View the TAM Handbook homepage for additional TAM-related handbook pages.
Customer Onboarding is the beginning phase of the customer lifecycle.
The customer onboarding phase is critical to getting a customer started on a successful journey with GitLab. This is our opportunity to ensure the customer achieves value and success from the start of their GitLab usage.
The onboarding process should begin when the customer opportunity reaches stage "5-Negotiating" for Booked ARR in order to introduce the TAM while we have high-touch engagement to close the opportunity. Once an opportunity that will qualify a customer for TAM alignment reaches stage 5, a Gainsight CTA will be created for the TAM Manager to assign the customer to a TAM. The assigned TAM should then start the onboarding process with the rest of the account team.
⚠️ NOTE: Please review the time to value metrics for target completion timeline.
The first step is completing the handoff from pre-sales to post-sales. This will ensure the entire account team is clear on the customer's status, and the TAM can be properly introduced to the customer.
Digital programs will automate the Intro to GitLab CS (what a TAM does) and onboarding enablement emails for all TAM assigned customers (Excluding PubSec). This will trigger for a customer when the onboarding playbook has been created and all emails come from a generic Customer Enablement @ GitLab address. Each email is tokenized with the TAM name and customers have the option to reply directly to the TAM to schedule a call or ask questions. Each TAM will also be cc'd on all emails sent to their customers.
Review email copy here (internal only)
Please review this course on Introducing the Technical Account Manager.
The kickoff call is the first conversation between the TAM and the customer. This is when the TAM describes their role to the customer, and starts their own discovery process to fill in details they don't have from the internal transition in order to start an effective engagement and create a success plan.
A kickoff slide deck is provided as part of the onboarding CTA. The goal of the Kick-Off call is to align on desired business outcomes, key upcoming milestones, and create clarity on our partnership as TAMs. The TAM should review and revise this deck in advance of the kickoff call based on what they already know about the customer, and what they are still looking to understand.
It is recommended that the TAM uses Customer Journey Spreadsheet to identify the customer's entry point and better identify the enablement needed. The spreadsheet aims to cover the multiple onboarding steps we see as TAMs, from the infrastructure build review, to the required migration steps and expansion to DevSecOps.
There are several enablement topics that the TAM needs to ensure are covered with the customer. These topics are added as emails to the Gainsight onboarding playbook and the playbooks & emails are bifurcated into SaaS and Self-Managed. The appropriate playbook will trigger based on the customer's subscription type. The options a TAM has for covering these topics are as follows:
It is also recommended to send the emails to multiple customer contacts to ensure the enablement content is received. As each email covers a separate topic and links out documentation, it is highly encouraged to send the emails versus covering the topics in calls wherever possible. Gainsight enables each email to be edited (via the playbook)before sending, ensuring that a TAM can personalize and make relevant each reach-out. For a short video on how to send the emails from the onboarding playbooks, please see this video (GitLab-only)
One of the most important points of discussion for the kickoff call is establishing the cadence call. The TAM should have the cadence call schedule determined with the customer by the end of the kickoff call, and a plan for the first cadence call.
⚠️ NOTE: While the TAM should be able to create an effective first iteration of the success plan at this point in onboarding, the success plan is a living document, so the TAM should continue iterating the success plan throughout the customer lifecycle.
Please review the success plan handbook page for more details on how to do this.
⏰ Target time: Within 30 days of customer start date
The first cadence call is typically the TAM's second conversation with the customer, and is when we can start to deliver value through our efforts as a trusted advisor. Please review the Tasklist for the 1st cadence callsection for the full list of what needs to be covered in this first cadence call
The completion of this second customer call marks the completion of customer onboarding, moving the customer into the adoption phase of the customer lifecycle.
The Time to Value KPIs are developed to help us understand key facts about how we are serving our customers, and how we could improve. Below are the processes for how TAMs should update and track their Time to Value KPIs. For definitions, please see Time to Value KPIs. For data visualization, see Customer Onboarding Dashboard.
Goal: 14 days
Time to Engage is the number of days between the
Onboarding CTA Start Date and the date of the first Timeline call or meeting entry.
Time to Engage Calculation = Timeline call or meeting entry Date - Onboarding CTA Start Date. Example: If the Onboarding CTA Start Date is 2020-01-01 and the first call was 2020-01-12, then the
Time to Engage would be 11 days.
Note: If the date of the first Timeline call or meeting is the same day as the Onboarding CTA Start Date,
Time to Engage = 0. If the date of the first Timeline call or meeting is BEFORE the Onboarding CTA Start Date, that account will be excluded from reporting.
Goal: 30 days
Time to First Value is calculated by taking the
Original Contract Date and subtracting
First Value Date, which is a manual input on the customer's Attributes section of the C360.
If Cloud License data is in Gainsight, the
First Value Date will be automatically populated by the system when
Known License Utilization meets or exceeds 10%. If Cloud License data is not available, it is the responsibility of the TAM to manually update the date field based on their best estimate.
First Value Date
Goal: 45 days
Time to Onboard is the difference between
Onboarding CTA Start Date and the date the Onboarding CTA is closed. For example, the
Onboarding CTA Start Date is 2020-08-15 and the Onboarding CTA was closed on 2020-09-18, the Time to Onboard would be 34 days.
Given the importance of onboarding to the customer's journey and our ability to drive success, we want to move through it as quickly as possible. If onboarding is delayed, either because of something on the GitLab side or the customer side, we need to document the reasons and take appropriate action.
The details around why onboarding is delayed should be documented in the following places:
If the delay is caused by the customer (e.g. disinterest, lack of engagement/"going dark") then the account has risk and should be flagged.
Onboarding Pilot: We are also piloting in Q4 of FY21 an onboarding experience for a cohort of customers in the Commercial book of business. For these customers, a Call To Action (CTA) is triggered within Gainsight
For both use cases above, a CTA is created for the TAM Manager if the TAM field is not populated. Once populated, an Onboarding CTA is kicked off for the TAM. The Onboarding CTA creates a Playbook with guided steps for the next several weeks.
The CTA guides the TAM through the initial customer engagement. The tasks and associated content are as follows:
Use the Gainsight TAM Dashboard and the Customer Onboarding Dashboard to manage customers currently in Onboarding.
While an Onboarding CTA is an automated process, it can also be created manually by going to the Cockpit, clicking
+ CTA and then choosing the Onboarding playbook.
During Onboarding, the TAM should also review the fields in the C360 to create a full picture. Here are a few examples: