(Updated in March 2020)
Back in May 2019, Salesforce Admins received an email from Salesforce noting the imminent switch from Classic to Lightning. Among the Salesforce community, this raised a number of pressing questions – many of which are still relevant today:
- How has this affected me? (which edition am I using anyway!)
- What are the benefits of Lightning Experience anyway?
- Is now the time to be moving to Salesforce Lightning?
- Can I still stay on Salesforce Classic?
- Ok, so what do I need to do? I want to keep ahead of the competition. How do I prepare for the change?
In the wake of October 2019, when Salesforce “turned on” Lightning for all orgs – we’ll examine what the switch meant for Salesforce users and what its impact has been so far.
This article is part of our Salesforce Lightning Experience Series, designed to give Salesforce Admins all the information they need about migrating from classic and getting the most out of Lightning. Check out the other handy guides in the series here:
- 6 Tips To Migrate To Salesforce Lightning Safely & Swiftly
- 5 Tips for Salesforce Lightning User Adoption
- 7 Salesforce Features #BetterInLightning to Share with Stakeholders
- The Results: Transitioning to Salesforce Lightning – a Smooth Move?
- 4 Amazing Lightning Experience Features to Implement
Does this affect me? Am I already using Salesforce Lightning?
Salesforce are very Lightning-happy. Starting back in 2015, they branded many things “Lightning”, so we have Lightning Experience, Lightning Flow and Field Service Lightning amongst many other things.
In this particular article, we are only talking about “Lightning Experience”, the screen that you may see and use when you log into Salesforce. The alternative is “Classic”, which now looks rather dated. You can see screenshots of both below, to help you identify which one you are using.
The bonus with Lightning Experience is that it enables you to use various features that the Salesforce Classic screen layout cannot support. We’ll go into more details shortly….
What is Salesforce Lightning Experience anyway?
Salesforce Lightning Experience is the modern, improved user interface. It offers a more agile way of working. Focusing on end-user benefits (although there are many for admins), they will have easier to use screens, dynamic sections which will only appear as and when required, visual prompts such as Path and Kanban, and – of course – it is mobile and tablet friendly. With every 4-monthly automatic release there are additional benefits, so with Summer ’19 you got improved control over how related records are displayed.
The benefit for Salesforce (rather than us) is that it is easier for them to develop as it’s completely different under the hood. They are focusing on bringing new functionality to Lightning Experience, which will never come to Salesforce Classic. This is why they are focusing on getting us to move over.
Is now the time to be moving to Salesforce Lightning?
For most organisations, the answer is “Yes”. Initially Lightning Experience was a bit slow, but this was many years ago. It is now much faster. Similarly, when Lightning first launched, some core features were missing, but these are now relatively few are far between. Speaking to new users and administrators, they can’t understand why people would prefer Salesforce Classic.
Salesforce has provided some tools to help you to move. See “What actions needed to switch to Lightning?” for more details, as well as some tips.
Can I stay on Salesforce Classic?
Salesforce Classic still remains, although no promises can be made about whether this will always be the case. Salesforce have given no indication that it is going away. However, they have confirmed that no new features will be released on Classic – meaning that users that remain will lose out on all the valuable new developments.
What is going to happen is that everyone using a “Standard User Profile” will be moved over. Typically those on Standard User Profile have the least customized Salesforce and will have little impact, but if you’re not quite ready to change this is what you need to do:
PART A: Check which Profiles are affected
- You need to go into your Setup menu, and then go to Manage Users > Users
- Click on the “Profiles” column and then you can easily see which profiles are in use.
- Then go to Manage Users > Profiles
- You will notice a list of existing profiles in your org; you can easily distinguish between Standard and Custom profile by viewing the ‘Custom’ column (see screenshot below). If the profiles you use are unticked it means they are Standard profiles and will be affected by Salesforce’s enforced move to Lightning Experience.
…if none of the profiles that you actually use are Standard (i.e. they’re all ticked/custom) then you don’t need to take any action. Bear in mind that at least one account must be “System Administrator”, and that will be moved to Lightning Experience regardless of any actions you take.
PART B: Creating the workaround
- Clone the Standard profiles which you are using; just click on the “Clone” link to the left of the profile name, and give the profile a new name.
- Go into the profile and then into System Permission. Make sure that “Lightning Experience User” permission is unchecked and save the record.
- Go back to Users and assign your users to the new profile(s) you just created.
Ok, so what do I need to do? I want to keep ahead of the competition. How do I prepare for the change?
So you’ve decided to switch to Lightning Experience. Great stuff, but some planning is in order. The good news is that Salesforce have invested significantly in tools that will help you, without impacting on day to day usability..
If you go to Setup, you’ll see in the top left hand corner the “Lightning Experience Transition Assistant” (see screenshot, below).
Click “Get Started” and follow the prompts. You’ll particularly want to run “Check your Lightning Experience readiness” which can be found within Discover Phase: Evaluate Lightning Experience Benefits and Readiness. Click “Check Readiness” and you’ll then be emailed an impact analysis to let you know what considerations you should have for full deployment.
There are two likely outcomes: you’ll be sent a list of items that you have to double check or prepare to ensure that everything is Lightning compliant, or maybe there will be no issues. Either way you then have to create a transition timetable for Salesforce Lightning, including testing (in a sandbox at first!) and end-user training.
Mainly, we don’t recommend waiting for Salesforce to move you over, do it at a time, place and pace of your own choosing. Follow the Get Started guide, as Salesforce has put considerable efforts into this, based on best practice and feedback from other organizations that have made the move.
If this all seems too much, I’ll put on my Consultant hat and suggest that you consider leveraging a Consulting Partner, who will be able to help you through this entire process and use their experience to unlock further benefits. They’re skilled in these one-off projects that may fall outside of the day-to-day remit of most Salesforce Admins.