Re: How to Use HS for Customer Success - CSM

New Contributor



I am looking for a way to track Onboarding Tasks in Hubspot that gives visibility on status to my internal team and to our clients that are onboarding. I can't seem to find a way to do this in a simple fashion. It looks like my options are: 


1. Creat a deal for onboarding and have the various stages and associated tasks. This gives visibility internally, but I would have to have a separate project plan for my clients. 


2. Your project tool looks GREAT for this purpose, but it does not appear to have a function that would allow me to associate an onboarding project with a particular company and I don't want my internal team to have to hunt for this.  For external clients that do not have a Hubspot Hub, I think I can only share with them via a share screen session on calls. I can't find a way to download and send or share so they can access as needed. 

3. It looks like I can go old school, create an onboarding project plan spreadsheet and link to it in the company record. (Pin it to the top for internal visibility when in implementation and then upload final doc to stay with record). Email clients the spreadsheet. 


Has anyone found a simpler / more efficient solution? 


Thank you! 




5 Replies 5

Hey @jclarkattiled,


I've personally never used HubSpot for these purposes, but weighing in on the options you've outlined, I would go with the first option. Using deals will give you the flexibility to associate as you need, and also to keep notes and activities on the onboarding record (for the deal). Plus, in my opinion one of the best things about HubSpot is the flexibility that working in their existing record types (such as deals) provides; you can make the object whatever you need it to be. 


Sidenote: not sure how much this would help you, but the playbooks tool sounds like one you and your company might benefit from. Looks like it's only available with higher subscriptions (Sales and Service enterprise) but may help you organize your thoughts. Here's the doc on it too.


Hope that helps!

Community Manager

Hey @jclarkattiled,


I want to pull some other users into this conversation who may have more experience with this (thank you @Anonymous for the great points!)


@JonnyT & @briansweat do you have any suggestions for @jclarkattiled?


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Regular Contributor

We're using a separate "Implementation" deal pipeline for our new client onboarding.  Our implementation specialists are set up as "Sales Pro" users and they have multiple sequences to keep in touch with clients and roll-out content on a schedule that's easily consumable.


We were very impressed with the Projects tool during our HubSpot onboarding, but I don't recall it was integrated with HubSpot for us (at least at the "Professional" level).  We mostly work with smaller companies, so we're typically managing the timeline and milestones for them.


Some notes on how our implementation team uses deals:

  • Deal name is in the format "[Company Name] - [Sales Rep Initials]"
  • Deal owner is the implementation specialist
  • Deal amount is the price paid (always equal to the first year)
  • Close date is the date they purchased
  • Pinned note for the summary of the project with goals and expectations
  • Custom properties for milestone dates, with prompts when moving a deal through the stages
  • Most emails are sent/received through Outlook, and attach properly since we only have one "open" deal after the initial sale.  However, sales people usually have to click "X" when sending an email to a customer still in implementation.
  • Excel data files are attached to the deal
    • Email signature images get attached over and over again (eg., image003.jpg) ...need to report that one Smiley Happy
  • Phone calls are initiated in HubSpot, recordings are available
  • Tasks linked to Deals (and the primary contact) for all follow-up appointments
  • Third-party consultants are linked to deals, but that may cause problems with other, unrelated emails sent/received by other users.  Be sure to test multi-user/contact deal scenarios.

We're still evaluating Service Hub for our support team, but I think our implementation team will stick with "Sales Deals".  It's working pretty well for them.

Occasional Contributor

I've personally only ever used tasks and deals for internal use. Hubspot is built in such a way that the primary tool it provides for us to communicate with customers is via email. That is if you're needing automation. If I needed to do something where the status of a task was visible to a customer, I would use the workflow tool. Because the workflow doesn't have a way of using tasks as a trigger, you would need to use deals or tickets to make this work (as you were describing above). I would probably do something like this:


  1. Create an email template that will provide the customer with information about the deal/ticket (i.e. Name, Stage, Description, etc...).
  2. Set the trigger of a workflow to be associated with the ticket/deal. I would probably say every time it undergoes a stage change, enter it into the workflow.
  3. Send the email template with info about the ticket/deal stage to the contacts associated with it.


Again, I haven't ever done this before, but this is probably how I would go about it. It's a little bit of a hack job but I think it would work well. The client wouldn't be able to change anything on the deal/ticket, but it would at least keep them updated about it's progress.

Community Superstar

HubSpot does a wonderful job at marketing automation and sales enablement, and is still working out the kinks on service hub. However, as a CSM tool -- not a good fit. Here's why.

To each of your points.

-- Fake HubSpot Deals can be used for onboarding, but we've seen fake deals become more disruptive than helpful to the sales team using HubSpot to track real deals and tasks. Fake deals when used excessively can quickly clutter a HubSpot portal and make training for Sales Pro users more challenging -- i.e., more time-consumin and expensive.


-- HubSpot's Project tool is very basic. And while great for most use cases, 'very basic' means there's no way to limit visibility to specific HubSpot Projects or HubSpot Project Tasks. This presents challenges both internally and externally. In our case, our NDA would strictly prohibit client 'A' from having access to project tasks associated with client 'B'.

In order to share visibility into HubSpot Project Tasks one must grant access to the HubSpot Marketing tool. While we can certainly limit access to specific parts of HubSpot Marketing, it's simply not a good practice IMHO to give clients access to our internal marketing automation.

Furthermore, there are no permissions tiers when using the HubSpot Project tool. It's 'all-or-nothing' access which means all clients who are granted access will have unrestricted access to every single project that we open there. (not good)


-- Linking to a project plan spreadsheet from within HubSpot is an ok ole-school solution. However, most clients hate spreadsheets almost as much as math. haha


If we're going to link to a 'project plan' from the HubSpot Company record (pushed to appropriate contacts) and control access to that target project plan, we'd recommend linking to some sort of project in a project management tool (e.g., Basecamp, Teamwork, Trello, etc.). That way, we have complete control over both access and visibility.

Just a few thoughts. Hope they help.


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Hope that helps.