Overcoming Coronavirus Business Challenges with Salesforce: Guide & Tips

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Businesses have been thrust into a new world, and for the Salesforce community, this means sudden changes to how you work on a day-to-day basis, as well as changes to how Salesforce customers are looking to harness the technology.

Remote working alone has introduced so many new challenges, particularly for businesses that are still in the infancy of their digital transformation. Staff need to have access to all the necessary systems and data to do their job, but concerns around security mean this isn’t as simple as enabling remote access permissions and giving employees a back door key. You need to know who’s accessing your systems, when, why, and what they’re doing.

Several months ago now, I was contacted by Mason Frank International, the Salesforce recruitment specialist, inviting me to contribute to their new ‘Overcoming unprecedented business challenges with Salesforce’ white paper.

Their aim was to produce a helpful guide for businesses in the Salesforce ecosystem struggling to adjust to the new climate, with advice on everything from the best products and add-ons, to seamless data integration, to the best games to play with your team on Zoom on a Friday afternoon! Mason Frank are in the people business after all, so they know how fundamental staff harmony and morale are to driving positive results across your organization.

The 35-page white paper is split up into three sections, based around the biggest challenges that both Salesforce employers and professionals have spoken to Mason Frank about over the past few months. Perhaps the most valuable element of this white paper however is that these insights are either driven or backed up by Salesforce MVPs and experts—sixteen of them in total! Let’s take a look at some of the highlights…

Data Security

The white paper opens with ten actionable tips to improve your data security in Salesforce. This is led with a quote from FairWarning’s Mike Mason, who explains that uncertain times provide opportunity for cybercriminals.

“Cybercriminals are taking advantage of the chaos to steal data and infiltrate networks, so to prevent critical data loss, now is the time to secure your cloud applications. Enacting the right precautions now can protect your Salesforce system during this crisis and take you from reactive to proactive when it comes to data security in the future.”

– Mike Mason, FairWarning

Their section on securing APIs, supported with in-depth insights from Salesforce MVP, Susannah Kate St-Germain, is particularly useful at a time that businesses will be rushing to integrate systems with Salesforce.

Data Access and Visualisation

It can be quite easy when based in a physical office to have visibility on business data and team performances. You can log in to disparate systems if you need to pull any data (with a password manager for your logins), and keeping track of staff progress can be as easy as looking up from your desk and peering in their direction. Times may have changed, but the need for total visibility has only increased.

Mason Frank has told me the Admins in their network are waking up in cold sweats, screaming the word ‘dashboard’ in their sleep, and it’s no wonder. Salesforce dashboards can make lives a lot easier by giving members of the team or project stakeholders visibility on everything they need to see, and only that. Dashboards are hugely popular right now.

While I’m sure Mason Frank would love to help you bring in a Salesforce Admin for this reason, they’ve actually included a pretty comprehensive guide to creating a custom Salesforce dashboard in their white paper, written by Salesforce veteran and marketing super user Michael Grant. There’s even a resource section full of pre-configured dashboards that you could start using today.

Optimizing Salesforce

The final section of the white paper focuses on optimizing Salesforce in light of recent changes. It covers everything from tips and best practices to get more out of the technology, ways to temporarily scale-down your operating costs, and third-party products and add-ons to push for more functionality without making wholesale changes to your instance.

It concludes with some tips on keeping your team engaged and in good spirits when working from home. I contributed to this section, where I shared some of the things we’ve been doing at EMPAUA to maintain our strong team spirit.

“We’ve set up a remote working taskforce, who have been working hard to keep us engaged with each other. They have arranged events such as after-work drinks, quizzes, exercise classes, meditation, and cooking classes! These are all being led by volunteers in the company and are a great way to stay connected with your colleagues. It’s funny how quickly you forget you are sitting in your living room when engaged in one of these activities.”

This section on remote working tips rounds off the white paper nicely, as it’s important to remember that no matter how powerful your technology, you can’t push forward without your workforce behind you.

You can download Mason Frank’s white paper ‘Overcoming unprecedented business challenges with Salesforce’ in full from their website.

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