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Guide - 6 Min Read

Create a powerful Success team with Front

Your customers demand a first-class experience whether they’re in your high-touch segment or not. Front helps you personally ensure your customers’ desired outcomes at any scale, without sacrificing customer experience.

Once you’ve set your Success team up using our getting started guide, it’s time to think about a strategy for helping your team thrive. Front is built to be customized to your team’s needs, meaning you can design the workflow that helps respond personally to clients at scale, work together on complex requests, and get visibility into what you care about most. This is a guide about how to use Front to support and improve your Success team. 

Automate high-touch communication

Setting your team up for success means establishing a natural workflow that eliminates busywork and clears the way for higher quality connections with your managed accounts. Here are 4 actions that help streamline your workday. 

Assign owners to accounts

As messages flood into your team inbox, assign a specific CSM to the message. By giving each message an owner, duplicative work on the same customer is avoided, and each person knows exactly what they’re responsible for. You can even automate the assignments based on sender, content, and more – but we’ll cover that next. 

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Use rules to route messages to the right person or stay on top of SLAs

Rules are automatic workflows that you can set up to triage messages, route them to the right person, and save your team time doing the sorting. Have you ever wished you could automatically ensure a message from a customer is assigned based on a region, specific success manager as indicated by your CRM, or by how much they spend? Front rules allow you to customize the escalation path for any message, so you can immediately assign messages from certain customers to specific teammates. 

Rules also help you manage your SLAs – create a response time goal and have rules send messages on the verge of a breach to an “Urgent” tag or assign them to a teammate.

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Create email templates for common messages 

Though every customer has different needs, it’s typical as a CSM to find yourself crafting similar messages often, like EBR checklists or onboarding content. When it comes to this type of response or other FAQs, create and save a message template. Create them for yourself, your team, or your company, so that content tone and voice can remain consistent and time can be saved and spent on personalizing and customizing the message. 

Get reminders to follow up later

It’s important to never let your customers fall through the cracks. By hitting “snooze” on an email, or “send and snooze,” you can set up an automatic reminder to check in on a message. So if you haven’t heard back from a VIP client by tomorrow morning, the message will pop back up in your inbox so there’s no chance of you dropping the ball. 

Good account management takes a village

Team up to handle complex CSM requests, share information about customers, hone your messaging, and get visibility into how your team is doing.

View all communication in one place – your team inbox

Whether you work as a scaled group or by specific clients, team inboxes are a place to connect all your customer communication channels and view every inbound message in one place, as a team. This way you can see all incoming messages, know who’s handling what, and build a culture of visibility, accountability, and collaboration as you tackle messages as a team. 

Comment on emails to work together on messages

Need a second opinion on a customer request, or want to include a teammate in a conversation? Comment directly on a message with a simple @mention. This replaces messy forwarding chains and makes collaboration much more actionable; when you @mention someone, they can stay in the loop and continue to provide support as you go back and forth with the customer. 

Write important email drafts together 

We all know what it’s like to stumble or get stuck when writing an important email to a customer. With Front, you can write up an email draft and share it with a teammate when you need help finding the right words or tone to massage a tough conversation. They can then review, edit, and write the draft with you so there’s double the amount of thought put into your most important messages. 

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Use internal discussions for quick chats with teammates

So much time is wasted when people hop between apps to chat with teammates, only to return to their inbox to do the actual work. Internal discussions let you talk with a colleague or team casually, without having to go to a different chat app. And the discussions remain searchable, can be sorted into tags, snoozed, and all the other good stuff – so information is never lost.

Stay on top of customer messages and beat churn before it happens

The best way to hold onto customers it to know their experience intimately, and improve upon it over time. Tags and analytics help your team understand each customer and your impact on them, so you can turn those insights into action and reduce churn. 

Get visibility into customer experience with analytics

Your customers rely on you to get back to them quickly and meet their needs, no matter what. Front Analytics helps ensure that. See how quickly teammates are responding, which customers write in the most, when your busiest hours are, among other things. Then, adjust accordingly to take advantage of every opportunity to create a better customer experience. 

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Tag messages to prioritize work

Tags and channels in your team inbox are ways to sort your incoming messages by customer profile, urgency, project, etc. Some common tags for Success teams are:

  • Accounts at risk

  • Upcoming renewal

  • VIP 

Once you’ve done this, and created rules that automatically sort messages into those tags, you can view analytics on each one. By categorizing messages, you’ll get a sense of what your customers are experiencing, and you’ll be able to prioritize their messages instinctively. 

Tools and communication channels in a single view

Front offers a universal inbox, meaning all your communication channels – email, live chat, SMS, and more — as well as all your calendar, favorite apps, and more, are all in one place. No more need to switch between tabs or context-switch to get your work done. 

All your relevant tools and data in one place

Front has 50+ integrations that help you access all your favorite tools from Front. Whether it’s Gainsight, Dialpad, or HelpDocs, you can work faster and smarter by bringing data from other apps into your inbox. For instance, you can reference customer data as you’re responding to a message, or move an email to a task in your favorite project management software. If Front doesn’t have the integration already, you can use our open API to connect other databases and software so you never have to switch tabs and get distracted. 

Integration panel - Reference Salesforce gif

Keep learning

One Pager - 4 Min ReadRespond faster, 24/7: Five ways to optimize shifts in Front
Sometimes, customer support can feel like a game of telephone. When shifts change and issues pass to new teammates, key information is lost along the way — or even worse, conversations get stuck with teammates who aren’t online to handle them. Your team feels like they’re missing messages, and your customers are left hanging. Front’s new Shifts solution connects your team’s schedule with your support workflow, so it’s easy for teams working in multiple shifts to deliver a smooth customer experience. Conversations only go to teammates available to handle them, and you can distribute workloads evenly to optimize your entire team’s bandwidth. It’s easy to schedule across multiple timezones, so coordinating a global team has never been simpler. The end result? Your customers get the fastest response possible — 24/7. 🗓 Never let a message slip through the cracks (in your schedule) Most of the time, keeping track of who’s on what shift is easy to forget. Conversations are assigned to off-duty teammates by mistake, which leaves customers with urgent issues waiting too long for a response. With Shifts, it’s quick and easy to set up your team’s schedule, and Front takes care of the rest to help you minimize wait times for your customers. Assignment rules skip off-duty teammates automatically, so conversations won’t sit in their queues and put your response time service levels at risk. 📈 Measure performance with greater precision Especially when your team is distributed across multiple regions, getting a clear picture of response time performance can be a challenge. These insights are key to improving your team’s efficiency over time, so attention to detail matters. Setting specific shift hours for each teammate makes Front analytics more accurate, so you can reliably spot opportunities for improvement. Each teammate is measured against the specific hours they work in their local timezone, rather than a single set of business hours, for more precise metrics. ⚡ ️Optimize response time with load balancing Shifts works with Front rules to get conversations into the right hands based on specific skills, clients, or other criteria. Together, they enable your team to consistently conquer the queue, even on your busiest days. Now, load balancing rules make it easier than ever to manage high volume. With load balancing, conversations are assigned to the teammate with the most bandwidth to handle them (and are held in a queue if no one is ready). Custom conversation limits ensure messages always go to the person who can respond fastest, even if some agents are still in training. 🚀 Help new teammates ramp up faster Shifts and load balancing help you keep your support workflows up to date with your growing team. It’s simple to add new teammates to Shifts when they come on board, and if you manage team scheduling in another tool, Shifts can be updated through the Front API for smart scheduling behind-the-scenes. You can also set lower load balancing limits for new teammates to ensure their workload stays manageable, so your customers won’t suffer if they take longer to respond per conversation. As they get up to speed, you can increase their limit to match your more experienced agents. 🌍 Set up teams in other timezones for success Shifts and rules work together to make sure conversations are only assigned when a given teammate’s business hours start. It’s less overwhelming for your team — and a better experience for your customers. Instead of coming into find a queue of assigned messages from customers who have been waiting for hours for a response, your team can start fresh when their shift begins. You can even set when assignments should stop before a shift ends to make sure your team has enough time to wrap up before they go offline. ✨ Coming soon in Front Together, Shifts and load balancing empower your team to stay on top of their work and respond to customers as quickly as possible. With accurate reporting to share with internal teams and customers, you can make informed decisions to keep giving better service. Activate the Shifts add-on on your Front plan for $10/user in the coming weeks. Load balancing, as part of Front’s advanced rules, will be available to all customers on Pro plans. Keep an eye out for when these features are live in the app, and get in touch to see them in action!
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One Pager - 4 Min ReadImprove customer experience with Front
World-class customer communication starts with well-organized internal processes. If your inbox is a mess, or your messages are scattered amongst people, customers will feel the chaos through longer response times, less thorough responses, or an impersonal experience. These 5 features — signatures, tags, SLAs, rules, and analytics — are proven ways to create a seamless system for your team to manage customer messages. Personalization at scale When your customer receives a ticket number rather than a reply, they feel like one of millions rather than one in a million — no matter what follows. Front has multiple ways for you to manage messages so your team doesn’t get underwater, and all your customers still feel like VIPs. Here’s a couple ways to give them all the white glove experience they deserve: Create multiple signatures to help create a personal, and credible sign-off that shows there’s a human on the other end rather than a robot. Adding multiple, unique signatures to your team’s toolkit allows for personalization that scales.  Create message templates for your team to use. Think of these as saved message templates for your most common responses to customers. When you save a message as a message template, anyone on your team can use it in a single click, and spend their time personalizing it rather than typing out a common reply.  Organize messages with tags Team tags are ways to categorize and prioritize messages. They’re similar to folders, but aren’t intended to house messages that eventually get forgotten (we see you, ‘save for later’ folder ). Rather, we like to create tags that are correlated with an action, like the following: VIP 👑 – for your largest or biggest customers who require immediate attention Urgent 🔥 – to escalate messages that demand immediate attention Feedback 💙 – a place to gather and respond to both positive and negative customer feedback When a message is in a team inbox, anyone can add a tag. In an ideal world, all messages in your team inbox are either assigned or given a tag so that your team can focus and manage their time better.  Route messages to the right person with assignments Assignments give every message a clear owner so they can be handled quickly and with continuity. Rather than letting messages sit in a team inbox — and fall behind as new ones come in — assign each message to the person best fit to handle it, and rest assured that it’ll be taken care of. You can even automatically assign messages to people and make sure loads are balanced with rules — which is conveniently coming up next in this guide!  Rules prioritize messages for you  Rules automate the administrative task of routing messages, looping relevant people in, or responding to FAQs. They follow a “When _____, if _____, then _____.” For example:  When: there’s an inbound message If: the inbox is [inbox name] and from an email address that contains [@domainname.com] Then: Add tag [select tag] You can customize rules in a variety of ways to fit your team’s needs: Time-based rules – Like SLAs, or after-hours rules that automatically send a message template to let your customers know you’ll get back to them first thing in the AM Routing rules – Routing messages from a specific customer, or that include a specific keyword, to the correct tag or assignee Archiving rules – Archiving spam, document sharing email updates, or project management tool updates Tagging rules – Tagging messages that include a specific keyword or are from a VIP customer to an urgent tag After hours rules – Sending a message template to messages that come in after hours  Dream big here – there are countless rules to create that help your team save time.  Create SLAs to improve response times  A Service Level Agreement (SLA) is a goal or agreed upon amount of time for businesses to respond or resolve client messages. With Front’s SLAs, you can ensure that goals are met and no customer gets left behind. Setup is guided and easy, and there are some key features that help prevent breaches before they happen: Customize your escalation path by sending messages that are at risk to a “breach warning” tag or even alerting an “SLA” Slack channel. Front Analytics reports on your SLA success to show how your team is performing, help set realistic goals, and motivate your team to improve. Create multiple unique SLAs for different criteria like account value or client contact groups, and Front will automatically apply the right SLAs to the right conversation. Front’s SLAs are the guard rails your team needs to ensure every email is handled on time and every customer has a great experience with your team. Track progress and improve with analytics Whether you’re motivating your team or strategizing how to reach goals, it always helps to back things up with data. Front analytics give you success metrics on team and individual performance, plus customer experience. You’ll be able to view and create reports on: Resolution time Team performance Inbox performance  Load balancing Specific customers
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