Flexible Project Management Solution for Salesforce [In-Depth Review]

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The most flexible Project Management solution on the market, that can be leveraged by multiple departments in your organization, with each team having its own unique look, feel, and business process support.

Highlights:

  • Four choices of project methodology: Checklist, Agile Kanban Projects, Waterfall, or Water-Scrum-Fall.
  • Time-saving “Less Clicks” framework with repeatable project templates. 
  • Get started risk free with Cloud Coach “Starter” –  always free for the first 10 users.

To ensure successful project delivery, project managers (as well as other contributors) can spend entire days organizing. Rather than exchanging static files or spending time on endless calls, a straightforward and cohesive experience within a company’s CRM would certainly make everyone’s lives a lot easier. 

”Ownbackup”

Cloud Coach Starter is a single tool that does it all; it’s adaptable to all main project management methodologies out-of-the-box, and reports easily on important metrics. Better yet, all required components are available in the Salesforce instance that your users are already working on. This means that everyone will become accustomed to tracking their projects with Cloud Coach in no time. 

This in-depth review will dive into Cloud Coach Starter’s features, ideal use cases, and setup effort. It will also explore the ways this app will boost the user experience for both internal teams and external customers.

Features

While we will focus on the Cloud Coach Lightning App and its components, Cloud Coach also supports all the functionality we’ll show in Salesforce Classic. Let’s take a look. 

Projects Tab: Cross / Multi Project Overviews

When you select the “Projects” tab in Salesforce, you instantly launch into Cloud Coach’s “Projects Overview” UI, which shows the key information about your projects including name, type of project, completion %, and owner. 

The list of projects displayed by default is your “Recently Viewed” projects. From here you can select from several predefined views (such as “Projects you own”), or create your own list of projects by creating standard Salesforce list views.

Bonus: When you navigate away from and back to Projects in the same Salesforce session, Cloud Coach will remember which list view you were on and reload that one for you.

In addition to the above view, you can also visualize your Project’s list views in a Gantt View (for easy comparison of dates) or a Grid View format (where you can add custom columns).

Bonus: Cloud Coach displays a red alert next to the Project on the Gantt View when Tasks are overdue. Isn’t that cool?

Project Health

Conveniently located within the Projects tab, not only is this view easy to digest and customize, but also provides the perfect way to share project overview updates with any of your stakeholders. Indicators show the last change to your project health metrics.

Visualize Your Projects: Custom Views

Each of us has our own way of getting things done when working with Salesforce records, and this remains a possibility with Cloud Coach Starter.

Project List Views

If you’re accustomed to List View, you can create your own and make use of the filters and in-line editing functionality (providing this is enabled within your org).

Once created, your List View (and all those shared with you) will also be accessible in the Cloud Coach view.

Roadmap Sneak Peek – Sample Projects

To help you get started, from late December 2021 a number of best practice sample templates will automatically load when you install Cloud Coach into your Salesforce instance, so you can start seeing more value even faster!

Projects: Create Your Own

Now that you’ve had a taste of how granular Projects can be, it’s time to create your own! 

Each Project can be further used as a template to save time for your project managers (PMs) in the future.

Since this is our first Project, we’ll go through each step one by one. Choosing the methodology is a key step, as this will dictate the project view and “way of working” for the rest of the team.

Support for Multiple Project Management Methodologies

Cloud Coach Starter is unique among Salesforce PM & PSA apps in that it supports four different  project management methodologies:

  • Checklist
  • Agile Kanban
  • Waterfall
  • Water-Scrum-Fall

This ensures that PMs will find it easy to adapt when starting to plan end-to-end delivery.

Once you have selected your project methodology, then it’s just a case of entering a name for your project, along with any other information you want to capture – then you’re done. (Note that this input screen, like many in Cloud Coach, is driven by a fieldset, so you can control which fields are displayed to your users for population in the project creation process).

Checklist Project Type Overview

Checklist Projects are the simplest of the methodologies available in Cloud Coach, and are designed for the non-project managers among us who have to manage projects. 

Create a list of items that you need to complete, assign due dates, prioritize and assign them out to your team in one click. You can even group checklist items together and add custom tags for quick and easy filtering. All in all, it’s a great way to get started with project management on Salesforce. 

Popular use cases for Checklist projects include planning marketing events, onboarding customers, partners, or employees.

Agile Kanban Project Type Overview

Agile Kanban projects let you run multiple items (known as cards) through a series of repeatable process steps. You select which process for each project at the time of project creation. Cloud Coach comes with dozens of best practice Kanban processes already configured, and you can also add your own unique ones to the available list.

Cards can be added to any column or colour code, and assigned to users who can then drag and drop the cards as they move through your process. They can also prioritize cards by dragging them to the top of the column.

Popular use cases for Kanban projects include managing marketing content such as blog posts, managing your Salesforce configuration backlog for Salesforce admins, and IT issue resolution.

Waterfall Project Type Overview

Waterfall projects are the oldest and most traditional of all the project methodologies. Here, Cloud Coach supports you in splitting your projects down into multiple levels of phases and subphases, allowing you to order your projects how you please.

Tasks can be colour-coded according to your business process, such as one colour for tasks that require client input, and you can add any of the traditional four dependency types (including lead and lag time) between your tasks.

Popular use cases for Waterfall projects include IT projects, Construction projects, Installation and Equipment rollouts, along with many others.

Water-Scrum-Fall Project Type Overview

Combining the best of Waterfall and Agile together, Water-Scrum-Fall (also known as Wagile) allows you to add Kanban boards within your waterfall task schedule. This allows your teams to work in the manner that suits them. Your project managers and clients get visibility into delivery dates with the Gantt chart, while your build/development teams work in agile sprints contained within the overall project timeline. (Agile sprints are represented by the bullet-shaped turquoise bars in your Gantt chart).

All the information your agile teams capture (such as time and card completion), automatically rolls up in real-time to the waterfall tasks above, keeping everyone on the same page. This means no more lost time for your PMs searching for details from your build teams.

Popular use cases for Water-Scrum-Fall projects are Onboarding or Salesforce Implementation projects. Here you have a number of sprints occurring for the build-out capabilities but set against the fixed date activities such as workshops or production release dates.

Managing your Work Breakdown Structure – Tree View

Projects → Phases → Sub Phases → Tasks

Organize your waterfall and water-scrum-fall projects into a WBS tree to show milestones to the Project, represented as Project Phases and Sub Phases. If needed, all information can be edited at any point (as with other records in Salesforce).

Project Phases

Projects → Phases → Sub Phases → Tasks

Project Phases represent the high level breakdown of your project. Each Project can have as many Phases as you see fit, especially if the progression isn’t linear. Some Phases may happen simultaneously, and each Phase can have one or more Sub Phases.

You can display Phases and Sub Phases on your Gantt chart in whatever order you like, using the “Manage Tree” function on the Gantt chart.

Project Tasks

Projects → Phases → Sub Phases → Tasks

The next level is represented by Project Tasks – any Phase will have at least one of them. Due to the limitations of the standard Salesforce Task, this is a custom object that will offer as much flexibility as needed.

With the use of a WBS for your project, it is now starting to take shape, and is much closer to what you would expect to see in a Project Management tool. If a more granular breakdown of the Tasks is required, sub-tasks can be created on the fly from the Project view.

Resourcing

This is all about the users who will be working on the Projects being tracked within your Salesforce organization. The Resourcing tab allows you to create as many skills and locations as needed, depending on how your teams are structured, to best support Task assignment.

When zooming into a certain Project and each of its Phases, it will always be obvious when no Resource is assigned to handle a Task – this is thanks to a red person icon. Furthermore, you will know when sub-tasks exist as they will be marked by the checklist icon.

When at least one resource is assigned to the Task, the person icon colour will instantly change to green. This will become obvious when checking out the tasks on the Project view.

As you move up through the Cloud Coach tiers, additional resourcing functionality is enabled.

My Day

No matter what project methodology you are running, once a task is assigned out, it shows on the My Day tab for your users. Using this interface, people involved in multiple projects will know exactly what to prioritize, as well as how to organize tasks in advance, to ensure key elements are delivered on time. 

The My Day tab provides users with a schedule view, which can be extended to a 7-day view if needed. Not only does this view include the custom Project Task records, it also captures the Salesforce standard Task object records, which provides a complete overview.

Moreover, by clicking on a Task, the side panel on the right will allow you to easily edit data fields, collaborate on Chatter, and add further sub-tasks.

Time Tracking and Workload Transparency

Also included under the My Day tab, Cloud Coach Starter provides a way for “time spent” to be tracked. This not only ensures accountability on the resource’s side, but also helps users to organize and understand how their time is divided between their projects.

Bonus: You can track time on any Salesforce record, including time spent on cases with Cloud Coach Starter

Popular Use Cases

Cloud Coach Starter can bring value to your organization’s way of working, especially when it comes to ensuring success for both external and internal facing projects.

Customer Onboarding & Professional Services Automation

Keeping customers in the loop with a project’s progress might prove difficult at times – this is a key point that Cloud Coach Starter helps streamline for both parties.

Right from the start, expectations can be logged and success can be measured as the team works through their requirements – ensuring the customer is always up to speed with all the information they need has never been easier!

Installations

Streamlined hand-off between the Sales and the Delivery teams is crucial when a new implementation is started. Regardless of the nature of the project, having a way to make the information available instantly, as well as assigning resources based on either skill or location, can help achieve a successful outcome – Cloud Coach Starter can do this, and so much more.

IT Projects

One thing Cloud Coach Starter does really well is managing time tracking, as well as any change requests that arise along the way. This means that all team members know exactly what’s ahead, and will be able to adapt lightning-fast to any changes, while accurately logging and managing the time spent on different tasks. 

Setup

Setting up Cloud Coach Starter is as simple as it gets – after installing the AppExchange managed package, it’s all about deciding how you want things to be done. User Permissions can be easily enabled from the Cloud Coach Admin tab – the out-of-the-box permission sets are assigned by checking a box.

Of course, you can also take the old fashioned route and manually assign the basic permission sets, as well as the extras that Cloud Coach provides as part of their package.

User Interface Customization

We all know that different organizations have different needs and priorities. As a result, the capacity to adapt all components to these specific needs is highly important. 

For each of the key object views, all of the pieces can be customized through modifying field sets – you don’t have to visit the Object Manager multiple times! 

Once custom fields are created, if needed, the fieldsets can be edited directly from the User Interface tab within Cloud Coach Admin.

Next to the fieldsets, you will see colour tag sets, which can be created for both Project Tasks as well as (Kanban) Cards. This makes it easy to categorize by colour (however you see fit) the different items within both objects.

Support

As soon as the Cloud Coach Starter managed package is installed, documentation is emailed out to ensure immediate access to key information – everything you need to get started!

You can also check out one of the demos available online. Alternatively, you can opt to schedule a 1:1 demo tailored to your specific needs.

Furthermore, Cloud Coach Academy is definitely something you will enjoy exploring as you start to use the different functionalities. Information on courses and certifications can also be accessed right away from your Salesforce org – just go to the Cloud Coach Administration Tab.

Don’t forget to create a Cloud Coach Academy account to make sure all your progress is saved! 

Please note: Video resources can also be accessed via the? button within the Projects tab.

Pricing

User experience, for both prospects and customers, is a priority for the Cloud Coach team, and this is obvious from the start – the first 10 users are always free, with absolutely no time constraints! Once you need more than 10 users, you can simply purchase additional users from Cloud Coach.

Cloud Coach Starter is only the base plan in the company’s multi-tier pricing approach. Make sure you check out and compare the various price plans Cloud Coach offers to find out which works best for you.

Summary

With various projects happening within your organization at any given time, having a streamlined way to monitor and track progress is a must-have! 

Cloud Coach Starter will check all these boxes while ensuring that you, as an admin, can always customize the experience for your users. Take this managed package for a test drive and see for yourself how fast-tracking project progress will become!

”RevenueGrid”

One thought on “Flexible Project Management Solution for Salesforce [In-Depth Review]

  1. As a Salesforce implementation partner and a recent customer of Cloud Coach, this is a fantastic tool! It combines a great flow, data model and integration with Salesforce. Highly recommend it!

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