How I Found My Dream Career in CS Ops

Alex Goldklang
Senior Analyst, CS Ops

Interview Highlights:

  • You need to be comfortable looking at data sets and asking important questions. 
  • One of the biggest challenges is managing individual expectations while you focus on the bigger picture.
  • Experience in sales ops could make you a great fit for a CS ops role.

My name is Al Goldklang. I'm a Senior Analyst for Customer Success Operations at Melio. 

I joined Melio’s CS department fairly early, but being early gave me opportunities to start documenting processes. I soon realized that I wanted to focus on improving internal operations rather than working on external accounts.

Right now, I am the only person at Melio solely focused on CS Ops.

What makes CS Ops an amazing career?

CS Ops is a worthy career for people who get fulfillment from enabling coworkers to succeed. My motivation comes from working on things that enable others to have big wins. That was the magnet for me when I started, and it still is now.

The job rewards those who are naturally curious. You need to constantly ask whether workflows are in place because they’re the best way to perform a task, or because they’re the ones people have grown comfortable with. 

I also know that my role brings great value to the company. Customer Success Operations has a significant impact on revenue. For example, the business will sometimes spend $90 on a lead who doesn't generate a single dollar. Whereas the ones that buy and then stay active due to the efforts of the CSMs and CS Ops repay for what you spent on acquiring them–and more.

What qualities do you need to succeed in CS ops?

The biggest qualities you need are related to project management. Some key examples would be: 

  • Organization
  • Attention to detail
  • Ability to prioritize 

Prioritization is front and center almost every day, because it helps you understand the impact of pain points. You can assess how an issue affects work and how widespread the problem is.

You also need to be comfortable looking at raw data sets, spotting trends, and/or proposing conclusions and hypotheses.

I'm currently looking at all the accounts the CS team manages, to decide whether or not they should be in a marketing drip campaign or be managed by a human. This involves a lot of data analysis and critical thinking.

Get the Catalyst newsletter

In each issue, we promise to deliver you carefully curated articles on all things customer success.

How can CS ops candidates make themselves more desirable to hiring managers?

CS Ops is similar to Sales Ops. There are opportunities for people who really understand Sales, CS workflows, and what it’s like to work with a CRM. This knowledge was a huge help for me as I transferred into CS ops, and I think it would be useful for somebody with a similar background.

You also need to be passionate about coming up with hypotheses and then digging into them. And this can be much more than just analyzing raw data sets. For example, you could shadow phone calls to see if there was some way you could make a 25-minute call into an eight-minute call, and then standardize that playbook. 

What career skills can be transferred to CS Ops? 

When working in sales, I learned how to ask broad questions to understand exactly what people want. This is a great way to uncover the problems people are really trying to solve. This skill has been useful in CS Ops because it helps me understand what our teams really need. 

Managing expectations is another transferable skill. This is important because even though I support Customer Success, I end up interacting with people from multiple teams, and I need to balance the expectations of each group.

This isn’t always easy because everyone thinks their needs are the first priority. They don't realize that I'm building an overall picture of the situation and that they are just a single part. 

For example, a team might have a tool that would solve their problem in the short-term, but doesn't fit our long-term vision. In this case, I would let them have their say to ensure I understand the issue. Then I can explain how the longer-term picture looks and why the tool they want isn’t necessarily the best way forward.

What part of the job do you like the most? 

I am very curious, so the best part of my job is gaining visibility into our long-term business strategy. Through my role, I have a seat at tables I didn't even know existed before.

About 
Melio

Our mission is to keep small business in business. When we started Melio, we wanted to build more than an efficient Accounts Payable tool. We wanted to build a service that helps small businesses keep up with business. A B2B payments experience that not only saves time but also significantly improves cash flow. A payment workflow so simple it helps businesses focus on their customers, not their back office.

Have a customer success story?

Submit your customer success story in the form below, and get featured on Chatalyst!

Submit Your Story

Submit a Story

Nevermind