Time Management and the ever growing CSM To-Do List

Options
Thomas Fortier
Thomas Fortier Member Posts: 15 Thought Leader
First Anniversary Photogenic
edited August 2023 in CS Org Conversations

I'm sure there are many different and effective strategies that everyone employs to manage their time in order to execute all of the varied CS tasks required to meet our objectives. I love the way @Kevin Mitchell Leonor addressed a part of this earlier this month with creating account portfolio's. But once CSM's have their account portfolios, how are CS leaders helping their teams tackle time management, and helping protect their time?

In the age of machine learning & AI, the ever increasing push for more inputs from every client interaction can be incredibly time consuming. During a recent conversation with another CS leader, he mentioned how he mapped out all of the expected tasks, estimated time to accomplish each, and came up with an 80-hour week for his CSMs - needless to say, they went back to the drawing board at that point. I think we all assume that this is not a 9 - 5 job, but how are you helping your teams keep it realistic?

Tagged:

Comments

  • Will Pagden
    Will Pagden Member Posts: 99 Expert
    edited July 2020
    Options

    We are using tools in truth. Gainsight to be precise, we have gone quite granular in our playbooks and covered a large number of scenarios. Then estimated the time to complete each call of action. This is then heavily monitored. Hard to explain here, but happy to discuss further if of interest? 

  • Ronald Krisak
    Ronald Krisak Member Posts: 48 Expert
    First Anniversary
    edited July 2020
    Options

    @Will Pagden @Tom Fortier  If you set up a discussion on this topic, I'd like to be included.  I am expanding our CS team, and I would be interested to see how others set up/monitor the time/activities of their CSMs.

  • tjwwheel
    tjwwheel Member Posts: 18 Thought Leader
    First Anniversary Photogenic
    edited July 2020
    Options

    I think that this topic can also be tied back to @John Bosch post about CVM Ops. When we launched our CVM/CSM ops team, it helped to release some of the less strategic part of the job and definitely helped a good 5hrs per week of work per CSM. Things like QBR data Prep, keeping up with check ins, proactive support case auditing, etc. We also launched Salesforce Lightning + Einstein which is helping to consolidate all of our data from both our customer environments and our back end BI into one tool. Saves the little clicks here and there between interfaces, similar to Gainsight. 

    Obviously I think this varies industry by industry/Product by product. 

    If there is a discussion I wouldn't mind joining as well. We are starting to ramp our CSM team quickly and want to understand where/how your hours are being broken down. 

  • David Ellin
    David Ellin Member Posts: 170 Expert
    Name Dropper Photogenic First Anniversary First Comment
    edited July 2020
    Options

    I've found that many of the tasks requested of the CS team are not CS functions. Examples would include data gathering for QBRs/MBRs, support to RFPs, PM tasks, deal enablement (pricing and renewal prep documents), monitoring processes performed by other departments (to ensure on-time response/delivery), follow up with other departments, and many more).

    I found so many requests for tasks that were outside our purview that I ended up doing a full-scale RACI document that resulted in migrating over 36 tasks to other departments - where they should have been all along.

    In many companies - especially SMBs - CS can be a 'catch-all' for tasks not identified to sit elsewhere. The CS leader needs to be careful not to take on all of those tasks. Ultimately, it eats up time from doing what's important (driving strategic value for customers and their future success) and will require the leader to ask for more staffing that often can't be justified with ROI.

  • Adam Houghton
    Adam Houghton Member Posts: 7 Contributor
    Name Dropper First Comment First Anniversary
    edited July 2020
    Options

    @David L Ellin curious about your comment that data gathering for QBRs should not be a CS function? What is the role of the CSM at your company and in the case of the QBR, who is the owner?

  • David Ellin
    David Ellin Member Posts: 170 Expert
    Name Dropper Photogenic First Anniversary First Comment
    edited July 2020
    Options

    @Adam Houghton, at my former company, we had a variety of products and services including tech services (SaaS) and physical services (e-commerce order fulfillment and customer care/call center services). Each of those departments was responsible for providing their metrics, key initiatives, insights, trends, roadmap items, etc. to the CSM for QBRs. The CSM consolidated the information into our presentation.

  • Adam Houghton
    Adam Houghton Member Posts: 7 Contributor
    Name Dropper First Comment First Anniversary
    edited July 2020
    Options

    @David L Ellin got it, thanks and that makes perfect sense!

  • Kevin Mitchell Leonor
    Kevin Mitchell Leonor Member Posts: 248 Expert
    First Comment Name Dropper First Anniversary
    edited July 2020
    Options

    To be an effective CSM, well-defined CSM processes must be in place. If that is not the case, we must account for 20-30% of a CSMs time being devoted to hunting down information for the time being.

    the remaining 70-80% must be spent on customers, meetings, and process improvements. As we mature, we can scale down the process gaps time and increase CS account workloads