We discuss how doing a Salesforce assessment before updating the tool can help improve your business processes and the ROI of your Salesforce system.
As technology continues to advance rapidly, so do the tools businesses leverage for customer relationship management (CRM). Salesforce is one of the most popular platforms on the market, and its capabilities are immense.
Before enhancing your current Salesforce system, it’s important to understand the benefits of conducting a comprehensive assessment of your business processes and customer data. We will not explain how to conduct this assessment in this blog. Instead, we will explore why a Salesforce assessment critically benefits your organization.
What is a Salesforce Assessment?
As mentioned above, a Salesforce assessment is an in-depth analysis of your business processes, customer data, and the current state of your Salesforce processes pulled together to define enhancement or improvements for your system. It examines how efficiently your organization uses its existing technology and how it can improve by implementing new technologies in tandem with Salesforce.
This assessment aims to identify areas where you can streamline, improve or replace processes with more effective solutions, and it’s not something you should tackle on your own. Whether a trusted partner, a consultant or a freelance Advanced Salesforce Administrator conducts this assessment, the assessor should be an external resource with a limited understanding of current state business processes to eliminate any bias. Salesforce partners also have knowledge of best practices, the Salesforce product roadmap, and relationships with Salesforce Account Executives to support your company in making and implementing enhancements to your Salesforce CRM.
When Should You Conduct a Salesforce Assessment?
As your company scales and transitions, so should your Salesforce CRM system. The life cycle of an organization’s Salesforce platform moves through five phases of maturity: initiate, repeatable, established, mastery and optimized. It is important to consider conducting an assessment throughout the life cycle to map the current state.
Like surveying land before constructing new buildings or adding additions, these invaluable exercises can help identify challenges or areas for improvement in the initial stages of new application integrations or cloud acquisitions. Additionally, they are key steps along each stage of development toward a well-rounded process optimization outcome.
Benefits of Conducting a Salesforce Assessment
There are numerous advantages to performing a thorough assessment before updating your Salesforce CRM system. A few of these include:
- Identifying areas where you can improve processes: A Salesforce assessment will help you identify areas where you can improve or streamline processes, allowing you to make necessary changes before upgrading your system. This step helps ensure your team uses an efficient workflow from day one, allowing them to move forward without any unnecessary delays or disruptions in productivity.
- Reducing risk: A well-executed assessment can reduce the risk associated with implementing new technology or replacing existing systems with newer versions by identifying potential issues and providing insight into potential solutions. Most assessments will also uncover data enrichment efforts your company needs to conduct before or during an implementation, which can be timely and expensive. This allows you to take proactive steps toward eliminating potential problems before they arise instead of having to reactively respond after something has gone wrong.
- Improving customer experience: An accurate and up-to-date view of customer data is essential for any successful business endeavor. By conducting an in-depth assessment prior to upgrading your Salesforce CRM, you can gain valuable insight into how customers interact with your business and how best to optimize their experience to increase satisfaction levels and loyalty over time.
What to Expect from a Salesforce Assessment
A complete Salesforce assessment will evaluate critical areas of the business process and current system customizations to define opportunities congruent with the company’s needs and desires. The two key categories of the assessment are:
1. Current State Usage
Assessing the current state of the Salesforce architecture will define critical opportunities to improve the health of the system, enhance the user experience, and analyze ROI.
- Salesforce Instance Health: While measuring the health of the Salesforce CRM system, the assessor will evaluate current object and field-usage percentages, custom automation, storage limits, security and data sharing models.
- User Experience: The ease of navigation (number of clicks), accessibility to key data points, and process flow efficiencies define the user experiences evaluation.
- ROI Analysis: Salesforce can be a costly investment for a company. It is important to take inventory of current licenses and third-party applications and evaluate their usage occasionally to ensure your company is taking advantage of the technology.
2. Future State Roadmap
A quality Salesforce assessment should consider the future roadmap of the business and offer recommendations to support those plans. The goal of including a forward-looking analysis is to limit the amount of rework needed as your business begins to implement new processes.
The way we do business is ever evolving. The way companies manage business should also evolve. Salesforce offers innovative solutions designed to support scalability. Companies can also take advantage of third-party applications, some of which are free to use, to increase functionality within their Salesforce organization.
How to Turn Recommendations Into Action
After you complete and review a Salesforce assessment, what is the next step? It is often easy for the assessor to define all the opportunities they uncovered during the assessment but defining the “best next step” is also as important for a company to realize the worth of the assessment.
- Identifying Quick Wins: Identify and prioritize actionable items that require the least effort and offer the greatest value add. These might include Salesforce page updates, homepage enhancements, and automation to reduce duplication of data or manual work. These steps will offer immediate gratification and excitement for future enhancements, such as new clouds, new automations, new custom configurations of processes, and so on.
- Prioritize Common Pain Points: Speak to the masses by focusing on improving or enhancing business processes that impact more than a few user groups (employees or departments). In our experience, multiple user groups will share a common pain point. The resolution of that issue will positively impact multiple workstreams will the least amount of time and effort.
- Long-Term Plan Engagement: Share your assessment results with user groups and encourage engagement in long-term projects. Groups engaged in projects from the beginning are likely to champion process changes and system enhancements.
Conducting an extensive Salesforce assessment provides organizations with many benefits, like reducing risk, you shouldn’t overlook when considering upgrading your current Salesforce system. With an accurate understanding of customer data and insights into ways you can improve your business processes, you will be better equipped for overall success in business process execution, flow and future state implementation from the start. This process can reduce the risks associated with taking on such projects by addressing issues before they become problematic down the line.