You've closed a sale. Congratulations.
You're now at the tail end of your sales cycle, and you need to start thinking about transferring the account over to the customer success team and beginning the onboarding process.
Well, we feel you – we have been there. It can be chaotic transitioning from the sales process over to the customer success process, but it doesn't have to be tough. And if it goes smoothly, you're more likely to have a successful customer who will not only grow with your business, but potentially refer in new deals.
Just when you think you've crossed the finish line, don't drop the ball. There is one more critical step to go.
The good news is there is a simple sales to service handoff process that will work for just about any industry and size of business. Here's how it works:
Most of your account information will probably live in your CRM. Your customer success manager will need to work closely with the sales reps who are working on the account, so it's important that you know what information they'll need out of the CRM, whether it be Salesforce, Hubspot, Pipedrive, Copper, or any other place where customer information is stored.
However, there is probably a lot of other information in the CRM as well, which can make finding what is needed to launch and onboard the account more difficult for your customer success manager.
To ensure the transition goes smoothly, your customer success manager will need to know some specific items about each account. The more you can nail down in terms of content at the beginning, the smoother this whole thing will go.
This is where your planning for this handoff will pay off. By having all of these items at the ready, this transition should be painless. Once you've gone through the process a few times, it will become second nature.
Of course, if anything changes in the account after you've completed the handoff (the company's employees double in number, for example), just set up a time to get the account information over to your customer success manager again. You don't want any important details falling through the cracks.
Now that you've noted down the main points about your customer—who they are, why they purchased, etc...—it's usually good to put a quick internal meeting on the books so that their new CSM can ask questions about the account.
In the meeting template here, we take the above questions and expand on them slightly, giving you more opportunities to learn about the customer.
Because this is a meeting template, of course you should customize it to the types of information that is relevant to your product or service.
In addition to talking to your internal team about the handoff, you'll want to let your customer know they're in good hands. For a larger deal, ideally this is done live, in a meeting or on a call, but a lot of business is done via email, and transitioning an account can be done that way as well.
And even if you do share the name of a new customer success manager during a meeting, following up with an email that has the contact information of their new CSM is always a good strategy.
If you're curious what such a handoff email might look like, here are two handoff email templates you can use as a starting point. One is more formal, and the other is more casual:
It was a pleasure speaking with you today about [Product/Company] and I'm glad we were able to get the opportunity to offer this service to you. In order for us to best serve your needs, [new customer success manager's name] will be taking over from [sales rep's name] to work with you going forward.
You can reach her at [email] or at [phone number]. If you have any questions, please let me know so I can get them answered for you!
Your Name Here
I hope you're doing well. I wanted to give you a quick update on your account and let you know that we'll be handing it off to our customer success team going forward.
We've been really happy with the work we've done together so far, and I'm confident that they'll do an excellent job of continuing to help you achieve your goals.
Your new main point of contact is [new customer success manager's name] and you can reach her at [email] or [phone number]. She'll be in touch soon to schedule your launch call.
I'm still here if you need me. Please feel free to reach out if there's anything else we can do for you!
After being in business for a while, it can be tough to keep up with on-boarding new customers. We've laid out the Sales to Service Handoff Template so you have a foolproof plan on what needs to happen when you have a successful sale.
The handoff from the Sales Team to the customer success team after a deal has been closed, and covers how to transition an account from the sales process (how we sold it), into the customer service process (supporting them and making sure they're getting value).
Sales is about more than just closing deals; it's also about having a seamless handoff to your customer success manager who will provide valuable support and guidance for your customers.
It's important not to lose sight of this transition, or the customer will not feel like they are getting great value.
When you follow these tips and tricks, you're well on your way to setting up your customers for success.
A downloadable checklist, plus tips for preparing for your next important meeting.