Customer success is on a steady path to becoming a fundamental pillar of any SaaS organization. As a result, it’s only becoming more demanding and fast-paced. The need for tips to increase the productivity of Customer Success team is more important than ever before.
So without wasting much time, let’s get into it!
7 Tips to Increase the Productivity of Your Customer Success Team
We have compiled a few expert tips to increase the productivity of your CS team. Let’s jump in!
1. Embrace an agile approach to CS
Even though the agile methodology was originally invented for software development, it is more than suitable for customer success.
That’s because the key priorities of CS more than overlap with the key principles of agile: prioritizing customer collaboration, taking a proactive approach, aiming for incremental improvements, and so on.
Adopting an agile approach to CS can help your team become more organized, stay on top of deadlines, and become overall more productive.
The good news is that you don’t have to reorganize your CS team to achieve this. You can start small by implementing relatively non-invasive principles of agile to positively impact your team’s productivity.
Sprints can be particularly effective. They help your team tackle their responsibilities in manageable chunks with clear deliverables, deadlines, and regular meetings for progress alignment.
2. Set up clear productivity KPIs
Efforts to improve your CS team’s productivity will only be successful if you can measure the tangible impact of your improvements. That’s why setting clear productivity KPIs for your team is extremely important.
Ultimately, the metrics you set up should measure your team’s performance and how it affects your organization’s broader business goals. The ones we recommend focusing on include the following:
- Customers health scores
- Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)
- Churn rate
- Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR)
All these metrics can help you track your team’s productivity because they’re among the first to take a hit if something is not working well in your team.
For example, if the productivity of your CS team is suffering for one reason or another, you might be failing to nurture the right customers. This will be evident by their declining health and satisfaction scores, up to the point where they churn, resulting in a decreased MRR for your business.
If you follow these metrics closely, you will be able to find these negative patterns early on and address them before they become a problem.
3. Automate as many workflows as possible
Few things can inhibit your CS team’s productivity quite like manual work. It’s time-consuming, inefficient, and prone to human error — not to mention boring. That’s why you should aim to automate as many manual workflows as possible to boost your team’s productivity.
The best way to do that is via a customer success platform that offers automation functionality, such as automated playbooks. These can help you automate workflows such as:
- Sending welcome and onboarding emails to your new customers
- Assigning a CSM to a customer account
- Reaching out to customers exhibiting churn-like behavior
- And so on
Automating these minute tasks will give your CSMs more bandwidth for workflows requiring coordinated manual input, boosting their productivity.
4. Take advantage of software integrations
One of the best ways to improve the productivity of your CSMs is to help them complete their tasks in as few steps as possible. Once again, that’s where a customer success platform can help. More specifically, a customer success platform that supports software integrations.
Integrating all the software tools your team uses into your CS platform will save your CSMs from switching between different apps and platforms to complete a task. This, in return, will save them time and reduce the probability of human error and toggle tax.
Another way to boost productivity is by leveraging technology. For example, using a speech to text converter can significantly increase the efficiency of your customer success team by allowing them to transcribe customer calls quickly and accurately. This means they can focus on providing excellent service rather than spending time manually transcribing notes.
The best CS platforms support integration with numerous types of software tools, including:
- Messaging tools such as Slack or Microsoft Teams
- Email platforms such as Gmail or Outlook
- CRM platforms such as HubSpot or Salesforce
- Billing platforms such as Stripe
- And so on
5. Focus on the right customers
A common reason for poor productivity within your CS team is your CSMs spending too much time and effort engaging with the wrong customers.
Now, that’s not to say that you should ignore a portion of your customer portfolio. But the thing is, not all your customers need the same level of care and attention. Those who are already in a late stage of their customer journey and are doing just fine don’t require more than an occasional check-in.
Meanwhile, your newly acquired customers and customers who are struggling with your product need you to keep a close eye on them. Taking care of these customers is what will make your CS truly productive and successful in the context of your wider business goals.
That’s because these are the customers that, if nurtured properly, offer expansion opportunities and can evolve to become part of your most loyal cohort of advocates.
With that said, you need to thoroughly segment your customer portfolio to determine who those customers are. As you can probably guess, the easiest way to do that is with a customer success software tool that allows you to create dynamic customer segments based on criteria and metrics of your choosing.
6. Build a CS Ops team
If you’re aiming to maximize the productivity of your customer success teams beyond the tips that you’ve listed, you might want to look beyond your team. More specifically, you should consider establishing a separate task force composed entirely of Customer Success Operations professionals.
That’s because CS Ops came to exist in the first place as a remedy to CS productivity challenges. With its results-oriented approach, CS Ops can benefit CS teams looking to scale rapidly.
The responsibilities of a dedicated CS Ops team include the following:
- Managing customer data, including customer health, renewal forecasts, and product adoption rate
- Maintaining CS processes, including playbooks, cross-departmental cooperation workflows, and customer handoff processes
- Maintaining the CS toolkit, including your customer success platform
- Monitoring the CS team performance across goals and KPIs
To put it simply, CS Ops takes ownership of your CS team’s organizational and administrative aspects to help it run smoothly. This allows you and your CSMs to focus more on managing and growing your customers.
7. Sometimes, just have a meeting
In this article, we covered very practical, results-driven methods and tips to increase the productivity of Customer Success team. And while all of them can be very effective, you should also make sure to add a more holistic approach to the mix.
At the end of the day, your team’s productivity reflects its overall dynamic and environment. You can invest in as many CS tools as possible and set up strict workflows. But if your team doesn’t feel like a team, it will be almost impossible for you to reach the performance goals you’re aiming at.
So, in addition to all the tactics we discussed above, be sure to put some effort into cultivating a healthy, productive team dynamic. In most cases, all it takes is a regularly scheduled meeting where your teammates can catch up, connect with each other, brainstorm ideas, and discuss the latest challenges or goals.
As the pressure mounts on customer success teams across the SaaS industry to perform, empowering your CSMs to stay at the top of their game is essential. Fortunately, boosting your CS team’s productivity comes down to only a few things:
- Investing in a powerful customer success platform that will help you automate tasks and take advantage of software integrations
- Rigorously following your productivity KPIs
- Focusing your efforts on the high-effort/high-reward customers
- Cultivating a healthy team dynamic
- And if necessary, adding CS Ops to your mix of capabilities
We hope you enjoyed this article about tips to increase the productivity of Customer Success team helpful! Try Nifty to take your CS team’s productivity to next level.
What is a customer success platform?
A customer success platform is a specialized tool that helps your customer success managers better take care of your customers.
Customer success platforms typically provide functionality such as a 360-degree overview of your customer profiles, workflow automation, reporting, and so on.
What is Customer Success Operations (CS Ops)?
As its name suggests, CS Ops is a sub-field of customer success that focuses on its operational aspects. These include managing data, overseeing cross-team collaboration, setting up workflows, maintaining the CS toolkit, and so on.
CS Ops teams are typically found in large SaaS companies with large customer bases or in companies that are looking to scale their CS efforts.
How do I choose a customer success platform?
To choose the right customer success platform for your business, you should consider the functionality it offers, it's pricing and the size of your customer portfolio.
A simpler, more affordable CS tool will be right for you if you're a startup or a smaller organization with a modest customer base. Meanwhile, if you're a large company with tens of thousands of customers, you need an all-in-one enterprise-grade CS tool.