GUEST: Jason Reichl, CEO of Go Nimbly
“Now, with revenue operations, we’re just at the cusp to actually break down these silos. The catalyst for that, is that the customers are demanding a different level of experience from B2B.”
In the bureaucracy of silos, customers can fall through the cracks.
Growth happens fast in SaaS companies. Every time your company doubles in size, it becomes a new organization with new problems. When companies don’t understand how to deal with organizational growth in a healthy way, they unintentionally protect the things that occur naturally, such as silos.
The problem with siloed teams is that each team only has access to a part of the full picture. This lack of understanding of the buyer journey leads to clunky handoffs and customer experience that’s full of friction.
Silos create gaps in the customer experience
Silos are created when the number of employees skyrockets, when the number of organizational units increases, when there are more degrees of specialization present, or when there are various incentives involved.
The catalyst for breaking down silos has come from customers demanding a different level of experience from B2B. When your teams function in silos, the customer experiences gaps in your processes. Internally, it feels like friction. But to the customer it feels like gaps, which can cause them to reduce their long term-commitment with you because gaps erode trust.
“The customer experiences gaps from your processes. Internally, it feels like friction, but to the customer it feels like gaps.”
Every time you look at sales data and see a lack in volume, velocity, conversion, or value, your customers experience that lack. The key to better customer success is understanding what the gaps are and how to solve them with scalability.
How to break down silos and close the gap
Remember that thing we said earlier about companies unintentionally protecting silos? Well, vanity KPIs are the definition of silo protecting; they basically incentivize one team to say “I don’t want to be tied to the failure of this team so I’ll hand them this more obtainable, less valuable metric …”
If you really want to break down silos to promote internal efficiency and increase revenue, there are two things you should consider doing within your organization:
- Change metrics.
If you care about margin, look at traditional SaaS metrics. If you care about finding the gaps that are harming revenue, look to revenue-momentum KPIs; these are milestones that are beneficial to the entire revenue operations team because they incentivize every team based on the growth of the organization.
- Build roadmaps.
Put everything up on a roadmap for your revenue, sales, marketing, and customer success operations teams. Evaluate why a goal is there, why you’re prioritizing it, and what you’re hoping to get out of it. One reason silos occur is because people lose sight of what’s being accomplished. When you use roadmaps, everyone cares about the same goals, and your go-to-market teams have a shared incentive to communicate more often.
It’s time for SaaS companies to invest in operations and customer success. When you break down silos you allow operators to focus their energy on the customer instead of internal bottlenecks. The customer assumes that role of stakeholder for your operations, and benefits from that shift.
“Invest in operations and invest in customer success, because those customers that bought are 100% the people who are going to buy more from you and you need to learn to leverage them.”
Being able to work across teams without the friction caused by silos means you will be able to do more, faster. It means that instead of focusing on roadblocks and fighting over resources, your teams can focus on fixing gaps that are impacting your customer experience.