Customer Success Manager Job Description

Customer Success job description

Customer Success Management is a dynamic role, and job responsibilities can vary depending on a company's maturity, culture, and vision. With demand consistently outpacing supply, hiring Customer Success Managers is no easy feat.

Let's look at how to craft the perfect Customer Success job description to land your next superstar CSM.

Jump to examples of Customer Success job descriptions

Skills for Customer Success

We scoured countless Customer Success job descriptions and talked with leading executives to understand the most coveted qualities for CSMs.

Top skills we saw and heard:

  • Communication
  • Domain expertise
  • Curiosity (actively listens)
  • Problem solving (brings solutions to the table)
  • Relationship management
    • Professional yet sociable
    • Comfortable with difficult conversations
  • Collaboration and teamwork
  • Project management (stays organized)
  • Sales acumen* (depends on role)

A few things to keep in mind about your ideal CSM:

  1. What segment will they manage?
  2. How will they engage with customers?
  3. Where will they fit within your Customer Success team?

Customer Segments

There are many ways to manage a customer portfolio.

Whether distinguishing by revenue, company size, or some other attribute, each segment requires a thoughtful engagement model that delivers the most appropriate customer experience.

Customer Engagement Models

Popular approaches include:

  1. High-touch — actively managed high-value accounts.
  2. Low-touch — passively managed low-value accounts.
Most CSM teams employ one of these models, or a combination of both, depending on their mandate and customer portfolio.

High-Touch Customer Success

Typically reserved for "Enterprise-level" accounts, high-touch Customer Success involves significant hand-holding and consultative guidance throughout the customer journey. CSMs are expected to thoroughly understand a customer's business and cultivate deep relationships with stakeholders and end-users. As a consultative role, it also requires the ability to "course correct" and conduct difficult conversations if necessary.

A high-touch model makes the most sense when your business has some combination of high-value accounts, complex customer requirements, and customized solution options. High-touch CSMs may even make onsite visits to strengthen relationships and ensure clients are set up for success.

Top skills for high-touch CSMs:

  • Domain expertise — Understand and translate complex customer requirements and use-cases into measurable, proven outcomes.
  • Project management — Shepard internal resources and external stakeholders through key projects along the customer journey.

"In Enterprise, the best CSMs are obsessive about 1) product, 2) domain, and 3) the customer. Product experience forms the foundation, and domain knowledge provides that "last-mile" value to build truly meaningful relationships."
— Param Vora, Head of Customer Success, Freshworks

Low-Touch Customer Success

On the other hand, low-touch Customer Success focuses on the SMB segment or the long tail of low-value accounts within a business. It's a transactional motion and leans heavily on automation in order to scale, but CSMs are expected to identify at-risk accounts and jump in to solve customer issues when needed.

As you might expect, this is an inside role where customer interactions happen over phone, email, and web.

Top skills for low-touch CSMs:

  • Analytical mindset — Monitor KPIs and behavioral trends to prioritize at-risk customers in a large portfolio.
  • Written communication — Create engaging email campaigns, best practices, and training materials that deflect support tickets and enable success at scale.

Team Structure

Large teams thrive through specialization, while small teams and early-stage ventures need generalists who can wear many hats.

CSMs in large teams often fall into functional roles (think separate groups for onboarding, training, and even operations), while CSMs in small teams can expect broader responsibilities.

In addition, Customer Success can sit at different spots on an org chart. As a result, CSM teams that report to a Chief Customer Officer will operate differently from CSM teams that answer to a VP of Sales.

As you write your job description, think about your customer portfolio, engagement model, and team structure to attract the right kind of candidate from the start.

Customer Success Job Description

With your ideal role in mind, you're now ready to write your perfect Customer Success job description... so where do you begin?

Let's take a look at a couple of examples to kick start your next job post:

Enterprise Customer Success Manager

As a Job Title, you are responsible for partnering with our key clients to ensure they are continuously receiving and value from Company Name.

In this role, you will build strong relationships with stakeholders, and work directly with clients to understand business requirements and develop proactive solutions that ensure success throughout the customer journey.

Responsibilities:

  • Drive the post-sale journey of our key accounts, from initial onboarding to product adoption, expansion, advocacy, and ultimately renewal.
  • Develop a deep understanding of Product / Solution and translate customer needs into successful use cases.
  • Create engaging presentations that demonstrate value to stakeholders every quarter.
  • Identify upsell and expansion opportunities for the inside Sales team.
  • Work closely with Product / Solution teams and the customer to resolve enhancement requests and potential issues.

Qualifications:

  • Education
  • Account or relationship management experience
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills
  • Strong project management skills and technical aptitude
  • Willingness to travel periodically for onsite visits

SMB Customer Success Manager

As a Job Title, you are responsible for ensuring the success of our fast-growing small and mid-market customers.

In this role, you will effectively triage multiple priorities, working with a high volume of customer accounts and requests. You will evaluate how customers utilize their Product / Service investment and identify areas for improvement to maximize retention.

Responsibilities:

  • Analyze product adoption, customer feedback, and other KPIs to prioritize and engage high-risk accounts.
  • Handle a steady volume of email, chat, and phone conversations with a large customer portfolio across different lifecycle stages.
  • Publish effective training materials, faqs, and solution articles on our online customer knowledge base.
  • Create scalable nurture campaigns that decrease time to value and increase product adoption.
  • Help inform Product / Service teams about the drivers of churn and provide customer feedback to influence Product / Service roadmap.

Qualifications:

  • Education
  • Technically savvy
  • Data-driven and analytical
  • Excellent written communication
  • Strong time management skills
  • Comfortable managing a high volume of accounts

You may also want to consider including your tech stack, especially if your team relies on specific tools or Customer Success software for their day-to-day work.

Once you've crafted your job description, it's time to share it with the world. But simply publishing it on your website might not be enough.

Sources of Talent

It seems like everyone is scrambling to hire Customer Success Managers, and the pool of available talent is rapidly shrinking. You may need to get creative to maximize your chances of landing your next superstar CSM.

In addition to job boards and recruiters, take advantage of your professional network and Customer Success communities.

Recruit Internally

There are many benefits to hiring from within, and Account Management, Support, and even Sales teams can yield great CSMs. Remember, Customer Success sits at the intersection of many different roles and skillsets, so don't neglect to evangelize Customer Success Management within your organization.

"We've found that moving potential CSMs through Support has been invaluable. If you decide to hire externally, ensure that CSMs receive adequate product and industry knowledge, so interactions remain relevant to your customer's business."
— Erika Entz, Global Head of Customer Success, simPRO

Get to know other team leads across your organization and look for opportunities to promote your new job opening.

  • Perhaps a quick announcement during the next all-hands meeting?
  • Maybe a post on an internal work collaboration tool?
  • How about a post in a shared channel or employee newsletter?

Attend Meetups

Meetups are a great way to network with other Customer Success professionals in your area. Job announcements are usually part of the agenda, and it's a great way to meet candidates who are genuinely passionate about Customer Success.

PRO TIP!
Connect with the organizer and see how you can participate to the fullest. They may include your job post on recurring announcements or let your company host the next event for even more exposure.

Join Online Communities

Just like local meetups, online communities can be a great place to connect with your peers in Customer Success. Most of these communities have job boards where you can post your opening for all members to see.

Popular Customer Success communities:

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In today's competitive market, you'll need every advantage to find Customer Success talent for your organization. A well-crafted job description that attracts the right candidate is the first step toward hiring your next Customer Success Manager.

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