Salesforce is an investment and it can be tempting to encourage all of your departments who use it to share the responsibility of communicating with your consultant. After all, when each team has some ownership of the system, buy-in is baked into the process of optimizing it because there’s that sense of ownership.
In our experience though, the best results come when an organization avoids this temptation and identifies one person to act as their Salesforce champion. With one point of contact to prioritize projects and shoulder the responsibility of working with the Salesforce expert, this champion can advocate for all your organizational needs while engaging the appropriate stakeholders as needed.
This Salesforce best practice draws from our Keep It Simple and The Right Solution Core Values. After all, what’s more simple than one unified organizational voice communicating with your consultant? With one champion managing the communication of business needs, your company can be certain that nothing is getting lost in the ether. Projects will receive appropriate prioritization and together you’ll methodically work through them.
Consider this example: The Sales team needs to automate the sales process. Marketing just switched to a new marketing automation system. Finance wants the Support team to start calling past-due clients using data pushed to Salesforce from the accounting system.
Who gets priority?
Marketing might argue that without leads, nothing gets sold. Thus they should take priority.
Sales may counter that they close the opportunities and bring in the money. New sales should always get priority.
Finance may respond that if Support helps them collect 10% more on past due accounts this quarter, that pays for the engagement with the consultant in its entirety. They truly bring in the money and should naturally get priority.
As you identify your organization’s champion, they’ll need to have enough authority in the company to direct the work, make tough decisions, and track progress to ensure those goals are reached. Ideally, they’ll have the ability to gracefully navigate differences of opinion, bringing stakeholders into agreement (or at least a shared understanding) of what work will benefit the company the most given its current challenges and budgetary needs.
With more than one point of contact communicating with your consultant, priorities and goals can get a little murky. Not only this, but you may end up using valuable hours navigating internal issues alongside your Salesforce expert when that could be done internally off the consultant’s clock. With only so much of their time allotted to building solutions, it makes sense to only draw them in when needed.
While some Salesforce best practices are more technical in nature — like the ones that relate to org management, data hygiene, and overall system health — other Salesforce best practices like this one described here promote long-term success with Salesforce as an organization’s one source of truth.
By identifying one individual at your organization who can champion the system, coordinate priorities, and work with your Salesforce consultant, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier CRM system. And your team will appreciate that there’s a centralized approach.
Interested in other Salesforce best practices? This blog post on system documentation is a great primer to get you up and running with a shared Salesforce knowledge base your company can refer back to again and again.