At the end of last year, IDC forecasted that the Salesforce economy would create 3.3. million jobs by 2022.
Whilst this predicted success is undoubtedly positive news for Salesforce professionals – who wouldn’t want to be part of an ecosystem that is powering innovation across the globe – it also gives rise to a new challenge: how do you compete with new talent and stand out from the crowd.
If you’re looking to excel in your career, and increase your salary whilst you’re at it, there are a few things you can do to help you on your way. Whether you’re just starting out, or you’re already a seasoned expert, there is always some way you can boost your professional standing.
Here are a few of our tips:
1. Carve out a niche
Making yourself an expert in a niche field will only increase your demand for work. And with increased demand comes the increased ability to charge more for your time. Whilst Salesforce itself is already a niche skill, having tailored experience in a specific industry or product will make you the go to guy – or girl – for businesses’ operating in that space. If you’ve already gained experience in the financial sector leading on cloud implementation, make that your thing – there’s going to be financial services businesses about to do the same thing who will pay top grade to get an expert on board. Or if going industry-specific isn’t your thing, there are more than enough ways for you to differentiate yourself in the Salesforce ecosystem; from Lightning Development and Lightning Rollout to Einstein or Analytics, there are a lot of different things that you can make your niche, and Salesforce is always growing and expanding. Take a look at Salesforce Trailhead platform as a great starting resource, but we’d also recommend going to MeetUps and engaging with fellow Salesforce professionals online in order to learn from their experiences.
2. Location, location, location
They say that location is key, and never has this been truer than in regard to increasing your earning potential. Indeed, the US city of San Francisco has been shown to boast the highest average Salesforce salary, with Salesforce Admins expecting to earn around 6% more there than Austin, Texas. Similarly, a study has found that a US-based Salesforce admin earns nearly twice that of a UK-based admin.
Whilst it isn’t practical for everyone to consider packing up and moving cities, if it’s something you’re open to, you’ll find that people are willing to pay more in certain areas.
Another thing to consider if your willing to travel, again, whilst it’s not for everyone, consultants do tend to make more money overall because they’re putting in extra time travelling to clients and are, literally, going the extra mile for their work. For some tips on how to get started as a freelance Salesforce consultant, read our blog.
3. Keeping up to date with technology
As mentioned above, carving out a niche for yourself in the Salesforce world is going to make you desirable – and increase how much you can get in return for your work. But, if you want to capitalise even more on the fact that Salesforce is a hot commodity, then you have to be on the cutting-edge of Salesforce technology. Having experience with a legacy system is all well and good, but what’s going to really make you stand out is having experience with the newer products that very few people have got to grips with yet. Almost every business wants to be the first to do something – whether it’s offering a new product or implementing a new technology – but in order to do that they need to hire people that have those skills. And, with the speed at which Salesforce is evolving and growing, businesses are going to be looking for those individuals who can implement and work with the most up-to-date features and technologies. So, it’s not just about picking a bit of Salesforce and being really good at it; it’s also about keeping up with the changing trends. If you have experience with Salesforce Wave Analytics, for example, you’re going to stand out from the crowd and be much more in demand.
4. Get certified
One sure fire way to stand out as an expert Salesforce professional is to, quite literally, get it in writing. Certifications prove to potential employers that you really do possess the skills that you’re claiming to have and show that you have invested time and effort in becoming the best in your field.
But with all the different Salesforce certifications out there, knowing which one to do can be half the battle. There are two approaches you can take. First, you can start by looking for gaps in your resume; if you don’t have experience in a particular product, take the initiative and make yourself a fully rounded threat by closing the gap and completing a course. Alternatively, pick an area of expertise and rack up as many certifications in that specific niche as possible; doing so will make you a highly in-demand talent for businesses looking to hire in that area.
It’s simple logic that being an expert, or all-rounder, in your area will enable you to raise your price tag. But for those dubious readers, the data actually shows that the average salary of a Salesforce expert with no certifications, and those with just one, differ by an average of $17,000.
5. Grow your personal brand
When it comes to making yourself a precious commodity in the world of Salesforce, personal branding is a must do. There’s a lot of ways you can do this; LinkedIn, Trailhead badges, training, your resume, and in interviews.
LinkedIn is the tool that every employer, in every company, will use to find you. Recruiters are constantly trying to find people like yourself, but if your LinkedIn isn’t a true representation of your skills and capabilities then there’s a strong chance you will be overlooked. Make sure to include all of your certifications and Trailhead badges, as well as what cloud you use, what technologies and applications you’ve integrated, or how big your user base is. These details will help you stand out and land the niche, high paying jobs that you’re looking for. For more tips on how to make your LinkedIn profile stand out, we’ve put together 7 steps on how to make your LinkedIn profile stand out – read it here.
Make sure you highlight all of these things on your resume as well and bring them up in interviews with potential employers. The more you can do to publicise your skill set and brand yourself as a world-class Salesforce professional, the better.
6. Keep moving forward
This stands true for almost all industries, but you should always be looking out for opportunities to evolve and grow. Showing professional development in your role indicates to employers that you are someone that is worth investing in and validates putting a higher price tag on your head. Progressing from Salesforce Admin to Developer and then Architect over a few years in one company paints a much better story for yourself than someone who was an Admin for years at various companies.
If you’re a Salesforce professional looking to land your dream job – with your dream salary – get in touch with one of our specialised Salesforce consultants.