Customer Success, it isn’t Customer Experience. (at least not yet)
There is much talk across the customer community as to the rise of Customer Success and for some, some confusion as to how this now affects Customer Experience.
Going back more than a few years now, we had a similar situation with Customer Experience, What Does it Mean to You?, as more and more companies adopted the term Customer Experience, but for roles across Operations, Analytics, Marketing, Process Improvement etc.
Customer Success is becoming significantly more prominent across the job boards due to the rise of tech, cloud based and SaaS (Software as a service) organisations. Due to the model, contract and usage of SaaS, software and technology licensed products and services, users and adoption, customer success was born; a role which typically is a mix of skills including; training, knowledge management, UX (user experience) client services, product management and account management. See more here from Process.st in What is Customer Success, who said ‘you don’t need customer success when you sell a bar of chocolate!’
The Customer Success team typically is seen within a software B2B (Business to Business) environment, where the team will be effective in a post-sale capacity, responsible for a client database and the successful on-boarding, ongoing delivery of software and services. They are normally the conduit between the client and the business, including product management and user experience (UX) team and are tasked with building and establishing a relationship with the client, to understand the user and business needs, helping them get the best (success) from the product, all with a view of driving additional loyalty, acquisition, retention and growth.
The Customer Success Manager will train, develop and nurture the knowledge and understanding of their users and wider business stakeholders, to get the best from the tools and technology, feeding back and liaising with the business re tweaks, or user, product developments which might better serve their clients.
Of course, if the term Customer Success is adopted by leaders and business, who believe it embodies their vision, away from the above, then it may, as it did with customer experience, start to dilute, or stretch the skills typically required for a career in customer success. At the moment, a Customer Experience Director and a Customer Success Director are two very different roles, the later would generally need a technology led background and would not suit your ‘a typical’ Customer Service Director, or CX Director.
What do you think, have you seen a different type of customer success role, or had a different experience? Please do let us know.
If you are looking to hire, or find a new role across the Customer landscape; Customer Success, Customer Service, Customer Experience, Customer Insight, Customer Contact etc, then please do give us a call and see how we can help.