4 Tips for Implementing a Customer Success Department as a New Startup

When you’re a SaaS startup, there’s always a checklist to run through, a guide to follow, strategies you have to implement, and customers that need you to be on top of your game. For SaaS, a lot depends on customer success. You have to know what customers want, the questions they ask, and how your products can help them achieve their goals, and that’s why you need a dedicated Customer Success department.

A customer success department solely handles customer success, including defining and implementing ways to monitor, track, improve and implement customer success strategies, including reaching out to customers to improve customer experience and anticipating problems. Here are crucial tips for implementing a customer success department:

Have a solid structure and a competent team

The department will need a leader-and no, the VP of sales or the CEO is not it. Have a director or customer success manager who will 100% focus on delivering value through customer success to reduce customer churn. Define the roles and objectives of each member of the department and tailor the job descriptions and listings to match.

Hire members with domain expertise who are well-versed with SaaS and customer-facing roles. Have an onboarding specialist, a technical lead, and a customer success manager as the first hires. While it might take a few new hires and a grueling onboarding for your team, your customer success department must be a single-digit hire; before getting to 10 employees.

Nail onboarding

Your customer success department should be fluent in customer success. Your new customers will be on shaky ground, and it’s your customer success department that lightens the process and gets the client settled in. Aim to onboard flexible yet practical experts who can quickly break the ice while working through your customer onboarding checklist. Have an onboarding specialist to cover the technical areas of your products and keep the department in step with the rest of the company.

Know your customers

Your Customer Success department should accurately map the customer journey from initial contact through onboarding and retention. Customer expectations must be fully understood and your product’s capabilities adjusted. A plan makes things a lot easier, and that includes how to handle unusual customers. Your department should have a playbook for handling customer success and issue resolution.

Automate where you need to

The customer success journey can be pretty complex and overwhelming, from managing incoming requests, collecting and analyzing feedback, cooperating, and implementing new goals as your SaaS business scales. Automating several parts of the journey allows your customer success department to keep up with the demand and consolidate and optimize technical functions while saving time on recurring tasks, not to mention avoiding errors and streamlining monitoring and tracking of your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

Final Thoughts

A solid, structured customer success department sets your business up for success and makes it much easier to implement customer success strategies to improve Customer Health Scores (Churn Scores) and your SaaS product. From the onslaught, building a robust customer success department should be a key feature of your growth strategy.

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