By: Katie Levy, HigherEchelon Lead Salesforce Consultant
Salesforce is currently the world’s #1 customer relationship management (CRM) platform, and with good reason. It’s used by thousands of businesses and organizations with a variety of goals and use cases and can be used to do everything from engaging customers with relevant digital marketing, launching ecommerce, providing great customer service, empowering teams to work efficiently from anywhere, growing businesses smarter and faster, and much more.
At HigherEchelon, we use Salesforce to manage everything from employee onboarding to employee performance reviews, purchase requests, internal and customer-facing projects, recruiting efforts, sales and business development, past performance tracking, and much more.
It’s scalable, cloud-based, and powerful and customizable enough to meet almost any business need. But how do you know if it’s right for your organization? Let’s explore a non-exhaustive list of benefits and considerations when evaluating implementing Salesforce, and should you choose to use the platform, our team of implementation experts is ready to assist.
Salesforce is designed to not only provide a significant number of features out of the box, but also is highly customizable. Using point-and-click tools, built-in UI/UX features, and automation, Salesforce can quickly be tailored and implemented to meet many use cases, streamline business process, and help organizations become more efficient. But the platform also supports complex code, integrations with other systems, and much more.
With such a flexible, customizable platform, it can be easy to build in too much customization. Plus, some customization and integrations have limitations that need to be understood and addressed in the early stages of design. Additionally, it can be easy for organizations taking on new implementations to try to do too much, too soon, overwhelming users with too many features and processes to learn and fully utilize.
Working with an implementation partner like HigherEchelon can help your organization determine how to prioritize needs and get the most out of your Salesforce implementation at a pace and level of customization that is most effective.
2. Cloud-Based Functionality
Implementing cloud-based solutions is all the rage these days, and with good reason. CRMs that run on physical, on-site servers can limit connectivity and make it difficult for employees to access company data off site in a secure manner. Salesforce runs on the cloud, meaning that it operates out of data centers available to users over the internet. Cloud-native software provides more flexibility and accessibility to users and makes it easier to scale to support a growing team. As a result, organizations gain access to on-demand computing resources and can optimize business without worrying about provisioning and maintaining physical infrastructure. Additionally, Salesforce invests heavily in cloud infrastructure security; as a software as a service (SaaS) consumer, built-in mitigation of a wide swath of threats is a significant benefit.
Typically, accessing a cloud-based tool like Salesforce requires an internet connection. For physical locations without a stable connection, accessing resources can be challenging. However, there are ways to access Salesforce data without an internet connection, and our team of experts can assist in working through this challenge with any organization. In fact, we are helping the U.S. Army do this for its recruiters!
3. Salesforce Technical and Training Support
Salesforce provides multiple avenues for users and organizations to get help, skill up, and learn from each other. The Trailblazer Community provides opportunities to ask questions related to everything from how to use a specific feature to how to create new fields, write formulas, and build automation. Community events provide ways for Salesforce customers, consultants, and more to connect. Trailhead provides self-guided learning opportunities for everyone from absolute beginners to seasoned Salesforce pros, along with recognized credentials.
As is the case with any technology implementation, problems can arise. Although Salesforce provides a dedicated support team, automated technical services may not provide as rapid a response as a dedicated support team, which could impact organizational efficiency. However, Salesforce implementation partners like HigherEchelon have experts at the ready to handle technical issues on your behalf. Most of our customers choose to implement a support contract with us while their technology teams come up to speed on day-to-day operations within Salesforce.
4. Overall Cost and Pricing
The Salesforce pricing model allows organizations to pay per license, ensuring the correct number of licenses can be purchased, maintained, and scaled. Additionally, licenses aren’t one-size-fits-all; different license types provide flexibility based on the access and features different users need to have available. This gives organizations flexibility, and the ability to right-size licensing budgets based on required feature access.
Although Salesforce has a wide range of capabilities and offers a scalable pricing model, additional users and products come with an additional cost, as does ongoing customization, particularly if code is involved. In order to get the most out of your implementation, we recommend planning for a base application and then multiple supporting applications, so an individual user can access as many pieces of functionality as possible. This way, your organization can leverage the platform and save on purchasing additional software tools in the future.
Partnering with a Salesforce implementation specialist can help your organization identify, plan, and implement cost-effective, long-term solutions to optimize your investment.
5. Many Products for Many Organizational Needs
Salesforce is much more than a sales tool, and much more than a CRM. From sales to service, marketing to commerce, analytics to integration, even sustainability, there’s just about guaranteed to be a Salesforce product that meets any use case in any industry. And then, there’s the AppExchange, allowing companies to build and share their own apps built on the Salesforce platform. This means regardless of the use case, odds are, it’s been solved for before.
While Salesforce has a wide range of functionalities and tools that businesses can use, it can be challenging and time-consuming to choose the right tools and implement Salesforce without help. To save time and streamline the implementation process, it is best to trust a Salesforce implementation specialist who understands the ins and outs of the platform.
Contact our Salesforce Implementation Team
Like all CRM platforms, Salesforce comes with benefits and things to consider, but overall, this software provides distinct and unique benefits to any organization. If you are interested in improving your organizational capabilities, a Salesforce specialist can help. Contact the HigherEchelon team today to learn more about Salesforce and where it can be implemented to improve your business.
Client Review: 5/5 ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
The knowledge and understanding of the SFDC architecture is exceptional. They were able to quickly identify and implement a safe, effective solution for a problem that we had been struggling with for a long time. The communication was excellent throughout, and the commercial engagement process was fair and collaborative.
– Retail client, public AppExchange review
Watch a case study video of Salesforce work we did for Yulista Holding, LLC: