How Kizen Innovated To Fill A Market Gap and Elevated Their Deal Cycle

  • Industry: CRM & Marketing Automation
  • Services and Frameworks: SOC 2, ISO 27001, HIPAA

Location: Austin, Texas
Date Founded: 2016
Number of Employees: ~50
Working with Rhymetec: March 2022


The Company: Leading The Way in CRM, Marketing Automation, and AI-Powered Workflows

Kizen started with the vision of providing a CRM and a marketing automation platform that work seamlessly together. Their platform filled a gap in the market by going beyond the legacy tools and integrations traditionally available to sales and marketing teams. They have helped scores of companies around the world save valuable time and increase the ROI of sales and marketing. 

They provide companies across many industries—including insurance, retail, and healthcare—with a data platform and AI-powered automation that streamlines sales and marketing, HR, IT, and operations. In a savvy move that capitalizes on current developments in tech, Kizen recently expanded its use case of LLMs. Their latest features leverage AI to enable self-healing data pipelines and predictive analytics on customers’ data, providing decision-makers even sharper visibility and insights.


The Challenge: Scaling Security and Compliance For Market Expansion

Kizen emphasized the importance of building and maintaining a security program to safeguard customers’ data and create trust between the company, its customers, and future prospects. Additionally, they wanted to ensure compliance with both regulatory and voluntary standards in their industry. Because they handled data in the healthcare space, they needed to achieve HIPAA compliance. 

As Kizen grew and sought to reach more customers and expand into broader marketplaces, they needed to fulfill voluntary standards like SOC 2 and ISO 27001. Not having a SOC 2 report was becoming an obstacle in the sales cycle, as companies are increasingly requiring their vendors to show evidence of SOC 2 compliance.

Kizen wanted to be able to proactively provide third-party evidence of the strength of their security program before prospects even asked for it. For a fast-moving company with the vision of integrating the latest technologies into its platform, finding the bandwidth to focus on security and compliance in-house was an obstacle. This led Kizen to partner with Rhymetec’s experienced security team to help streamline their security and compliance journey. 


The Solution: An Abundance of Security Expertise Funneled to a Single vCISO For Kizen

Kizen started using a compliance automation platform that was an excellent tool for kick starting their compliance journey. However, they found they needed more hands-on resources and services to meet their goals, such as penetration testing for their SOC 2 audit. 

This led them to Rhymetec’s vCISO service. Rhymetec pinpointed the exact security controls relevant to their company that would also overlap across various standards. They started with SOC 2 and then went on to complete ISO 27001 in an estimated half of the time it would have otherwise taken.

This demonstrated the advantage of engaging a team of security experts with a deep understanding of the frameworks and how to customize templates and policies to their unique needs. Rhymetec’s team interpreted and explained what the controls meant and how they applied to Kizen’s software development. Getting feedback from someone who has worked with hundreds of clients across different industries was invaluable. 

“I’ve seen a lot of value and a big advantage in working with a team with experience across different clients and environments.” 

– Chuck Goss, VP of Engineering, Kizen

Rhymetec’s security team acted as a partner to Kizen in proactively offering additional options tailored to their needs. Instead of just enacting a predetermined set of tasks that could be used across different companies and industries, Rhymetec worked hard to understand Kizen’s individual needs and provide options from there. 

“We see Rhymetec as a partner embedded in our team…There was more of a partnership in suggesting changes and improvements.” 

– Chuck Goss, VP of Engineering, Kizen


The Results: More Valuable Conversations With Prospects and Elevated Sales Processes

The results from working with Rhymetec unblocked sales by having the necessary security certifications and standards. Being able to proactively show prospects their SOC 2 Report was pivotal, and it created time for more valuable conversations:

“The first priority was to remove that barrier in the deal flow. Now, whenever people see the certifications, they stop worrying about security. It stops that conversation, and we can move on to more valuable conversations.”

– Chuck Goss, VP of Engineering, Kizen

Additionally, compliance eliminated the time Kizen spent on filling out onerous security questionnaires. Their SOC 2 Report provides all of the answers prospects need about their security, making more time to focus on solving real problems for their audience.  

Rhymetec helped Kizen find the critical balance of honoring the standards in a defensible way for an audit while also making security measures practical and sustainable for the business. “We’ve done it in such a way that people aren’t really impacted,” said Chuck Goss, VP of Engineering at Kizen. “Security doesn’t have to be onerous and impact people’s workflows, as long as you craft the policies and think about the workflows as you’re doing it.” 

Partnering with Rhymetec enabled an approach to security that kept productivity in mind and prevented security measures from impacting daily business workflows and operations. Rhymetec ensures Kizen maintains a posture of continuous compliance as they continue to grow and expand into new marketplaces.

“For a small team like ours to be able to get and maintain the compliance levels that we have – we couldn’t have done it successfully without Rhymetec.”  

– Chuck Goss, VP of Engineering, Kizen