In today’s competitive climate, if you’re not innovating, you’re falling behind. But it’s no easy feat to successfully leverage technology to grow your business.
Overcoming change is a barrier to your success with any new business technology investment. You can have the greatest technology in the world but if your people aren’t using the system or ready to continuously improve their processes, you’ll be met with challenge.
“Salesforce comes with a lot of ‘out-of-the-box’ functionality, but what it doesn’t come with is how to change your process and people,” said Mike Grandgenett, a Salesforce evangelist who has implemented multiple Salesforce products at large enterprise organizations. “But the great thing is, once you have the ability to change, it’s hard to stop it.”
Six Ways to Get Past Common Roadblocks
Overcoming change is hard work but ultimately unavoidable if you want to implement next-generation technologies such as Salesforce with a high ROI.
1. Establish core organizational tenets
Work with executive leaders to develop guiding principles for using Salesforce. Organizations reaching a high rate of success with Salesforce usually adopt a “cloud first” or all cloud methodology in which Salesforce is the central repository for information across all teams, not just Sales and Marketing.
The organization must work towards a “self service” approach in which they can find the information they need via Salesforce. Drive towards storing information within Salesforce and make Salesforce your primary ‘system of record’ for all departments and employees.
2. Make Salesforce your Google
Most people don’t think twice about where to go when they need an answer to a question – just Google it! You must think about how you can provide that same self service type of environment in Salesforce. If you can drive users to search using tags, content types, Libraries, Chatter groups and other tools, and they easily find what they’re looking for, you get substantially more buy in.
Through Salesforce search, you can greatly reduce emails, meetings and phone calls because the information is accessible. Chatter also helps group collaboration.
Moving to a self-service type of information system with Salesforce does require a change in your user’s behaviors. Make sure your executive team helps drive adoption through a top-down approach.
3. Involve all the right people
“The impact of involving all greatly outweighs the success of only involving a few,” Grandgenett said.
Often, during the Salesforce requirements building process, key people are left out, which creates problems down the line when a production-ready environment doesn’t satisfy all needs. Executive management often have a critical “vision” for the system or reports they need to manage the business. Make sure to involve them.
And, think beyond sales and marketing teams. Salesforce goes way beyond CRM. The more people in the system collaborating, the more value you’ll get with increased efficiency and revenue growth.
4. Use an agile approach to system, app or feature implementation
You don’t want to live in the sandbox. If you do, you’ll never get anything done.
“Don’t look too far ahead of the headlights,” Grandgenett said. “Small, tactile steps help you make progress.”
Starting small not only helps the team with quick wins but also system and data governancee.
5. Drive collaboration right from the start
Getting your company to collaborate could be a major hurdle depending on your culture. Salesforce has many tools you can use to spark collaboration. The sooner you use Salesforce for collaboration, the sooner you will see the ROI on your bottom line. Here are some ideas to spark buy in:
- Leverage non-business and business topics
- Look for high-volume topics (benefits, town hall, executive dashboards)
- Encourage and report on star users and participants
- Use a top-down approach
6. Focus on the fundamentals
Fundamentals win games. Period. Make sure you have the right number of Salesforce licenses and types of licenses. This will help ensure you meet the user needs.
Also, focus on great reports and dashboards. Look for ways your employees are still using Excel and how you can drive that data and process to Salesforce so you can collaborate and report real-time.
Finally, enlisting third-party experts through the Success Community and consulting partner program is essential. Salesforce has a giant community of people ready to help!