For any business that depends on its clients to generate revenue and see growth, managing the business and technical relationship between them and their customers is becoming very critical. Customer Success may be a new and emerging term in the market but specialists such as Eddie O’Brien Microsoft, Global Head of Customer Success and Partnerships at Dropbox, have already mastered the art of Customer Success Management.
Although rapidly expanding its reach to every sector in the market, Customer Success Management is most widely used in relation with the software industry and specially the companies who sell Software as a service, also known as SaaS companies. The concept of Customer Success Management is still evolving which is why the scope, activities, roles and responsibilities, and metrics used to measure this parameter still has a lot of potential and needs to be discovered completely. Eddie O’Brien Microsoft, who has a degree in Accounting and Business/Management from the reputed University College Cork, Ireland, is known to be one of the pioneers in the field of Business Process Outsourcing solutions and Customer Success Management. Eddie has successfully worked with some of the biggest brands amongst the Fortune 500 consumer brands including Coca-Cola, Arthur Anderson, Microsoft, and currently Dropbox.
Customer Success implies to the relationship between a vendor and a customer post sales. For example, if a customer subscribes to software service and agrees to pay a monthly fee for the subscription, Customer Success Management entails that the people responsible for maintaining customer success try to retain the customers even when they hike their subscription rates gradually over period of time. This also includes ensuring that the customer isn’t being compromised because of the company’s or vendor’s urge to increase its fee.
Because of the originality and newness of the concept of Customer Service Management, alteration possibilities are high with regards to its scope, metrics used for measuring it, terminology used for defining it and the various associated parameters, and the reporting structure, however, there are a few major functions that a well-known Customer Success Management specialist such as Eddie O’Brien Microsoft takes into consideration. These are:
- Creating the service –This step focuses on the role where CSM specialists have to bring their customer on-board and make the initial sale.
- On-Going Support – Once a customer is on-board with the software solution, the software company has to assure on-going support with the solution they sold to the customer if any problem arises with it. This is also known as ‘technical support’.
- Knowledge enhancement – Product and service demos are a major part of this step. Once a vendor has sold a solution to a customer, they need to ensure that the customer knows the benefits and features of the product in details to make best use of it.
- Customer relations – This is the step which deals with maintaining and managing a cordial on-going relationship between the vendor and the customer.
Hence, it is right to say that Customer Service Management is the fresh phenomena every business should implement to keep their business relations with the customers growing, thus, leading to a growth in their revenue.