Tutorials / Admins

How to Teach a New Employee Salesforce in One Day

By Joshua Loomis

Not everyone in the world knows what Salesforce is and how to use it. Crazy, I know. As an admin, you’re familiar with everything there is to know about the system. But how do you properly convey all of that to a new hire? And how do you do it in a way that’s easy and understandable?

We’ve all seen the dreaded corporate workshop where a speaker spends a whole day, maybe even a week, talking at you in a slow drone. All in one ear and out the other. How do you make sure you’re not wasting time?

I’m biased, but my first tip would be to have your employees learn Salesforce along with Cirrus Insight. Cirrus simplifies the Salesforce interface and focuses employees on exactly what they need to do. People will feel less overwhelmed and have an easier time getting started before moving onto mastering the full system.

Each org and position is different, so I can’t write out a whole script for you. But let’s go over the approach you can take to get an employee from zero to 60 in one day. The goal is to use a smart plan of attack to help your new employee learn and retain as much as possible. Spend all of the first day right, and you’ll see huge dividends of time and effort down the road.
Also, let’s keep any Powerpoint to an absolute minimum.

Start with the Big Picture


The first thing an employee needs is context of why they’re using Salesforce. Start with seeing what the new employee’s current knowledge of Salesforce is. Have them explain it in their own words if possible.

No prior knowledge? No problem. You have a clean slate to work with. Explain what Salesforce is in as simple and clear language as possible, and give a couple real life examples of the processes your company uses it for.

Depending on their role, explain how Salesforce is essential for their workflow. For example, if they’re a new addition to the sales team, walk them through how a deal is managed through Salesforce and how the company is able to run off the system.

Jump to What’s in it for Them

Before you start going deep into how Salesforce works and the specifics of what they’ll be doing, you need to show them exactly how they benefit from using Salesforce. Salesforce adoption is a big problem, and is often rooted in employees feeling that the system is not useful for them.

Walk through the personal and long-term benefits that someone will experience using the platform. Going back to our sales team example, you’ll want to explain how the time spent on data entry and using the system helps accurately track their quota, guarantees correct information when talking to a prospect, and will ultimately help them in the long run.
Before teaching any specifics, you want the new employee to feel they have a stake in learning the system.

Run Through All the Jargon

You want to move to hands-on time as quickly as possible, but you need to make sure all the jargon of Salesforce is clear first. Salesforce is full of words with highly specific meanings. Make a cheat sheet of all the essential ones beforehand. You can use Salesforce’s own introduction as a starting point.

Go over what each term means while showing the term in action. Don’t take anything for granted. Make sure each new term has a simple explanation.
After explaining all the important terms, give a little quiz by having them describe the key elements in their own words. Let them keep the cheat sheet just in case.

Spend the Bulk of the Day Hands Onstartup-photos(5)

If you only show someone how to do something, they’re likely to forget it almost immediately. You want your trainee to get hands on as quickly as possible, and the spend the day alternating between being guided through tasks and having the chance to try try on their own.

If possible, train them at the same spot where they will be working normally. Learning is associated with the environment that it takes place in. By learning in their normal office space, they’ll have an easier time remembering how to do things the next day.

If you have a large group, you’ll have to show the whole group before they can try things on their own, but the presentation should be quick. Get them started and then go around and personally answer questions.

The hardest temptation to resist is skipping the test for comprehension and not allowing the new employee a chance to try and make mistakes.

Have Resources and Check-Ins

If your new employee has had the big picture of Salesforce explained to them, seen how it benefits them personally, learned the key terms, and been able to spend the majority of the day hands on, then you should be able to cut them loose.

Leave them with resources, such as the jargon cheat sheet and extra instructions just in case they get a little confused. But otherwise, they should be good to go.

However, that doesn’t mean you leave them to fend for themselves. Take the time to check-in on the new employee a few times over the coming weeks and ask them if they have any questions. Expect them to need the occasional refresher, but if you took your time on the first day, you won’t have to worry about the time spent training being a waste.

The Author

Joshua Loomis

Joshua is a Sales and CRM expert at YourGrowthExpert who helps manage a variety of sales and Salesforce blogs.


    Arise Johns
    August 24, 2016 11:29 am
    Nowadays various technologies introducing each day. In this case, it's really difficult to keep employees updated with all the latest technologies. If we talk about Salesforce, almost every company knows the importance of Salesforce development. Best way to explain anything is giving demo, explanatory videos, live problem solving with Salesforce can help them understanding the role of Salesforce in realtime.
    Andreas Gerogiannis
    August 25, 2016 2:26 pm
    There is more than this ... you can train and re-enforce management directions in even less than a day. Have done it many times and its a training way based on an old theory. It really put people up to speed. Basically you can't expect newcomers to remember all these data in the first day that they meet with Salesforce ecosystem. You have to make sure that they can find whatever they have to work on even if they don't remember enough from that training day ;))

Leave a Reply