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How Do You Scale Your Customer Success Team as You Grow?

Emilie Johnston

New level new 😈.

We don't know who said it first, but whoever it was deserves MASSIVE kudos. Because there's nothing worse than rocking out your business and growing your team...only to find out you're dropping the ball on your customers. 😱

Don't get me wrong. Scaling your customer success team to keep up with massive growth is a great problem to have, but a problem no less.

If you're looking at serious growth this year (and we hope you are!) without sacrificing all those "little things" your customers love so much, check out these simple tips for no-sweat scaling.

Be Dynamic

We've talked before about the importance of speed in customer service.

When you're looking at massive growth, for example going from a max. of 5 customer success pros to a team of 20, it's critical to remove bottlenecks before they arise.

Start by setting clear guidelines for exactly what your customer team can offer, and how much they can spend, in order to make a customer happy. Grant your customer success pros some pro-level autonomy. You'll not only make them feel awesomely empowered to get the job done, but you'll also keep your business moving swiftly toward profit-driving activities (instead of wasting precious time on byzantine approval processes while your customer eyes up the competition).

Whether it's giving your teams free range to send flowers like Zappos, or instantly replacing a pair of lost glasses like Warby Parker, let your customer success pros know exactly how far they can go to wow your customers, without stopping for sign-off.

Upgrade Your Knowledge Base

A great knowledge base can do a ton of the work for you.

Take a good look at your KB entries and the traffic analytics behind them. Which pages are the most visited? Are your customers getting the answers they need? How can you make it faster and easier for them to get the info they want?

Ask your customer success team to review your KB and add step-by-step visuals like video, GIFs, screenshots and annotations to clarify any questions or instructions they're still getting asked about.

Not sure where to start? Check out these 5 Must-Have Visuals for Your Customer Knowledge Base.

Bring on the Bots!

You didn't think we were going to skip this one, did you?

Chatbots are taking the customer support world by storm. These friendly little human or AI-driven helpers can make it easy to handle more customers with less people by answering some of the most common customer questions for you, or taking a request when you can't be there to do it yourself.

Bots may be the latest and greatest in the wide world of automation, but companies like Zendesk have been offering smart helpdesk automation tools for years (10 years to be precise! Congrats, guys!).

Make a chatbot one of your very first new hires and make sure you automate any other oft-repeated processes. Simple things like setting up a shared searchable inbox and simple canned email replies to common questions can add up to some major time savings for your growing team.

(Psst, did you know CloudApp lets you share and search videos, screenshots and other visuals? Check it out!)

Ace Onboarding

When you've got a growing number of needy customers and a team that's stretched in every direction trying to make them happy, the temptation to dive right into hiring can be extremely hard to resist.

But hold up! Growth is about working smarter, not harder.

The last thing you want is to bring on a bunch of awesomely talented customer support gurus, only to leave them totally confused about what steps to take.

Meet with your current customer success team and get your team guidelines down in black and white. If you're super strapped for time, use video, GIFs or screenshots to help new hires visualize some of your more complex or multi-step processes. Visual onboarding beats a text-heavy (cough, cough snooze worthy) employee handbook any day.

And remember, your customer success team can drive sales for your business. Make it clear from the outset that this is a strategic role. Our friends at Basecamp let their customer reps take two hours a day for research, innovation, and creativity. Now that's working smart!

How will you make sure your customer team accelerates your growth? Share your ideas in the comments!

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