“You’d be crazy to build your own billing system. Just get a subscription to Zuora.” — Zack Urlocker, COO

Company Zendesk
Industry Cloud Applications

The Customer

For a monthly fee, Zendesk provides virtual software that helps companies deliver stellar customer service.

The Challenge

They needed a billing platform that could handle subscriptions, give them top-notch analytics, and keep pace with their astronomical growth.

The Solution

Zuora offered a system that manages it all, and gives them the flexibility to innovate.

The Benefits

Zendesk added 30,000+ subscribers in three years.

“Zuora is the number one choice when it comes to billing systems.” — Zack Urlocker, COO

Zendesk's Story


Zendesk uses Zuora to manage thousands of complicated subscription relationships. Not only has Zuora made Zendesk’s billing a breeze, but it’s also enabled the company to focus on innovating new features and products for its fast-growing customer base.

Zendesk has the admirable goal of making customer service less of a headache. Their  cloud-based software helps companies centralize customer support, create self-service hubs, and communicate with customers efficiently. Plenty of businesses struggle with customer service—enough so that Zendesk grew from about 5,000 accounts in 2010 to more than 45,000 in 2014.

Like any growing subscription business, Zendesk wanted to introduce new plans and upgrade options to the growing customer base. But they experienced some unexpected growing pains.

The company’s homegrown billing system couldn’t handle the expansions, upgrades, and downgrades that customers were throwing at it. This made maintaining existing customers difficult, and the finance department was constantly tied up looking at invoices and re-updating information.

Plus, any time the company wanted to add on new features or packages, they had to lean on the engineering team to help. It cost the company valuable time, which they could have spent on building totally new products.

Zendesk also needed a simpler, all-encompassing analytics system. They needed to know how many customers were coming in and how many trials were in progress. And they needed to be able to measure indicators like average contract value, monthly recurring revenues, churn rate, etc.

The folks at Zendesk realized they needed a third-party billing system. “We didn’t want to mess around with some second-tier offering,” COO Zack Urlocker explained. They felt that Zuora’s experience in the industry and its list of top-name customers made it an obvious choice.

Now, Zuora has become their system of record. They have the flexibility to innovate and iterate with products, marketing, pricing, and promotions. And they can always see the details of any particular transaction, which makes finance super happy.

In Urlocker’s own words, “You’d be crazy to build your own billing system. Just get a subscription to Zuora.”

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