The Most Common Salesforce Problems & How to Solve Them

Salesforce: The Best New Features of Summer 2020 Release
July 1, 2020
CRMNinjas and HelloSign Sign Partnership
August 11, 2020

(or how to screw up your CRM implementation)

Salesforce deployment and integration can make or break the platform’s success for your organization. More often than not, these problems are less about Salesforce itself and more about a culmination of cultural, technological, and operational hurdles many businesses face.

Teams turn to Salesforce as a cornerstone for digital transformation, investing heavily to revolutionize their customer relationship management. Yet, CRMNinjas has seen numerous clients approach us as a last resort, on the verge of abandoning the platform after investing thousands of dollars and countless hours. 

The journey to implementing Salesforce is fraught with pitfalls, not just technological but deeply rooted in organizational culture and human behavior. Salesforce integration challenges are one reason we recommend partnering with a Salesforce administrator or consultant.

In this article, you will learn:

  • The critical barriers businesses encounter with Salesforce deployment.
  • Strategies to navigate the complex landscape of digital transformation.
  • How to align organizational culture with technological advancements for CRM success.

Embark on a journey with us to unlock the full potential of Salesforce for your business, making your investment not just a leap of faith but a step towards comprehensive digital empowerment.

Common Salesforce Problems & Solutions

Organizational Resistance

Organization resistance is a common Salesforce integration challenge. The resistance can take multiple forms, but these can be summarized into failed efforts to embrace change and blaming routine growing pains and friction on the new platform. Both can be detrimental to the long-term success of Salesforce.

Failure to Embrace Change

Everyone loves the idea of new software that promises to improve their lives, but everyone hates change. It’s easy to sell the former and very hard to overcome the latter.

The shift to Salesforce demands significant updates to digital sales and service processes. In environments with well-established routines, securing staff buy-in can be challenging. Essential to this effort is leadership’s active support and clear communication from mid-level management about the platform’s benefits and the strategic goals it serves.

Leadership Buy-in: The success of Salesforce implementation starts at the top. Leadership’s commitment to change, demonstrated through clear communication and active involvement, sets a precedent for the organization.

Cultivating Personal Investment: Engaging staff by highlighting the direct benefits Salesforce offers them can foster a sense of ownership and commitment to the transition

The Blame Game

Resistance from a segment of the staff, characterized by reluctance or even sabotage, can cause salesforce integration challenges and undermine the process. Such behavior not only hampers productivity but can also escalate to significant losses.

These voices then loudly blame the “system” for failing to achieve the company’s objectives. In reality, it’s often the human contingent that is either unable or unwilling to do what’s necessary to create success. Be aware when you start hearing the blame game. It’s a sign of impending doom!

It is crucial to predict, recognize, and address these challenges early on to prevent them from derailing the project. This scenario emphasizes the importance of fostering a supportive culture that encourages positive engagement and minimizes blame.

Constructive Involvement: Encouraging positive participation from all team members in the transition process can mitigate resistance and avoid the pitfalls of blame culture.

Accountability and Support: Recognizing and addressing the fears and frustrations that may lead to blame-shifting is essential. Providing adequate support and resources for staff during this time can turn potential detractors into advocates for change.

Salesforce Integration Challenges: Navigating Technological Hurdles

Effective Salesforce integration requires overcoming technical challenges that, if not appropriately addressed, can significantly impede the platform’s utility and adoption. This includes overly sloppy configurations, poor data discipline, and app overload.

Sloppy Implementations

The “garbage in, garbage out” principle is particularly relevant to Salesforce implementations. A successful deployment demands strict data discipline and a setup that aligns with your organization’s unique culture and workflows. Too many clicks, interweaved tools, confusing page layouts, data overload, and convoluted processes will surely sour your staff on your Salesforce implementation.

Data Discipline: A successful Salesforce implementation is grounded in data quality, leveraging Salesforce’s tools to ensure security, efficiency, and a comprehensive customer view.

Streamlined Processes: Avoiding an overload of clicks, interwoven tools, and convoluted processes is vital. Simplifying user interfaces and workflows enhances staff acceptance and productivity.

Apps Overload

Another factor that can doom your Salesforce implementation is using apps meant to enhance or add missing features. The extensive range of apps available on the AppExchange can enhance Salesforce functionality but poses a risk of overwhelming users.

Strategic App Integration: While Salesforce’s AppExchange offers a plethora of apps to extend functionality, it’s crucial to introduce them judiciously. Starting with a minimal viable product allows users to acclimate without feeling overwhelmed, gradually incorporating additional apps to enhance the system.

Versioning Approach: Implementing a “version 1.0” that serves as an MVP can familiarize staff with the core functionalities before slowly adding more complex features.

Salesforce Deployment Challenges: Ensuring Team Adoption & Engagement

Ensuring team adoption and engagement is pivotal in the successful deployment of Salesforce. This phase moves beyond the technical setup to focus on the people using the system daily. It involves creating a supportive environment that encourages users to fully embrace the platform, leveraging training tailored to their needs, and fostering a continuous improvement and feedback culture.

Lack of Training

Your teams require property training to master Salesforce’s tools and capabilities. Finding ways to accommodate each employee’s unique learning style will speed up the training process and help drive buy-in and commitment.

Tailored Training Programs: Design training sessions that cater to various learning styles, ensuring all team members can effectively use Salesforce. Consider engaging methods, such as gamification and incentive programs, to make learning Salesforce effective and enjoyable. 

Engagement Through Education: Foster a culture where continuous learning is valued. Offering re-training intervals is also very helpful to support the change process. As with everything else in life, comfort and familiarity come with repetition.

Work Outside or Around Salesforce’s Platform

Nothing will doom your Salesforce deployment faster than allowing teams to continue to use old processes and tools. Given the choice, many will opt for the “old way,” no matter how annoying or slow it is. It’s the devil they know, and they prefer that to the devil you bring with you.

Enforcing Platform Use: Leaders must mandate the use of Salesforce for all relevant activities, reinforcing its position as the central tool for business operations.

Modeling and Reinforcement: Management should lead by example, using Salesforce exclusively for tracking and managing business activities to encourage team compliance.

Complex Processes

There’s so much possible with Salesforce — automation, approvals, and business processes —  it’s tempting for decision-makers to want to go wild with implementation. However, processes for the sake of processes bog down, complicate and diminish usability. Each process should be strategically aimed to solve or ease a workflow challenge. If it’s not doing that, axe it immediately.

Simplification Strategy: Remember to KISS — Keep It Simple, Silly. Review and streamline Salesforce processes to eliminate unnecessary steps and ensure the platform remains user-friendly and efficient.

Don’t automate for the sake of automation. Don’t create 10 layers of approvals when two can do. Don’t enforce stringent rules if they bring your processes to a grinding halt. Don’t fill your pages with 55 fields that no one will ever look at when 15 will provide the information they need to take action.

Feedback Loops: Establish channels for teams to provide feedback on system complexity and suggestions for simplification, promoting continuous improvement. Consider setting up live user experience testing to review how teams interact with your set-up and features and if there are lengthy steps that can be consolidated.

Failure to Create One Source of Information

The greatest strength of Salesforce is its ability to provide your company with a “single source of truth” for all your current and prospective customers. By failing to prioritize a one-source data policy for your company, you are missing out on one of the primary benefits of Salesforce.

Unified Data Policy: Emphasize the importance of Salesforce as the single source of truth for all customer information to prevent data silos and ensure consistency. Allowing teams to silo critical sales and service information on their laptops and spreadsheets that have to be emailed around and endlessly edited will eventually lead to the death of Salesforce.

Integration & Accessibility: Ensure Salesforce integrates seamlessly with other tools and that data is easily accessible to all relevant team members, reinforcing its role as the central repository of information.

Overcome Salesforce Deployment Challenges: Implement Salesforce Better Than Your Competition

The path to leveraging Salesforce to its full potential is complex. CRMNinjas specializes in simplifying this journey as an Admin-as-a-Service (AaaS), offering expert consulting and implementation support to transform Salesforce into a powerful asset for your business.

Find a complete list of our services here.

With CRMNinjas, you can access a team of Salesforce-certified partners dedicated to implementing and fixing sales processes and driving ROI through process automation. We focus on becoming a close part of your team, where we help you improve data quality, customer relationships, and ensure Salesforce serves your specific needs.

For businesses ready to elevate their Salesforce experience without the burden of day-to-day management, CRMNinjas offers a partnership that balances business needs with software requirements, providing on-demand help and customized solutions.

Discover how CRMNinjas can empower your Salesforce deployment not to survive, but thrive.

[thrive_leads id=’591′]