As you likely know, Salesforce is a powerful cloud computing service specializing in customer relationship management (CRM).
Though it is user-friendly once it is up and running, Salesforce can be difficult for someone who is not an expert to implement. Yes, do-it-yourself implementation is possible, but doing so comes with the high risk that it will be done poorly, undercutting the multitude of advantages the software provides.
When properly set up, Salesforce’s services allow your businesses to use cloud technology to better connect with partners, customers, and potential customers. There is a reason that PC Magazine considers it one of the top three CRM services on the market for 2019.
In fact, there is a multitude of reasons why Salesforce is so highly regarded. One of the primary reasons is that it’s more than just a great CRM. Using Salesforce, you can transform numerous areas in your business, including ERP (enterprise resource planning), CPQ (configure price quote software), marketing, and community portals.
However, unless you have an experienced Salesforce Administrator as part of your team, you will want a Salesforce consulting expert to help you with implementation. Ultimately, using Salesforce is really about more than just a transition to new software. If you’re using it effectively, you’ll create a more solid foundation around how you interact with clients.
Ask Yourself These Questions Before Investing in Salesforce
For those who have yet to jump into the deep end of the pool, ask yourself these five questions before seriously considering Salesforce:
- Have you established a governance board? A governance board can help you set up the robust Salesforce software in such a way that it closely supports your business needs.
- Do you have an ongoing execution team? It is too easy for the complexities of implementing Salesforce to derail your attempts at using it successfully. Having an execution team dedicated to implementation will help you maximize your Salesforce return on investment (ROI).
- Have you established a method for managing Salesforce end-user requests and questions? Without a doubt, people will have questions. You’ll want to have a system in place ahead of time to ensure that these questions are answered.
- What’s your plan for dealing with new Salesforce features as they’re released?
- What’s your innovation strategy? Establishing such a strategy is a proactive way to stay ahead of your competition.
Of course, if you’ve already launched Salesforce and feel like you might only be treading water, those questions won’t do you much good other than to show you some of the areas where you might have made mistakes.
However, there are plenty of signs and symptoms that you need to reach out to a Salesforce consultant — the first being that fact that you haven’t launched and don’t have an experienced administrator on your team.
Beyond that, there are a number of other signs — from weak user adoption to not knowing your Salesforce ROI — that should point you in the direction of a Salesforce consultant.
You’re Suffering from Weak User Adoption
If people aren’t using Salesforce, the data it provides you and your executives will be weak or flawed. One of the primary reasons that you will get bad data when using Salesforce is because the system hasn’t been fully adopted and other data management methods continue to exist in your company. The use of Excel or even email communications outside of Salesforce can lead to the loss of vital data and inaccuracy in the data you do have.
Given the investment you’ve made in Salesforce, it’s essential to ensure that it is fully adopted by your team. If there are issues with weak user adoption, a Salesforce consultant will be able to quickly identify these issue and shore them up.
Failing to Fully Utilize the System
Salesforce is an extremely powerful system. Not taking full advantage of all its abilities is like buying the newest iPhone and only using it to send text messages. Sure, it will work for that but are you getting full ROI on this expensive software product? Certainly not.
Having a Salesforce consultant onboard will allow you to maximize functionality, especially with regards to dealing with system updates. They can also streamline your business by harnessing Salesforce’s power for marketing, customer service, and configuring price quotes.
Even if you have a solid handle on the core Salesforce products, knowing which of the thousands of apps in the AppExchange to use is going to bolster your original investment.
Not Getting a Full View of Customer Relationships
One of the many reasons Salesforce is so widely adopted is that it helps you get a 360-degree view of your customers and potential customers. Integrating a system that contains prospect and customer information can be challenging, but doing so is vital for adapting your business, sales, services, and marketing to meet their needs.
A Salesforce consultant will be able to make sure that you are not missing any angles when considering your customers and potential clients, from their first interaction on your website to well after they’ve paid their bill.
Not Getting The Right Reports
Sure, if you’re working in middle management, you might think your goal is to produce reports that seem to justify your existence in a company. But as anyone who’s a part of a lean startup knows, reports need to provide meaningful insights on what business decisions must be made.
Having an expert will show you how to run the right reports, narrowing in on the data that will allow you to make the right decisions for your business.
You Can’t Prove Your Salesforce ROI
You’ve made a serious investment in Salesforce; if you’re unable to provide hard data on how it’s improving your business, you’re doing something wrong. Even if you’re sure that it’s helpful, there’s always the possibility that it goes on the chopping block next to budget if you can’t prove that your ROI is high enough.
A Salesforce consultant will be able to help you understand and identify the data that proves whether or not Salesforce is working for your business.
Final Thoughts: Why You Need a Salesforce Consultant
Harnessing the incredible power of Salesforce is essential for getting the most bang for your buck and optimizing many facets of your business.
Given the sizeable investment you are making with implementing Salesforce, you do not want to be cutting corners and are likely wasting time and money with a poor setup. Bringing a consultant onboard when launching the system can help you with everything from adoption to proving the value of Salesforce.
Still not sure if you need a Salesforce consultant? Talk to the experts at Vantage Point to better understand how they can make Salesforce work harder, and better, for you.