Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a critical component in helping firms to give outstanding service to their consumers.
With the correct CPQ implementation in place, businesses can better understand and address the demands of their consumers in a timely and cost-effective manner.
As a result, businesses will be able to build strong client relationships and achieve rapid expansion.
Salesforce is among the most popular CRM platforms. It is deployed by approximately one-fifth of the world’s corporations, according to research by the International Data Corporation.
This IT platform has been a popular choice for businesses across the world because of its ease of use and wide range of strong capabilities.
Choosing a Salesforce implementation partner enables you to avoid needless risks during the implementation process and perform the installation in the most effective manner.
Table of Content
- 1 Salesforce Implementation: A Step-by-Step Guide
- 1.1 Step 1: Determine Your Objectives and Assess Your Risks
- 1.2 Step 2: Identify the Members of Your Team
- 1.3 Step 3: Select an Approach
- 1.4 Step 4: Establish a Timeline for Implementation
- 1.5 Step 5: Handle Salesforce Customization and Integration
- 1.6 Step 6: Upload Your Data to Salesforce
- 1.7 Step 7: Evaluate the New Salesforce Product
- 1.8 Step 8: Launch
- 1.9 Step 9: Organize Employee Training and Support After the Launch
- 2 Conclusion
Salesforce Implementation: A Step-by-Step Guide
Step 1: Determine Your Objectives and Assess Your Risks
It’s not a one-and-done process to integrate Salesforce into your company. It takes a long time to complete and must be broken down into smaller activities.
You need to know what your company’s risks are and what your goals are before you can take any action. Among the many considerations, you should make are the following:
- Determining what type of version of Salesforce is best for your company in terms of functionality and cost.
- Analyzing the potential dangers that may arise.
- Taking look at your hardware and storage capacity.
- Calculating the time taken to implement the new system.
Step 2: Identify the Members of Your Team
Salesforce installations may need a variety of team members, depending on the scale and amount of time left before the release. In order to have a successful project, you should have the following people on your team:
A) A high-level sponsor
This is a member of the team or an executive who is involved in the project from start to finish. Most of the time, it’s the person in the firm who was in charge of developing and publicizing the Salesforce solution.
B) System administrator
After the project has been completed, this person will continue to monitor and maintain the server-side of things.
In order to better understand the responsibilities of a Salesforce system administrator, it would be beneficial to review the available resources on Salesforce administration.
C) Project manager:
It is the project manager’s primary role to arrange and facilitate communication among team members in order to guarantee that all of the clients’ needs are met.
D) Power users:
Your product should be tested as soon as it is available to make sure that the demands of your customers are met and every nitty-gritty detail of daily life is taken into consideration.
These users may need additional in-depth training and help on fundamental questions about Salesforce before contacting the Salesforce administrator.
It is likely that a Salesforce implementation specialist or trainer will use Salesforce.com content and develop specific Salesforce documentation for the job at hand.
This is to make it easier for new users to get up to speed on the new features that are being released and to provide them with the necessary instructions.
Step 3: Select an Approach
Although the Agile approach has been extensively adopted in the corporate sector, there are still a number of more traditional methods in use. Among the most prevalent methods for managing teams and projects, we would name Agile Scrum and Waterfall.
Even if you have no prior knowledge of the development processes, you will understand the term “Scrum.” When it comes to project management, this is the most common method and is far away from creating high-level estimates that may or may not come to fruition in reality.
Iterations in Scrum are minimal, and features and add-ons are rolled out gradually.
Salesforce fits this description. New features are released alongside the main ones, and as time goes on, more and more features are added.
One recent example is the addition of data integration and consolidated user profiles to the Customer 360 app following the original release.
It helps them recognize the need and value for the desired enhancements if they continue improving their solutions in this way.
Prior to beginning the project, cost and time calculations are done to ensure that the project will be completed on time and on budget.
It is deemed obsolete because it gives less flexibility and maneuverability for development, as the progress is frequently hampered by unforeseen challenges, and a large number of interdependencies that might be addressed go undiscovered.
When a team enters a given phase, they begin to encounter difficulties. Despite its widespread use in large corporations, Waterfall falls short when it comes to approaches that provide the greatest benefit to their users.
In order to get the most out of a selected methodology, firms typically mix the approaches, sticking to the Waterfall before the project begins to approximately estimate the time and money that need to be spent and then planning the roadmap of outcomes using Scrum or other Agile methods to be more adaptable over the course of implementation.
Step 4: Establish a Timeline for Implementation
A) Make a Strategy for Execution
Depending on your needs, goals, and development methods, the Salesforce implementation process may comprise the following:
B) Requirements Gathering:
Defining the business needs and objectives must come before any project can get off the ground. This information will help you prevent unexpected changes in the process and guarantee that the final product meets all requirements.
C) Initial Installation and Configuration:
The Salesforce instance must be set up and adjusted in accordance with specifications. It begins with employing the standard Salesforce functional and adjustable settings before resorting to Apex custom code development in order to address more complex business logic.
D) Updating the Salesforce Database with Existing Data:
As a business owner, you must guarantee that the data from your previous systems are migrated to Salesforce as soon as possible.
Data migration is more than just moving information from one location to another; it also entails properly mapping fields and objects to ensure that everything you want to use in Salesforce is relevant and secure.
E) Quality Control:
It is imperative that the CRM must be thoroughly tested by the Salesforce development company before going into production.
It helps to find any problems that may disrupt the work processes and verify that all the criteria are completed before the end-user gets the final version.
F) Releasing to the Public:
DevOps and Sysadmins work with the developers to transfer Salesforce to production from the sandbox so that your staff members may begin using CRM access in their day-to-day tasks.
G) Team Training:
It is possible to employ Salesforce’s official free instructional program in order to make your employees more comfortable using the software.
Individual training sessions with a Salesforce expert are also an option if you want to ensure that everyone on your team is on the same page when it comes to basic functionality.
E) After-Deployment Support and Maintenance:
There are recurring activities, new interconnections, and queries regarding the functionality of custom dashboards, applications, etc, after Salesforce has been placed into production.
Help from Salesforce administrators and developers may be required. This may be done ahead of time to guarantee that your application is safe and secure after it has been installed and your employees can begin using it.
F) Time and Project Management
A full description of the project, including the time span, priorities, and important features, can be created if you have already decided on the implementation strategy and agreed on all the functional requirements for the project.
As part of the process of creating an MVP, you can outline which features are included in the initial release and which ones may be added later on.
If you choose the Waterfall approach, you’ll be able to get a basic sense of the project’s scope and understand how the various steps work together. If one of the stages is delayed, all of the other phases are affected as well.
If you’re ready to use Scrum, your project will be broken up into numerous iterations, with programming, design, and integrations all being worked on at the same time, with specific outcomes being delivered at the end of each iteration, referred to as a sprint.
It doesn’t matter which approach is used; the requirements and effort estimation must still be completed. For example, you need to know how long it will take to construct custom dashboards or integrate them with your third-party system. Using these estimates, you’ll be able to properly plan and estimate the full scope of the project.
Consider considerations such as vacations, sick leave, and the end of the financial year when determining the scope of your project, as well as the time needed to address major bugs.
People tend to overlook these factors as they are thrilled about new undertakings and focused on the objective. Incorporating them into your projections will allow you to be more confident in meeting deadlines since you will have extra time to do so.
Step 5: Handle Salesforce Customization and Integration
To begin customizing, think about the following elements first
As a first priority, make sure your apps are secure. While system administrators and network experts configure firewalls to protect the server from malicious assaults, it is also a good idea to make sure your internal environment is secure.
Assigning responsibilities based on the data needed for day-to-day work will be crucial to preventing any unintended leaks caused by human interference.
Restricting the ability to modify specific fields is also significant, as it helps prevent the accidental modification of crucial information.
Lastly, make certain that all users have the required privileges before going live so that private data is only accessible by people with the appropriate permissions.
If you want your staff to be successful in their work, you need to provide them with the tools they need. For example, you’ll need to alter some fields, add some items, and adjust the general layout to meet your company’s needs.
If you want to know how well your company is doing financially, you’ll likely need to look at sales and product performance measures that are specific to your company.
In order to view your customized reports with all the fields and figures after your Salesforce instance is up and running, be sure you include all the necessary metrics during the planning stage.
Step 6: Upload Your Data to Salesforce
After deciding on a plan for implementing Salesforce, it’s time to get started. The first step is to move all the records from an old system or a previous CRM to Salesforce.
Here are a few things to bear in mind before transmitting the data:
- The quality of the data should not be compromised in any way throughout the transmission.
- Accuracy of data must be guaranteed.
- It is necessary to create a data mapping for the new system.
- Implementing several clouds necessitates the use of redundant data rules.
- Data migration technologies that automate the process are quite useful.
Step 7: Evaluate the New Salesforce Product
Many consumers feel that the completion of the data transfer and application customization stages signifies the completion of the Salesforce implementation process. However, a successful implementation isn’t complete without a testing step.
All procedures may now be tested by QA engineers. Is there a problem with the solution? Is it in accordance with the needs? Is everything running as expected? If so, it’s time to move on to the next step.
Step 8: Launch
The product is not yet ready for implementation. First, it must be moved to the Staging environment so that your workforce may become familiar with it.
Employees may test new features without concern of losing data or having a worldwide impact owing to faults and blunders in Salesforce’s cloning process. The new system will be tested by the staff, who will learn how to use it and see if it works as planned.
Using Salesforce in a real company setting is achievable if everything goes according to plan.
Step 9: Organize Employee Training and Support After the Launch
Training is required to guarantee that the team is prepared to operate in the new environment. Salesforce will be able to handle the day-to-day operations of the company after the training.
The project will require continual monitoring and assistance for the first three to four months following deployment. That’s why it’s essential to have an expert on hand to execute quick fixes if necessary.
Prepare Salesforce Upgrades
Once the main Salesforce launch has gone live, it’s time to start thinking about the next phase. In order to ensure that all employees’ demands are met, it is simpler to perform operations when the functional system is progressively expanding.
Adoption will be easier when new features are released in iterations on a regular basis. Maintaining a well-structured workflow can also help you prevent unexpected downtimes and maintenance.
Even though Salesforce CRM is simple to integrate, careful planning and preparation are needed for a successful rollout. It is important to break down the process into smaller stages because of the continual nature of Salesforce integration into your daily company activities.
It’s best to implement Salesforce incrementally so that your staff has time to become acclimated to the system.
The implementation’s progress should be communicated to all participants periodically. Employees will feel more connected in the process if they are kept informed of progress, even if it is too early to include a large number of participants.
We hope this article expands your understanding of the Salesforce implementation process and assists you in accomplishing your objectives.
FAQs for Salesforce Implementation
- What does it mean to “implement” Salesforce?
A Salesforce partner will collaborate with you during the deployment process to examine your current sales operations. The more they get to know you and your company’s goals, the more precise recommendations they will provide to help you achieve them.
- What are the advantages of putting Salesforce into practice?
Using Salesforce’s Customer Relationship Management (CRM), businesses may get a holistic picture of their customers’ interactions with their brand by breaking down the technological barriers across different departments.
- Is Salesforce implementation simple?
You must invest in the training of your staff. Despite the fact that Salesforce is simple to use, your staff may encounter problems. Salesforce training is essential to preparing your staff for the steep learning curve that will emerge when you migrate from your old company procedures and platforms.
- Is now a good time to put money into Salesforce CRM?
We strongly feel that now is the best moment to make the switch to a CRM like Salesforce and shield your organization from the COVID-19’s negative effects on the global economy.
- How much does it cost to get Salesforce up and running?
Estimated Salesforce implementation costs range from $10,000 for the most basic version to more than $100,000 if you include complicated integration, intensive optimization, and continual customization in your multi-component business.
- How long does it take to deploy Salesforce?
Salesforce implementation time might vary depending on the needs of the firm. It can take anywhere from three to four weeks on average, but it may take even longer in exceptional cases.
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