The question about Account Managers (AM) and Customer Success Managers (CSM) is something that PropTech recruiters come up against a lot, not just from a candidates perspective but also clients too.
Every business out there will have employees that carry out these duties and it is the newer industries who are growing and developing fully established departments in both. Account Management is a role that has been around for years, companies have known the importance of an Account Manager as they focus on renewing, upselling and cross selling the products of the business. Customer Success is much newer and has mainly been driven for the SaaS industry and the noticeable success which CSMs have on a SaaS lifecycle. Although both roles are different, they carry the same end goal which is to keep up the revenue of the company and ensure customers are fully satisfied.
Both roles are extra additions of the sales team and therefore are both target driven however how targets are measured are very different. When it comes to PropTech Account Managers, they are usually targeted on the number of renewals and upsells they achieve and are more focused on KPIs. PropTech Customer Success Managers on the other hand have targets which are usually measured on an ROI basis and customer’s lifetime value which therefore shows customer loyalty and a positive overall experience
Another main difference between these roles is down to the proactiveness and reactiveness. PropTech Customer Success Managers have to ensure that they are working closely with the customer to ensure they gain a strong understanding of the customers issues, needs and wants so they can proactively reach out and ensure everything runs smoothly before any hiccups occur. However, when you look at the role of a PropTech Account Manager, they are much more reactive, they usually respond to requests and queries which the customer has when renewing their subscription/software/product.
When looking at the day to day duties both carry, there are many similarities however a PropTech Customer Success Manager will be involved with more technical activities as they are integrated into the implementation and onboarding processes, therefore due to the deeper understanding of the product they work with a smaller client pool. Whereas with PropTech Account Managers they are up to speed with everything however they are more sales focused and hitting targets is a huge responsibility of theirs.
Taking a step back and looking over both roles, they complement one another and a successful PropTech business needs to ensure they have both roles within their company. A PropTech Customer Success Manager takes on more of a consultative role and takes care of the customer life cycle. Whereas a PropTech Account Manager ensures there is a continual transaction happening through upselling and cross selling which is important for PropTech companies revenue and will be involved with customers for the short term.
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