Glassdoor Rounds Out its Customer Success Organization with a Pooled CSM Model Using Gainsight

Glassdoor, one of the world’s largest job and recruiting sites, is the place where employees and former employees anonymously review companies and their management. The company generates revenue by helping businesses find new hires through job advertisements, job postings and employer branding.

Since its founding in 2007, Glassdoor has experienced incredible growth. In May 2018, Recruit Holdings, the Japanese company that also owns Indeed, announced it would acquire Glassdoor for $1.2 billion. As of early 2019, reviews for 770,000 companies in 190 countries around the world are listed on Glassdoor, and millions of people access the site each month to find information about jobs and companies.

Glassdoor believes in putting the customer at the center of everything it does. To that end, its Customer Success organization is committed to enabling customers to achieve their recruiting and employer branding goals using Glassdoor’s products.

“Ultimately, the Customer Success organization is charged with delivering the type of exceptional customer experiences that drive customer retention and growth. To that end, we want our customers to fully leverage our product features. This helps them realize the most impact possible, which in turn streamlines the renewal process on our end.”
Mark Kish, Senior Manager of Customer Success & Operations at Glassdoor

Challenge: Ensuring No Customer Goes Unattended

Like many growing businesses, Glassdoor has evolved its Customer Success organization over time. Rapid growth meant the company was gaining more customers than its Customer Success Managers (CSMs) could handle.

“Account loads grew exponentially overnight and things were in danger of falling through the cracks. We needed to standardize our engagement process and alert CSMs where to focus so customers didn’t go dark.”
Mark Kish, Senior Manager of Customer Success & Operations at Glassdoor

When the organization was initially launched in 2010, dedicated CSMs worked alongside along sales reps and account managers to engage with customers. Now CSMs are responsible for onboarding customers and building and delivering Quarterly Business Reviews (QBRs). More recently, the company added pooled Customer Success specialists to its Customer Success model.

Each dedicated CSM at Glassdoor delivers high-touch, personalized service to 20-50 enterprise customers on average. Obviously, this approach is only economically feasible across a manageable number of accounts. A pooled CSM model enables the scale to support a high number of SMB accounts, but introduces the risk of tasks getting overlooked. A combined model of dedicated CSMs and pooled Customer Success specialists is necessary for many businesses – yet requires the right processes and technology to work effectively.

Solution: Paving the Way for Success with Gainsight

Glassdoor equips its Customer Success organization to succeed with Gainsight. The combination of Journey Orchestrator, Calls-to-Action (CTAs), and dashboards driven by a Matrix Data Architecture (MDA) has positioned Glassdoor to enable its hybrid model.

By deploying a Gainsight CTA object within Salesforce, the Customer Success organization can ensure customers get needed guidance and assistance. CTAs are categorized into activities such as onboarding, renewal, business review and more. Within Salesforce, all CTAs are created under a single user. Once a CTA is triggered in Salesforce, the CRM system assigns the appropriate Customer Success specialist, which it communicates to Gainsight.

Using Journey Orchestrator, Glassdoor created emails that get sent to these customers. The emails include a Calendly link, so the customer can click to schedule a meeting with the assigned Customer Support specialist. In addition, Glassdoor automates a variety of other emails, such as those related to onboarding and poor NPS scores. In this way, Customer Success specialists and CSMs are offloaded of routine – yet essential – tasks, while Glassdoor can be confident that no customer goes overlooked.

Impact: Centralizing and Standardizing Performance Tracking

When customers take full advantage of Glassdoor’s features, they can drive more clicks and applications. As such, the Customer Success organizations tracks feature usage and how well its customers’ jobs are performing in the marketplace. In the past, the Customer Success organization had to consult multiple internal systems to figure this out. Now it simply refers to Gainsight.

Dashboards used by individual CSMs show how they are performing, while a manager dashboard shows the team aggregate. An additional executive dashboard shows the aggregate performance of each Customer Success leader.

Kish finds the MDA one of the most valuable Gainsight features. This enables Glassdoor to record performance metrics – such as feature adoption – on a daily basis. The organization can look back in aggregate, across teams and at specific CSMs and Customer Success specialists to see trends over time. For instance, once the Customer Success organization sets a goal for raising the feature adoption score, CSMs can push those features during their QBRs and everyone can see the score move in real time. In cases where the score declines, the organization can investigate to determine the cause.

By creating rules and using the MDA, Kish even made it possible to automatically calculate retention metrics. “Now our CSMs see this daily and weekly instead of waiting for the end of the quarter when the Sales Ops team previously delivered it,” explains Kish.

With Gainsight, the Customer Success organization also moved from the manual health scoring it executed via Salesforce to ensure a consistent, standardized health score. Instead of determining risk factors based on the subjective input of CSMs, Gainsight now sees an objective measure of risk across the board using the Gainsight Customer Health Score.

“Gainsight is an incredibly powerful tool. Use this sophisticated product well and the possibilities are endless.”
Mark Kish, Senior Manager of Customer Success & Operations at Glassdoor