Salesforce standard objects come with a number of features that can be leveraged to build scalable processes in your Salesforce org. Among all the standard objects, Cases is probably the object that offers the biggest number of standard features that can be utilised.
In this article, we’ll explore the Case object, it’s features, and best practices to consider when setting them up.
1. Identify the most suitable Service Channels
The Case object is the main object of Salesforce Service Cloud and a Case typically represents a customer’s issue, question, or feedback and its resolution process. Therefore, its main purpose is to store information related to each issue, question or feedback from a customer: the time taken to solve it, the support agent who dealt with it on behalf of the company, the person representing the customer who has contacted you, and the different activities needed to solve the request.
When setting up Cases in your Salesforce org, one of the first things you need to do is decide which service channels you are going to offer to your customers, i.e. the origin of the support requests that will turn into Salesforce Cases.
Salesforce offers a number of features that allow you to connect different channels for customers to submit requests that will appear in your Salesforce org as Cases: web, email, messaging, phone, chat, and social media.
Customers expect you to be available on their preferred channel; however, deciding which service channels you are going to make available is not an easy decision, as there are a number of factors to be taken into account, such as company budget, sales volume, type of products/services sold, type of customers (existence of more than one segment), the most common reasons for customers to contact you and so on.
For example, setting up web-to-Case, i.e. connecting a webform with Salesforce so that customers can enter the details of their support request, is generally preferred over receiving an email. On a webform, you can ensure all the information required to solve the Case is provided by the customer. However, Email-to-Case is probably more suitable to capture Cases when you set up a new business, as you might not be so familiar with the type of issues that customers will contact you about.
2. Encourage Self-Service with Communities
By setting up a Community (Experience Cloud) you can give your customers restricted access to your Salesforce org, allowing them to take certain actions directly on the platform. For instance, you can allow them to create Cases, with the required fields and validation rules you want to enforce, and track their status along the support process. Letting your customers log and track support requests will help service agents get the data they need from the beginning, decreasing Case resolution time, and reducing the likelihood that customers contact you again inquiring about the status of their support request.
In addition, Communities can enable customers not only to create Cases directly in Salesforce but also to resolve them on their own by checking the content displayed in the Case Deflection component. This component searches text as it’s being entered into the Case fields and returns relevant articles and discussions. This feature encourages self-service and increases Case deflection (the rate that customers are able to find their own answers to issues that they would otherwise have contacted support for), because only if customers do not find an answer to their question, will they create a Case.
3. Put each Agent on the right Case
Imagine the following scenario: your incoming Cases come from email, web, chat and phone channels. Support agents and managers find prioritising and distributing work evenly harder and harder.
Or this scenario: your support agents have different skills, some are better suited to resolving particular issues than others. Cases are sometimes assigned to agents who do not have the right skills to solve them.
If you are planning on setting up several service channels in your Salesforce org, or if your support agents have different skills like in the above-mentioned scenarios, Omni-Channel is the best solution to ensure Cases are routed to the right agent. You can configure Omni-Channel to route Cases based on Queues or Skills, taking into account the number and type of Cases assigned to every agent and their availability.
In addition, Omni-Channel also offers a functionality for managers, the Omni-Channel Supervisor, which displays real-time operational metrics, such as waiting times and open Cases, that can be drilled down by agent, queue, and more.
Note: Omni-Channel can also be used with other objects, such as Leads, Orders and certain custom objects.
4. Enable team collaboration to solve support requests
In some situations, more than one Salesforce user might be required to solve a support request; for example, depending on the complexity of the issue you might need a support agent, a support manager, and a product manager. If that is the case at your company, Case Teams are a useful feature for your org.
Case Teams enable team collaboration by allowing several users to be granted access, such as read-only or read and write, to a specific Case record. You can also give customers access to a given Case by adding their Contact to the Case Team if they are enabled as customer portal users.
5. Guide your Agents through the Service Process
There are a number of productivity tools that you can set up for your support agents to be as efficient as possible such as:
- Email templates
- Mass quick actions
- Quick text
One of the most interesting productivity features is Screen Flows for Customer Service. Screen Flows allow you to collect information from Salesforce users through a set of screens; for instance, you can create a set of guided steps for your service agents to follow when solving a certain type of support issue that has a specific resolution procedure.
Even if your company does not need to follow specific safety, regulatory, or compliance steps during the Case resolution process, screen flows can be useful to simply ensure agents do not skip any steps. As a result, you will reduce costs, delays and your service quality will be significantly improved.
Standard functionalities are the foundations to build scalable Salesforce processes. In general, you should always use them before resorting to custom functionalities; however, there will be many times in which standard features will not be enough to build a process you need for your business and, in those cases, you should, of course, resort to custom solutions.