The BackBone of SaaS: Lock Down the Role of Your Customer Success Team

by Chris Arringdale Customer Success, Team Empowerment

Your customer-facing teams are important. Think about it. Whether it’s sales, service, success, or support, they deal with your company’s most precious cargo. The customers. Specifically, your customer success team could be confused in their roles since they deal with various business activities revolving around customers.

Stiffen up the backbone of your SaaS company. Allow Kilterly to help by identifying, expanding, and solidifying the role of your customer success team.

Define the Teams

Before you can effectively structure your customer-facing teams, you need to clearly define your teams’ roles. Customer service ultimately fields questions and explains what your customer can gain from the product. Customer support places the customer’s needs ahead of everything else to ensure they achieve their goals.

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Customer success takes it one step further. The prior two involve your customer interacting with a problem. Your customer success team should be able to address the problem before your customer can even notice it. That is the true difference. And Kilterly aims to provide the insights and actionable tasks for your team, so they are not stuck in limbo.

Now, there a couple of pools of thought when it comes to actually define ‘customer success’. For some, customer success encompasses the roles of service and support. Some view it as a subsidiary to the sales team as they are to support the contacts and prospects they bring in. Regardless of the two, customer success has overlapping duties.

Before you can effectively task your team with different clients and prospects, you need to understand the structure.

Construct the Teams

Since every customer is different, there’s no ‘right way’ to help your customers succeed. There is no set way to build your team, but Kilterly is designed to make that process easier, and to help you help your customers. In order to construct the perfect customer success team, you need to consider the following questions:

How big is your customer success team?

The degree of structure of your customer success team relates directly to how many members you have. If your team has fewer members, their roles will be extended because you simply need them to do more for the company. A larger team can provide an opportunity for a more defined hierarchy.

How many customers do you have?

This question is related to the prior. You could have a team of one and they can easily handle 40 customers, or you can have a team of 50 that is overwhelmed with 120,000 customers. You have to consider different workload variables and metrics, such as average time per customer support, and the number of customers to team members. Once you have an understanding of your customer demand, you can effectively scale your team.

What metrics is your team focused on?

Your team has a focus: customer success. But there is a lot that goes into it. Is your team’s primary focus on onboarding and activating customers? Or is it reducing churn and understanding why customers are leaving? Is it both? Customer success can be overwhelming because your team will more than likely have to shift their focus on a customer-by-customer basis. Therefore, the team leader must determine what metric you should focus on right now, which will then guide your team and alleviate pressure. Once the team has a direction, everything will fall into place.

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What are the resources necessary for your customers to succeed?

Interaction is essential to help your customer succeed, but having different resources at their disposal will boost success. Screencasts and videos are a great way to provide a thorough visual for your customers. If you’re at a loss, you can conduct some research or send out surveys, so you can generate ideas for future resources.

Solidify the Team’s Role

Your team is unique and the structure of your team depends on many factors. However, there are some universal measures you can implement with your team so you can solidify your processes. Scheduling regular meetings with your team to ensure the team has a shared focus is recommended. These don’t have to be daily. But a meeting at the beginning of the week can help task out different projects or place emphasis on a particular metric for that week.

Creating a fluid and flexible work environment helps as well. While your SaaS team will be deeply focused on their tasks, your customer success team needs to be able to communicate freely. More times than not, a team member has dealt with a similar issue, so asking for help is encouraged! That flexibility also allows members to close out of a group chat or task program to give their focus to a customer.

The saying ‘What’s good for the goose is good for the gander’ is very applicable for businesses. What is good for customers is good for the company as a whole. Looking for a solution to boost customer retention and combat churn? Contact Kilterly! We can help you get things back on track.

worker taking notes on different customer metrics

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