Implementing Salesforce Successfully

Things to Think about before Implementing Salesforce

Effective Salesforce rollouts require a well-crafted plan and careful execution. Implementations are intricate and demand a thorough knowledge of how the system works. As with everything, experience is vital to a smooth integration. This post is not meant to scare you but to equip your team for the journey ahead. Read on to learn more about what you should consider before implementing Salesforce. 

Salesforce is a powerful system that provides users with unparalleled capability. The tool is a must-have for any company looking to grow and stay connected. It’s so much more than your parents’ CRM – it’s a customer service tool, a help center, a marketing platform, etc. But as the saying goes, “with great power comes a great implementation.”

What Does Integration Look Like?

Like the kid in school who is friends with everyone, Salesforce plays well with external applications. From Dialpad to Adobe, you can easily access hundreds of apps through the Salesforce system.

Before you start the implementation, we recommend mapping out a complete list of integration needs. Make sure you know what you want and how the systems will communicate with each other. 

Pro Tip: Actual integrations take time and require technical expertise. While the DIY spirit is admirable, it usually doesn’t end well here.

How To Train the Team

Salesforce is not an autonomous vehicle; it requires someone to drive it. The driver here is your team, and as it takes time to learn how to be a good driver, Salesforce also has a bit of a learning curve. Therefore, helping users with best practices and terminology is crucial. The two questions you want to answer are:

  1. How are we going to train everyone? 
  2. Where can users go if they have questions?

It’s just as important to have an internal team trained and motivated to use Salesforce as it is to have the tool. Depending on your capacity, training can consist of anything from a series of teamwide meetings focusing on how the platform works to mandatory completion of Trailhead units. This Trailhead curriculum is a free resource created by Salesforce to educate users. It’s a great tool to introduce newcomers to the Salesforce ecosystem. In addition, training allows your team to get up and running on the platform quickly.

Your team should create a working vocabulary and an outline of best practices. It doesn’t have to be pretty, but an internal resource will help answer questions and reinforce standard operating procedures. It may sound like tedious work, but you’ll thank us later.

professional businesspeople

Internal Salesforce Resource

Who is going to be your Salesforce “person?” Who will be responsible when questions, problems, or recommendations arise? While Salesforce is an independent and self-sufficient application, you still need someone internally to oversee the day-to-day operations.

There are a few determining factors when assigning this responsibility. For example, an admin may be a good idea if you’re looking at running a large-scale operation with 50+ users. Admins usually come with a series of certificates and a wealth of knowledge about how the system should run. At the bare minimum, though, you will need someone internally who is comfortable setting up new users, editing fields, and ideally working with Flows. In addition, you’ll find an internal resource who can quickly troubleshoot and answer questions to be very efficient and productive.  

Choosing the Best Salesforce Implementation Partner 

Similar to the dating landscape, there are many options for finding a consultant to lead your implementation. On Google alone, you’ll find the names of 100+ businesses that say they are the best. This process can be confusing and frustrating unless you know what to look for in a partner. Arguably, experience and communication are the top qualities of a capable partner.

Has the company implemented Salesforce before? This is probably a good question when evaluating any business but so crucial here. A lot goes into implementation, and you really need to trust that the company knows what they’re doing. Before making a decision: 

  • Reach out to their references
  • Check their Salesforce Certifications
  • Read their case studies, if available

Communication is often overlooked, but it’s the key to any healthy business relationship. Because of the technical requirements and the level of customization of each Salesforce system, you must be comfortable with how the consultants communicate with you. For example, making sure the system works the way you planned and getting all your questions answered promptly are communication considerations. 

The Salesforce platform can transform your organization. But, before that can happen, the tool must be implemented appropriately. Getting to that place can be an uphill battle if you’re unprepared. Therefore, a comprehensive plan that outlines what happens before, during, and after the implementation is critical. In addition, working with the right consultant will make the transition as smooth and easy as possible. 

Our Revenue Ops, LLC team is committed to providing the best experience possible. We have a tried and true system for Salesforce implementations that starts with a complimentary discovery meeting to discuss your needs. Then we map out a plan with specific tasks and timelines to strategically incorporate Salesforce into your operations and tech stack. We take the time to review project progress and address any questions throughout the process.

If you want to discuss how we can help you to implement Salesforce successfully, don’t hesitate to contact us!

Improve Revenue Operations by Consolidating Your Data

How Consolidating Data Can Improve Revenue Operations

Listen to Heather Davis Lam explain how consolidating data can improve revenue operations, also known as RevOps. Authentically Successful is a podcast hosted by Carol Shultz that features experiences from founders and executives. Heather is the founder and CEO of Revenue Ops LLC, a revenue consulting company. Before becoming a revenue operations expert, she was a professional musician. Eventually, she was introduced to Salesforce and never looked back.

Heather manages a lean but nimble staff who are just as passionate about data and efficiency as she is. Their natural ability to optimize workflows internally is the key to successfully helping other companies improve their operations. Heather promotes professional development and mentorship among her staff by pairing team members together so that they can learn and grow from one another. 

Revenue Operations At Work

RevOps is a strategic approach to managing business operations. Revenue Ops LLC works with companies to leverage their people, processes, technology, and data to scale their business.

According to Heather, small and medium-sized clients who want to improve revenue operations usually start with a core technology platform, namely a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, like Salesforce Sales Cloud. As a cloud-based program, access is easily managed for users according to individual needs. In addition, users don’t have to download or install the software. 

Once the core system is implemented, other tools are inevitably added to enhance the CRM. Clients get excited about marketing automation opportunities and sales enablement utilities. Programs like Pardot and Salesloft are native complements to Salesforce.

Revenue Ops LLC always offers a training component after an implementation. Training workshops are customizable according to the client’s goals and resources. Some clients want to be as independent as possible. While other clients don’t want to touch the system once it’s set up. There are managed services packages that provide a bank of hours each month for support. It’s a straightforward ticket system that gives users access to a professional team member/dedicated representative who will troubleshoot issues or guide them in expanding the system’s capabilities.

Heather lives and breathes the idea that you can do more with less.

“We’ve been able to create efficiencies within our own business and also help others create those same efficiencies within their business. So, that you can work with more of a lean team and be able to really maximize your ROI because you’re not having to spend all this extra money on either projects that could be automated or by having new people added to your headcount to do these projects that you were doing manually before. We’re here to help out.”

Listen to the entire interview now.


About Revenue Ops LLC

Revenue Ops LLC is an experienced team of sales, marketing, and customer success professionals committed to helping clients improve performance. The ultimate goal is to streamline workflows so that our clients can make data-driven decisions that maximize revenue. We apply our deep knowledge of CRM systems like Salesforce and sales enablement tools like Salesloft to optimize sales potential by stimulating and tracking customer interactions.

Learn how we can help you implement a strategy to improve revenue operations and maximize your growth.

How Talent Optimization Experts Implement a Revenue Operations Strategy

Watch episode 1 of the Rev Ops Roundtable. Our special guest is Michelle Joseph, Director of Client Acquisition & Success at Cedalion Talent and Co-founder of Thrive Collective. We discuss successes, challenges, and advice for those looking to implement a Revenue Operations strategy and Michelle’s experiences when setting this up for her own work.

Getting Started with Rev Ops

In this discussion, Michelle describes how she and her team overcame the challenges of starting a business. She says their main problem was organizing and managing prospects. They knew they wanted one centralized tool that would scale with them as the business grows.

Rather than storing customer data in a Google Sheet and relying on Slack to communicate with team members and then cobbling the tools together, they felt Salesforce would provide the functions that they wanted, and then some. But, the idea of implementing the software and trying to manage the backend, all while trying to develop the talent optimization business, was daunting. 

Like many startups, finances were limited, but Michelle recognized her limitations with technology. It’s not just a matter of installing the program; users have to be trained, the system has to be customized according to unique workflows, and the backend database must be maintained and secured properly. These tasks were beyond their skills and interests.

Revenue Operations Experts

After hearing horror stories about freelancers not setting up systems satisfactorily, Michelle was cautious about working with the right team of professionals. The opportunity costs of losing or disappointing customers were not something she was willing to pay. Nor did she have the desire to reverse engineer any problems that might crop up later on.

Working with Revenue Ops LLC was a no-brainer. The Salesforce implementation was fast and efficient. Now they’re looking ahead to segmenting their audiences and creating and automating custom flows to distribute personalized and consistent messaging to contacts regularly.

Michelle’s advice: Get it done right the first time.

Rev Ops Roundtable Episode 1
Play Video

About Revenue Ops LLC

Revenue Ops LLC is an experienced team of sales, marketing, and customer success professionals committed to helping our clients improve performance. We do this by focusing on three primary pillars:

  • People and processes
  • Technology
  • Data and analytics

Our ultimate goal is to streamline workflows so that our clients can make data-driven decisions that maximize revenue. We apply our deep knowledge of customer relationship management (CRM) systems like Salesforce and sales enablement tools like Salesloft to optimize sales potential by stimulating and tracking customer interactions.

Learn how we can help you implement a revenue operations strategy to maximize your revenue.

How Does Revenue Operations Drive Better Value?

How Does Revenue Operations Drive Better Value?

There has been considerable talk in the business and financial worlds about how revenue operations drives better value when companies use it to create a more streamlined approach to lead management and revenue enhancement. While the concept has been around for a while, its use has only recently come into full effect thanks to platforms like Salesforce and Salesloft that make it easier for companies to implement a revenue operations strategy.

The key is understanding what revenue operations is, how to use it to maximize your revenue streams, and what value it brings to organizations. We’ll examine each of these points and more, so you can understand why revenue operations is valuable to your company.

What Is Revenue Operations?

In a traditional business, the customer service, sales, and marketing teams do their own thing with minimal connectivity. If there’s connectivity among them, it’s cursory at best, and their efforts probably aren’t coordinated.

The marketing team generates leads and nurtures them until they’re ready to speak to sales. The sales team identifies customer needs and presents ways to solve those challenges. The customer service team helps with retention and keeps the customer happy and satisfied with the provided products or services.

The Revenue Operations team (aka RevOps) brings all of these groups together cross-functionally to form a cohesive unit that works together to drive conversions and provide an excellent customer experience. The Revenue Operations team primarily focuses on three key pillars – processes, technology, and data/analytics.

Bringing Teams Together

A Revenue Operations team’s strength lies in their ability to see the entire system and how each piece – Sales, Marketing, and Customer Success – fit within it. The head of the Revenue Operations team is responsible for creating the vision of a single business view with shared goals and revenue targets. They coordinate with the heads of each department to ensure that the strategy developed for revenue operations aligns with the goals for each team and the company.

 The head of Revenue Operations then shares these strategies with members of their team, who include liaisons that regularly interact with each functional group. These liaisons are responsible for keeping the lines of communication open between the functional groups and Revenue Operations. This arrangement allows for data and ideas to be shared easily.

Platforms such as Salesforce and Salesloft make data collection across teams easy and provide a high degree of visibility into prospect and client interactions with the entire company. Each functional group is responsible for key performance indicators (KPIs), including annual recurring revenue (ARR), the number of leads generated, customer turnover rate, and customer lifetime value.

Processes Designed to Bring Everything Together

Team connection and data collection can only go so far, but processes developed to bring these two aspects together create a successful revenue operations strategy.

The goal of revenue operations is to make sure all teams work together from the beginning, when a customer considers purchasing a product thanks to marketing, closing the deal with sales, and then customer service successfully renewing and upselling products or services.

The Revenue Operations team assists each functional group by mapping processes and documenting procedures that can be shared with other functional groups or used as training materials. These processes ensure that team members follow repeatable processes and achieve consistent results.

Processes help maintain cohesion from one team to the other and ensure that everyone understands what the other groups are doing. Processes create accountability across the teams and streamline revenue growth, so you see benefits like increased upsells, better customer retention, and shorter sales cycles.

All of these add value to your teams and your company. Don’t underestimate the importance of processes in revenue operations. Collaboration and data collection can only go so far unless there are processes in place to coordinate everything into a cohesive unit.

Difficulties Implementing Revenue Operations

Revenue Operations as a concept has been growing significantly within companies of all sizes, as stockholders start to appreciate the value and importance of developing a coordinated cross-functional strategy. However, since there isn’t much information readily available about revenue operations best practices, there have been some obstacles.

One of the biggest problems is companies treating revenue operations as an experiment. They want to try it out, but they don’t invest the time and money into the resources needed to make it successful.

They may create the team but not invest in the technology stacks necessary or develop the processes required to meet KPIs. If you treat revenue operations as an experiment or as a proof of concept, then you’re setting yourself up for failure.

You need to go all-in when it comes to revenue operations. There are services available to help you develop your revenue operations strategy, like Revenue Ops LLC.

Another barrier is centralizing and organizing clean data. As we mentioned before, data collection is one of the most important aspects of RevOps. With the ever-growing number of technology platforms utilized within companies, vast quantities of data are collected on prospects and clients who are interacting with your company. However, if you don’t properly analyze the data, you can’t use it to make the data-driven decisions that move the company forward.

Finally, some companies treat revenue operations as sales operations. Many companies believe that revenue operations and sales operations are the same, but they’re not. Revenue operations offers a holistic approach to business operations to fill in the gaps between sales, marketing, and customer service. In contrast, sales operations focus primarily on the processes, technology, and analytics most important to the sales team.

Value of Revenue Operations for Companies

The primary value of having a dedicated Revenue Operations team for your organization is efficiency. Since the RevOps team has visibility into processes, procedures, and technology utilized by all cross-functional groups, they can quickly identify redundancies and streamline operations.

Other benefits include increased ROI due to targeted prospect and customer interactions. Since connected systems like Pardot, Salesforce, and Salesloft all share data and reveal different insights, the company can provide personalized messaging at the right time to prospects and customers. This experience leads to increased conversion rates and improved customer retention.

The ability to analyze data and make timely, data-driven decisions is also a fantastic benefit realized by companies that implement a Revenue Operations team. Since RevOps has fully integrated its technology systems, established standardized processes and procedures, and built reports and dashboards to analyze the entire sales and marketing funnel, detailed reporting can be created. So various teams can be agile and responsive to quickly changing market conditions.

Value Goes Beyond Revenue

While the ultimate goal is to improve revenue, a revenue operations strategy does an amazing job of creating goodwill and building morale among the sales, marketing, and customer service teams.

Start Your Revenue Operations Journey Today
Revenue Operations is becoming the norm for business-to-business companies that want to create more revenue and build a trusting and cooperative core team. Your competitors are working hard to get their revenue operations up and running, so you should too.

There may be infighting and corporate animosity among the teams because they see themselves as internal competitors. It’s hard to create a team atmosphere when there’s little communication among the core teams.

Your revenue operations strategy instills a sense of unity and camaraderie. The success of one is the success of all. The organizational culture shifts from a “me vs. them” mentality to an altruistic mindset. The entire group shares in both the corporate successes and learning opportunities.

Revenue operations provides accountability. If one team underperforms, the others are there to offer support. There’s no relishing of defeat, but instead a desire to see everyone grow and succeed for the company.

Management can see how the team dynamic changes even after the first few weeks of adopting a revenue operations strategy. The teams generally become collaborative and comfortable with sharing constructive feedback. Productivity is positively impacted when there’s a mutual appreciation for different perspectives.

The Revenue Operations team is the impartial glue that holds the various groups together and helps them realize their true potential.

Revenue Ops LLC can help you develop your revenue operations strategy from start to finish. Our team of certified experts will work with you to solve your most pressing business challenges and help you develop everything you need to bring your business to the next level.

If you’re interested in learning more or would like to talk to one of our revenue operations specialists, please contact us today.