Customer Success | 6 MIN READ

Chief Customer Officer vs. Head of Customer Success: What’s the Difference?

Chief Customer Officer vs. Head of Customer Success: How do these designations differ in terms of duties, roles and responsibilities? Let’s find out here.

Simran Mohanty
Dec 3, 2020

Chief-Customer-Officer-vs-Head-of-Customer-Success

What stays common between each member of your customer success company is the need to satisfy a hungry customer. Now many such designations and roles are designed to look after the specific needs of a customer. Though all of them have their distinct boundaries of responsibilities, people somehow get confused with some titles. One such that we are talking about is the difference between Chief Customer Officer and Head of Customer Success.

Before we dig into the differences, let us know some of their similarities first. Both strive to bridge the gap from a company’s point to interact with a customer. Both want to bring a smile on the client’s face. And on similar lines, both want to see an ideal prospect convert to a loyal or raving fan. Now, these were some bullets on their commons, why don’t we put a magnifying lens on the uncommon ones? 

Roles and Responsibilities of CCO 

Chief Customer Officer vs. Head of Customer Success

Chief Customer Officer is a relatively new term in the CS space, but it is accelerating in its popularity. This can be happily reckoned as the newest customer-centric position added in the C-suite. This position does have the required credential to completely revolutionize the industry and pack a punch in several ways. Let us see how:

Collaborates cross-company agreement to deliver the highest value to the clients

As a Chief Customer Officer, one of the primary responsibilities played by him is that of collaboration. It is their duty to partner with the other teams, mainly marketing and finance, and gel up quickly. 

Once they do that, they determine who the target audience is and which are the customers to invest in. Not only that, they discuss amongst the companies and simmer to a mutual investment decision. And this decision should be of the highest impact, benefitting both parties. 

Drives accountability through cross-company metrics and data

One that tops the chart is teaming up with the chief executives and the rest of the C-suite members to identify the useful metrics that can be used to tracking customer interactions. Aside from this, they delve into the facilitation of the development of the accountability action chain. 

This primarily is all about researching and understanding the theme of customer loyalty and better establish the approaches to implement this research. Additionally, they work with the leaders on reinforcing recommendations for recognition. This is done with a vision to drive the cultural change forward. 

Establishes metrics for defining the relationship with customers

It all goes in vain if you don’t have the real-time validating tools to assess your performance. That is where metrics come in handy and serve the purpose. A CCO digs into the relevant metrics for tracking – it could be customer behavior or the number of tickets too. 

Then, they find ways to reach out to the customer in instant routes. This mainly takes place via the help of social channels. Long story short, they develop on the simple metrics to manage more customers and create a united podium for taking needed actions. 

Comes up with a common approach and process for driving the workforce 

A CCO facilitates the working together as a team and willowing the siloes away. Not just that, but they are programmed to instill the discipline of the much-needed process updates. Further, they aid in the change management of the organization. On the corollary, they identify the operational cross-functional alliances as well. 

Roles and Responsibilities of Head of Customer Success 

Roles and Responsibilities of Head of Customer Success

Onboard new prospects

As the Head of Customer Success, one of the most important tasks that they take up is customer onboarding. It is their job to walk a customer through the best features rendered by the company that will help them achieve early value. 

One of the essential facets of onboarding is showing the clients the shortest path that can lead them to value and derive a return on investment (ROI). Hence, it is on the Head of Customer Success to design one such stellar customer onboarding framework that does all the talking. 

Follow up on new renewals 

One that keeps up with the recurring revenue is the customer renewals. In simpler words, this accounts to be the lifeline of a SaaS company as it is no new news that most of the revenue comes through your current clients. 

The Head of Customer Success follows up on the existing month renewals to steer away from any last-minute glitches. Without a timely follow-up, you stand a chance to lose a customer right away and pilling the churn rates

Embolden upsells and cross-sells.

Upsell, Cross-sells, and upgrades fall in the same package to drive growth and boost up the revenue bar. These campaigns also augment the overall lifetime value of your customer. 

When the HCS sees that an ideal customer is rooting for an upgrade, he or she instantly tries to sell more to that person. When I say sell more, it means that they market on what additional benefits a customer can find with that upgrade. 

Yes to Customer Advocacy 

It is no surprise that the Head of Customer Success works on a one-on-one basis with the clients. Given that is the case, they have a higher chance to build greater customer rapport and influence the customer base. Customer advocacy comes into play when they themselves act as cheerleaders for the business. And put into simpler words why the customer should join hands with the. 

Well who knows, a satisfied customer might not only keep the churning quotient at bay but also garner more referrals. And we all know how fast the ‘word of the mouth’ referral technique works in the customer business right? 

That’s a Wrap 

Whichever role it is, be it Chief Customer Officer or Head of Customer Manager, all that matters at the end of the day is the happiness of a customer. As the customer is the king in the business, they decide on whether to stick around with you or pick your competition instead. Although there could be many differences in each of the designations as discussed above, one that stays common is the satisfaction of a customer. 

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Simran Mohanty

Simran hails from the content marketing backdrop with extensive knowledge in blogs, articles, and technical whitepapers in the non-fictional domain. She uses her 'gift of the gab' to explore new possibilities on her way and to make an exquisite impact on her readers. In her spare time, she likes to read journals on artificial intelligence or play with her cute kittens.

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