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Salesforce implementation

Smooth Salesforce implementation

“The Always Underestimated Question of Change Management”

Salesforce implementation and change management

In our previous post we discussed a number of issues to consider for smooth Salesforce implementation. Now I want to emphasize and elaborate on one which I feel is often underestimated: Change management.

This task is generally client-led because it is the client who has insight and knowledge on their internal ‘customers’. We’ve had everything from clients who knew nothing in this regard to ones who had prepped a perfect communication and merchandising plan for the project. I don’t need to tell you which one adopted better and had a greater impact on the organization.

My goal is to provide any organization seeking to implement Salesforce (better with S4G, of course :P) with a list of actions and the effort involved to help them assess whether it makes sense for their organization and whether they want to put the work in.


Holding a meeting with the project sponsor, the head of internal communications or marketing and the stakeholders to determine the actions to perform, the parties responsible and the delivery dates is a good start.

Level of effort per person involved

Name It

It might seem silly but it’s not. If something is important you should put a name to it. Naming a project improves awareness of its importance and makes internal branding easier. You have to ensure it makes sense to everyone, give it a context and make it easy to remember and inspirational.

Close the change-management planning meeting with a brainstorming session.

Level of effort per person involved

Communication Plan – Sell It

Yes of course you have to draft a communication plan to convey the change to everyone in the company. Here are some ideas on content:

Communicate the project objectives to the whole of the company at the start to facilitate change management and Salesforce Implementation.

Task involving content generation, mock-up and sending:

As soon as you have defined it, tell everyone in the company who the people involved are and their roles. This will help empower the stakeholders and everyone on staff will think about who they can tell their ideas to so they can be managed within the project.

Task involving content generation, mock-up and sending:

Project phases: A monthly update about Salesforce Implementation with project milestones and its phases with their statuses will help keep the project fresh in people’s minds and remind stakeholders of the effort expected of them.

Task involving content generation, mock-up and sending: Level of effort per month of project.

Gestión del cambio, nivel de esfuerzo medio

Benefit for them. Yes, it’s important for users to see what they get out of it, not just the company. Detect quick wins and solve them, send them a video/demo/PoC as soon as the preliminary version is ready.

Task involving content detection, generation, mock-up and sending: Level of effort per quick-win communicated.

level of task salesforce implementation

Training sessions:

Include videos of the processes in their final phases in regular dispatches. This allows people to see how the work is done in order to bolster training. The videos can be employed to train new users who get involved in the future.

Task involving planning and prepping each email, mocking up the email and sending it: Level of effort per process.

Explanation about internal troubleshooting, bugs, etc.

Tasks involving making a decision regarding a tool to use, documenting it, mocking it up and emailing it.

This can all be used to manage expectations and keep the staff interested. Any extra measure we take could be relevant, e.g., on one of our latest projects. Project plan with its phases was set up in the middle of the busiest place in the office. This way, everyone could see how it was going at all times.

Salesforce Implementation & Gamification

Salesforce Chatter is an excellent place to share many gamification dynamics (ranking, recognitions, social feedback, etc.).

It can also be a good idea to run competitions based on adoption rankings and/or set operational KPIs.

This task involves different levels of effort depending on the number of established activities and their depth

.Gestión del cambio, nivel de esfuerzo alto

Champions and Internal Administrator

Having a departmental champion and/or UAT status localization and an internal Salesforce administrator who knows the departments across-the-board can help settle support issues quickly and drive the backlog of improvements.

Task: The champions and administrator will invest a support effort that will decrease over time. Level of weekly effort per person at the start 

Knowledge Base

If Service is contracted it could be a good idea to have one of the Knowledge Base sections. Dedicated not just to Salesforce processes but to complete procedures that help with troubleshooting and give users a crosscutting vision.

If it isn’t contracted, it’s still important to have all these issues documented so that users don’t get bottlenecks and don’t spend too much time solving problems.

Level of effort to create it (depending on depth and chosen tools).

Gestión del cambio, nivel de esfuerzo alto

Level of weekly effort to maintain it (will steadily decrease).

Public Improvements Backlog

It’s important to know the post go-live problems users have so that you know what they feel about what Salesforce brings them. Make sure there is a public backlog and a procedure to add functionalities to it.

This empowers user engagement and gives you insight into the problems that arise from the new procedure or process. 

Level of effort in weekly management plus analysis when applicable.

Gestión del cambio, nivel de esfuerzo alto

Prevent process workarounds

Don’t let users perform critical tasks outside of Salesforce or they won’t use it. This would make adoption tricky and harm change management.

Obviously everything will be much easier if the tool to implement is Salesforce configured by S4G, as endorsed by our 90%-plus success rate in over 350 projects.

Álvaro Peñalba. PMO Lead