven shares the process of bringing Sandbox to market, the important role clients play in product development and why he thinks it will transform Addepar user experience.
You joined Addepar six years ago. What drew you to your role and to Addepar?
Right away, I noticed Addepar was tackling a tough problem: how do you build a system that creates a consolidated, clear picture of a client’s full portfolio? In my career, I've been drawn to opportunities that address client needs in innovative ways. When I saw how Addepar was approaching some of the technical challenges in the industry with a new lens and Silicon Valley’s innovative mindset, I was excited about the opportunity to join.
What is Sandbox and why did you choose to build it at Addepar?
Sandbox is a dedicated space for clients to build new integrations, refine their end-to-end workflows and see the impact of their work before putting it into action. The concept applies to any Addepar client looking to try a new approach, process or technology.
Simply put — Sandbox was built because our clients needed it. At Addepar, clients share new concepts in our Ideas Portal, discuss offerings on our Client Advisory Board and participate in ongoing product research through our Addepar Pros program. Thanks to their continued support, we can bring products like Sandbox to life.
Similar to offerings from other enterprise SaaS vendors, clients needed the ability to manage changes securely and ‘pressure-test’ their processes. This feedback and more was the catalyst that shifted Sandbox from ‘should have’ to ‘must have.’
How does Sandbox add to Addepar’s larger multi-product strategy and platform experience?
At our core, we strive to connect the global investment ecosystem and drive greater outcomes for our clients and the portfolios in their care. Prioritizing developer experience and emphasizing platform interoperability is in our company DNA. The Addepar platform acts as the hub, and our open ecosystem approach enables our clients and partners to build on top of our robust APIs to leverage the integrations that work best for them.
Sandbox takes this vision one step further, enabling our clients to test-drive the most innovative approaches and ensure their technology stack works in harmony without disrupting the flow of business. This new product helps our clients ensure a seamless experience for their teams and their clients across different tools and applications.
Where will financial services professionals see the most impact from Sandbox?
Sandbox provides the resources and infrastructure needed to explore, build and test critical technology in a dedicated, low-risk environment. There are a number of users and use cases across an organization that will benefit — whether an operations professional is implementing a new data management workflow, a developer is iterating on a bespoke integration or an associate is onboarding and training a new employee.
Did you learn anything that will help you build future products?
Sandbox was driven by client ideas. To build it, we hosted conversations with a number of Addepar users to identify their needs and brought teams from across Addepar together to collaborate. We found that this internal/external stakeholder feedback loop was a powerful way to stand up a robust product. The main takeaway was: think like a client and build our product teams and strategy around that.
How will Sandbox help Addepar clients keep up with the pace of innovation?
Sandbox offers our clients the flexibility to isolate and experiment with new work streams or integrations to gain or maintain a competitive edge. I see Sandbox as an enabler to push the boundaries of innovation with the full confidence that challenging the status quo won’t hurt the bottom line, but rather will enhance it.
What is the most exciting thing about bringing Addepar’s solution to the investment management industry?
I'm most excited to bring to market something that clients need. Sandbox is just another example of Addepar's commitment to being at the forefront of technology. It's also true to our mission, which is to maximize the impact of the world's capital. Our executive team leads in a way that is agile, pivoting to make things simple, and adopts new technologies that allow our clients to prosper. We’re tackling an uncharted tech problem and staying focused on consistently delivering exceptional solutions to our global clients.
To begin exploring Sandbox, connect with your Addepar representative or reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.