4 Tips for Building a Smooth Handoff from Sales to Customer Success

4 Tips for Building a Smooth Handoff from Sales to Customer Success
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Transitioning customers from Sales to CS with care is crucial for starting off on the right foot with your business. This calls for a smooth account transition process. Following are the four tips for building a smooth Sales to CS handoff. From the article,’How to Master the Sales to Customer Success Hand-off’ by Emily Hackeling

1. “Set relationship management expectations during the sales process.”

Make sure your sales team lets your customers know what your post-sales relationship will look like before the transition. This gives them some idea about what to expect from the Customer Success team.

2. “Learn how your customer defines success.”

Every customer has a different end goal, so your team should define success differently for every customer. Find out each customer’s ideal outcome by asking them directly, and then dig into the details to include when you’re handing them off. It’s easier to instill a sense of confidence in your customers, and it certainly helps to know how they define “success”.

3. “The initial conversation between Sales and Customer Success teams might look like a game of 20 questions.”

No matter how big your teams are, relying on an ad-hoc transfer of information — i.e. a brief chat or a few forwarded emails — won’t cut it. Build out a list of questions you know you want to capture from every customer during the sales process. That way, you’ll have all the information you need and your customers won’t have to ask the same questions again and again.

4. “Sales and Customer Success need to have an open dialogue.”

Mastering the Sales to Account Management or Customer Success handoff takes careful planning, troubleshooting to find what works, and most importantly, a team that’s willing to work together. Sales vs Customer Success is also a commonly discussed topic. The answer to this is, when you find the strategy that works for your team, make it part of everyone’s mission to stick to it. Processes only work when everyone plays along.

Hand-off Process Problems: Information from customers (customer expectations) are not accurately conveyed to the relevant departments. So, when something goes wrong, teams push the blame to others when there is a problem because no one knows who is accountable.

Define a formula for Customer Success and also benchmark CS, as it helps Customer Success Managers to deliver unique value to their customers. CSMs play an important role in building customers trust and in improving customer experience. CS Metrics and KPIs help in tracking performance and progress. Customer survey questionnaires and customer satisfaction surveys help push the product towards constant improvements, in order to help customers derive more value.