Should CSM be closing the support tickets? This is the most common debate among SaaS founders. Before we get into it, let’s understand the key difference between Success Managers and Support Reps.
Customer Success and Customer Support
Customer success managers are the domain experts who endeavor to help the customer achieve their business outcome using your product. They are the ones who help you get to the desired business impact. Whereas Customer support teams are product and technology experts. The team deals with product-related issues and educates the customer about how the product works. They make sure the product delivers what the business manager has promised to the customer. They ensure the product works, operates and is functional.
Handling Support Tickets
A support ticket records interactions between a customer and a customer support team. It’s one of the channels through which a customer reaches out to you. When a customer submits any query, a support ticket is formed and shared between the customer and the support rep.
Whether the support ticket should be handled by the customer success manager or support rep entirely depends on what the support ticket is related to. If it is related to the product query, the support team handles it and if it is related to the business side of the product; it should be handled by the success team. For example- if the customers get in touch with a query like “How to use this feature?” or “This feature is not working “and etc should be handled by the support rep but if the query is” I have not been able to increase my conversion rates by using your product”, the support rep needs to get the success team involved.
It is very common for the customer success team to get into Quarterly Business Reviews, management reviews, and periodic health checks with the customer. These interactions, which can then a lot of times lead to some tasks which are related to product support, and then can translate into one or multiple product support tickets which are actually created by the success manager on the behalf of the customers for the product support rep to resolve. This is normal and should function like this. But should the support team comes across tickets where they identify the need of the success team, they should communicate and the success team should jump in. For example- It has come to the notice of the support rep that the customer has been trying to do 5 things and are not doing it the right way. The conversation must be immediately bubbled up to the customer success manager. This closes the loop and makes the entire conversation between success and support reps a two-way street. This will ensure business success. The support team needs to ensure the product function and the success manager have to see that the product gets adopted the right way, the right use cases are being nailed and business outcomes are been achieved.
So, answering the question of whether CSMs should close support tickets, there are always going to be some tickets coming to the support team that needs to be escalated to the customer success manager.
This communication between the support and success teams will ensure business success. For more information on how these two teams work in a two-way stream, check out https://customersuccessbox.com/blog/customer-support-vs-customer-success/