Recently, Health-e Pro added two new experienced school foodservice professionals to the Customer Success team. Renelle Leinbach, SNS and Sandra Meister, MS, RD, LDN bring to Health-e Pro a wealth of experience in nutrition and food service management. This move helps to solidify the company as more than just nutrition software, but a partner in helping improve food service departments, whether schools, catering companies, or management companies.

We sat down with Renelle and Sandra to learn more about their backgrounds, what they’re excited about at Health-e Pro, and where they see great opportunities for helping our customers as part of our Customer Success team. Read Part 1 here.

What has surprised you so far? 

Renelle: I hear all the time how grateful the customers are–”Thank you so much for helping me!” I’ve never worked with a software company that’s this hands-on and is so invested in the customers’ success. 

Sandra: I’ve been so thrilled with how welcoming and down-to-earth everyone at Health-e Pro is, how everyone genuinely loves their job and is supportive–the team has your back. In training, everyone has been helpful and makes me feel really confident. The onboarding experience has been awesome as an employee, so now I know how to make that onboarding transition for the customer go smoothly, too. 

Sometimes, when I go in to add a recipe to our database, I can see that Meg, our founder, has added recipes recently. You don’t see that anywhere else! Meg is in the software with us because she loves the software and it’s part of her vision–making sure foodservice directors have the ingredients and recipes they need in the software to be great foodservice directors. 

Renelle: That surprised me too! I’m usually on late because of my time zone, and I’ll send her a message and say, “Oooh, that looks good!” 

What has impressed you most about the software? 

Renelle: Having used other software, I loved that everything was in one spot in Health-e Pro. When you did a recipe, you had nutrition facts, links to ingredients, components, all on one screen. In other programs, you have to click all around to get that information. I had never used a web-based program before, but web-based is huge. Overall, ease of use. Health-e Pro is so much easier than anything else I had used. 

Sandra: The easy-to-use aspect. I like the color-coding system, too. When you’re using the software, it feels so good when it’s green! Also, the EZ Review. You can spend days working on binders for audits and with the EZ Review, you print it out, and you have everything you need for a Review. Having all that in one place saves so much time. Knowing that this team has so much of an audit background, that gives our customers so much confidence, in my eyes. 

What have you seen from customers? What have you learned from customers?

Renelle: You learn so much about people when you talk to them in this capacity. There’s every type of learner out there: some that want to see everything in front of them and some that want to do it at their own pace. I’m learning a lot about the ways people learn. It’s been neat to see the vast array of different people out there, hearing from all different sides of the country and learning what meals they’re serving from Florida to Wisconsin to California. I’ve learned quite a bit from my conversations with customers, telling me about their day or how they do things in their school district. I’ve been enjoying hearing how differently everyone runs their program, and those things help me be a better Customer Success coach. There is no one way to run a program effectively; each program is so unique. 

Sandra: I started at the peak of the Covid-19 crisis–the week of!–so what I’ve seen so far is that foodservice directors are resilient, they are flexible, they are creative, they are dedicated, and they care. They’ve shown with this crisis how they’ve been able to completely switch up their program to serve their kids and their community. That’s what has stood out to me. Even a month later when the stress is still high, they’re getting it done. They’re definitely our heroes. I don’t think they get recognized for that: how quickly they can adapt to feed their kids. 

What is it that you love about serving in the foodservice/School Nutrition space? 

Renelle: I have kids and I’ve seen them grow up eating school food; I love seeing the efforts that are out there. You can tell when the foodservice director prepares stuff that the kids like and when they serve fresh items. I’m vegetarian, and it’s rare to find schools that will cater to that. There are times they’ll have a really great vegetarian option or a salad bar. 

I love that these foodservice men and women start to recognize the kids. Now they know when my kids come through to give them three sides instead of the entree. I love seeing when the foodservice professionals connect with the kids because they’re feeding them. 

I’m big on nutrition and health; I want to stay involved in it. Not just saying “Here’s your lunch; eat it.” but going into the classrooms and showing them how to prepare these things. The school here has a school garden and during harvest garden they’ll chop it up and make a fresh salsa. Kids need to learn about nutrition; this basic stuff can really drive so much of their life. It can start at a young age and we can help focus on that and help get kids excited about trying new things and having healthier options. If we can start teaching kids nutrition at a young age, I think it will be huge. 

Sandra: For me it’s seeing the A-ha! moments when you’re educating a student about nutrition and food and health and you see they get it and that it piques their interest. That’s the most exciting thing for me. It’s important that kids know where their food comes from, to touch it and to smell it, and to have their hands in the dirt as an experience that will stick with them for the rest of their life. 

Thank you so much to Renelle and Sandra for sharing more about their experience and insights into the Customer Success Team. 

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