The Sales to Service hand-off is one of the most important in your customer's journey. Starting off on the right foot with an onboarding process can make or break your new client relationship.
Getting this wrong makes all of the hard inbound marketing and sales effort to attract the ideal customer seem all for naught, and honestly, it leaves the new client scratching their heads, wondering what they signed up for.
Just like marketing-sales hand-off requires a shared understanding of what SQL looks like, sales and service must work together to ensure successful onboarding.
In this article, we'll share some specific HubSpot tools that streamline this handoff and create a good onboarding experience for both clients and your team.
Set Realistic Client Expectations
Before the handoff, get your sales and service teams on the same page regarding the best strategy to support this client. Doing so doesn't just allow you to meet expectations; you'll exceed them. So many companies struggle with the hand-off, above all else.
This doesn't require a lot of extra meetings and workarounds. On the contrary, with Hubspot technology, you can automatically get your teams in sync—communicating the same message with integrated resources and tools.
For example, Hubspot's service level agreement (SLA) tool in Hubspot Service Hub allows sales and service to create a contract between the company and the client regarding the service they will receive.
By reading the SLA, sales team knows the promises they can—and should—make regarding the service the customer can expect. At the same time, the service team knows the expectations communicated to the new customer and, most importantly, why that customer chose your company in the first place.
Service no longer has to apologize for being unable to meet an over-the-top expectation set in sales or feel the sales team is setting them up for failure.
Eliminate Silos with your CRM
Utilizing HubSpot as a whole business CRM brings your customer data and communications all under one roof, creating this coherent customer experience. Service can go back and view the deal record before onboarding to hit any points of concern or interest during that initial call.
Now, from the outside looking in, you seem like a company that has your act together and has the ability to meet your B2B customer's needs.
To get the most out of your CRM during the hand-off, use it to its full potential:
- Consolidate. Make it the source of truth for all teams.
- Link important documents. Client forms, communication, and resources should all be in one place.
- Use pin notes. These allow users to pin the most vital information to the top of the record and help you easily search for that information.
- Track communications. Any sales or service team member should be able to access these records to seamlessly serve the customer.
Use Automation to Improve Timing
Automation eliminates tedious tasks and maintains process flow. It can improve timing and remove the chance of human error. Both can strongly influence the outcome of a handoff.
Smart companies require their sales team to collect and document information relevant to implementation or service teams. With Hubspot, the sales team captures information on the deal (in the sales deal pipeline) in order to advance a deal to a Closed-Won stage.
From there, you can easily automate a notification to the service team member of a closed-won deal with all the relevant information they need—and the ball's in their court.
You can also automatically create a ticket in the client onboarding pipeline to help with the implementation/setup.
Get & Stay Organized
You work with many moving pieces during the sales to service handoff. You're responsible for managing everything behind the scenes while reducing friction on sales and service teams as well as that new customer.
The Hubspot Service Hub allows you to manage all of these shifting priorities and to-dos from one dashboard. Through it, you can assign which team member(s) will onboard which customer or step in the onboarding timeline.
Once assigned, that service team member instantly gets all the information they need to understand the new customer and knows what has already been done. Furthering the sales and service alignment, sales can highlight key elements in the record for service and service and can ask questions all within a unified system, so this information remains in one place.
Be Clear About Your Timeline
Immediately after the sales to service handoff, the onboarding team will have a list of to-dos as well. They need to ensure team members have access to software and can schedule the first kickoff meetings with the client.
Here, HubSpot’s Conversations inbox is a game-changer. Or if you already have a strong standard operating procedure in place, you can add Hubspot extensions to email that streamline this process.
Either way, this helps you track all communications, which will then automatically combine into a company record.
This allows you to clearly see the progress made toward meeting important deadlines, and you can use the same tool to set up a sales to service timeline.
Now, everyone knows who is currently speaking with the client and what tasks on the timeline have been completed.
Analyze and Optimize
When this initial onboarding is complete, utilize yet another of Hubspot's features to learn how the new customer experienced onboarding. HubSpot’s onboarding survey templates allow you to create a customer satisfaction survey in advance that is automatically sent once the onboarding process is marked complete.
This allows the customer to communicate while the experience is still fresh in their mind. To get a full picture, further analyze more objective service metrics using Hubspot's Service Analytics.
Apply this information to enhance the onboarding experience for the next client and fill in any gaps this client may have brought to your attention.
Starting Sales Off on the Right Foot to Close the Deal
Your new clients' needs should remain in focus throughout the sales to service handoff. You can streamline and enhance this experience through sales-service team alignment, clean communications and resources, clear timelines for the onboarding process, automated feedback gathering, and analytics.
Hubspot's unified platform has tools that help you manage the whole process, so you can delight new clients every step of the way and get the relationship off on the right foot.