At 10K we consider ourselves to be the bridge between the Salesforce customers who need specialized (and often hard-to-find) Salesforce talent, and the people who provide those necessary skills. As that bridge, we believe it’s our job to measure the trends that deeply impact the Salesforce talent ecosystem and to understand how those trends impact the people who’ve bet their career on Salesforce.
Since 2018, we have published an annual Salesforce Talent Ecosystem Report that analyzes global Salesforce talent supply, customer demand, the ever-growing Salesforce partner ecosystem, and the steady redistribution of certified talent. Our research is a tremendous effort that we undertake with pride every year, especially as digital transformation continues to cement itself as the status quo for companies aiming to thrive in today’s economy.
Similar to the Salesforce ecosystem, the breadth of our research has grown year-over-year to keep up with the times. I’m confident our readers will find that this year’s fifth annual report is the most comprehensive and useful to date.
Read on for what we consider to be three of the most important findings from this year’s research – you can also download the full report here.
The Salesforce Admin Decreases?
This year saw a global decrease in Administrator supply, which declined by 20% in established markets and 16% in emerging markets.
The administrator supply numbers were, by and large, this year’s biggest surprise. We know many great programs are helping new admins get their start in the ecosystem. So how could there be fewer admins in the market than last year? Are admins actually disappearing?
After some thoughtful consideration and comprehensive analysis of supply and demand trends, we determined that:
1. The role of the Salesforce Admin is becoming more stratified
Salesforce recently launched its Admin Skills Kit, which lists 14 essential skills “required to be a successful Admin in today’s world.” Covering topics as diverse as user management and product management, it paints a broad picture of how important the administrator’s role is to building and maintaining a healthy Salesforce implementation.
It’s hard to argue that an accomplished admin wouldn’t have all or most of those specific skills in the toolkit, but there are a couple of emerging trends we believe are at odds with the traditional view of the Salesforce Admin.
2. Experienced admins are leveling up into new roles (Business Analyst, Consultant, etc.)
This year we saw significant growth in admin-adjacent roles such as business analyst, consultant, and solution architect. Salesforce’s focused programs for defining and enabling the business analyst and solution architect specifically have likely helped drive more talent in those directions.
All of the previously mentioned roles require skills found in the Admin Skills Kit, and with increased customer demand, experienced admins are finding their niche and moving into more focused roles. They’re also doing it faster than new talent can break into the ecosystem.
3. New admins are playing catchup to meet customer expectations
Those changing careers and hoping to blaze their trail in the Salesforce ecosystem are facing a multitude of challenges in landing their first administrator job. The previously mentioned boot camps and guided training programs are creating new crops of Salesforce talent and do a great job of helping people understand the core Salesforce technology. However, without prior experience, it’s difficult to fulfill the other demands that customers have for admins, specifically around business analysis, project management, and product management.
The Salesforce BA Increases
The Business Analyst role had by far the largest year-over-year change in global demand – a 55% jump from 2021.
Why is the Business Analyst becoming such a popular role?
Anyone that knows me is sick of hearing me say, “technology is the easy part,” but I’ve always been amazed at how often executives throw crazy amounts of money at software licensing and think the features will magically fix everything. The tides are turning on that way of thinking, and the growing demand for business analysts proves that.
People see incredible value in a team member that can lead a productive discovery and walk away with concrete business objectives and solution approaches to hand along to the technical delivery team. Business analysts are adept at acquiring sound business requirements. They help clients make the huge leap from “I don’t know what I need” to “I need to improve sales velocity by 50% to optimize deal close rates.”
Additionally, as software development lifecycles mature, the BA role adds much-needed focus to business requirements and solution documentation, areas often sacrificed by smaller organizations with a less formalized development process.
Smaller Partners Have a Hold on Talent
Despite the top five partners growing their total certified talent by a combined 31% YoY, their share of overall certified talent over the last five years has dropped 7%.
I expect this trend will continue, and we will see more experts specialize in specific clouds and verticals and migrate to smaller partners.
The top five partners losing their stronghold on certified talent also proves two things:
- Customers see the value in working with smaller, specialized partners.
- Experts desire to work with smaller teams where they can make an impact and build relationships.
Customers seem more comfortable now than ever relying on small businesses to support their important investment in Salesforce, because these small firms have attracted such incredible talent in today’s modern work environment. It really is a great time to have an entrepreneurial spirit in this ecosystem.
The global Salesforce ecosystem is constantly expanding, and so is the talent. This year, many trends have emerged from the data, but the most important (in my opinion) are those surrounding admins, BAs, and the talent at Partners.
Download the report and get a full overview of the ecosystem here.