What You’ll Learn About Customer Success OKR
After you’re done reading this, you should be able to create your own Objectives and Key Results that match where you want your team or organization to go. You’ll learn:
Why Customer Success teams benefit from OKR
A great OKR example
The key parts that make up an OKR
Why you should focus on outcomes instead of outputs
… and more OKR examples for Customer Success
Why Customer Success Benefit From Using OKR
Customer Success teams’ main priority is ensuring that the company’s customers are succeeding with solving their problems. Something that OKR can help with.
First, take a look at 1 great example of a Customer Success OKR and talk about what makes it great.
A Great Customer Success OKR Example
Objective: Achieve our best satisfaction score to date
Key Result 1: Increase 7-day avg. satisfaction score from 4.5 to 4.8
The Key Elements To A Great Customer Success OKR Example
Let’s go over why the example above is a great OKR example for a Customer Success team. Overall, a great OKR should follow the SMART guidelines of being:
OKR Criteria: Specific
This example is concerned with a satisfaction score. These are usually measured after a customer has interacted with the Customer Success team. The example is very specifically tied to this score, and not just overall satisfaction, which is a lot more intangible.
OKR Criteria: Measurable
Because we chose a dedicated metric, it’s a lot easier to check the box that the OKR is measurable. We measure satisfaction based on the satisfaction score and agree that’s how we evaluate customer satisfaction. There are plenty of other metrics to include, but for now, we focus on this one.
OKR Criteria: Achievable
It’s important to have achievable OKRs. They should always be ambitious, but nothing is more demotivating than unachievable goals. A rule of thumb is that the chance of achieving a Key Result should be around 50% from the start. If you reach 70% and above, it’s considered a success.
OKR Criteria: Results-oriented
Being focused on results is a very important aspect of OKR. It’s so important, that we’ve dedicated an entire section to describing why you should focus on outcomes over outputs below.
OKR Criteria: Time-bound
A key part of defining a goal is also defining when you’re expecting it to be met. For OKR, your goals are usually divided into different cycles and your goals should of course be reached within the end of the cycle.
Focus On Outcomes Over Outputs
As a Customer Success team, it’s easy to get caught up in focusing your day-to-day work on the outputs of what you do. Doing X gets us Y. But you shouldn’t do that.
OKRs are meant to force you to think about your desired outcome. Then activate the people in your team and democratize how you’ll get there. The key way to turn output-focused goals into outcome-focused goals is to ask “why?”. “Why do we want the output you’re describing?”.
“Receive 10 reviews of our onboarding assistance” is a goal focused on outputs. Why do we want that? Well, because it’ll get us to a state where we have more successful customers. Voila, know you have your ingredients for the key results. To give more context, let’s dive into more Customer Success-focused OKR examples.
An OKR focusing on Customer Success response time
We both know that Customer Success teams usually love to focus on their ability to respond to customer inquiries fast, as it reflects the overall efficiency of the team.
But, it’s important to still keep your eye on the ball and make sure that other important metrics aren’t dropping as you improve this one. If we were to engage in an OKR that was focused on response time, we could formulate it like this:
Objective: Reach new stellar team response times
Key Result 1: Maintain a level of 95% answered tickets within 24 hours during the last 14 days
Key Result 2: Achieve avg. rating of 4.5/5 of the same tickets
OKR around team skill development
It’s important to keep developing the skill within your team. As such, including an OKR about team skill development often makes sense in Customer Success teams.
Objective: Develop stellar skills within the team
Key Result 1: Reach 100% success rate on team members passing Reforge Customer Success course
An OKR example for optimizing team processes
In operational teams like Customer Success teams, optimizing processes is one of the things that can go a long way. Doing repetitive tasks can for some people be tiresome while others love it.
OKR can help you challenge the way things are done and how they can be optimized. For this use case, let’s focus on the different tasks each ticket requests a Customer Success agent to do and formulate an OKR like:
Objective: Optimize time to first reply
Key Result 1: Decrease avg. time to reply from 2 minutes to 1 minute
This post has hopefully given you additional insight into how Customer Success and OKR can work together to achieve business goals.