Salesforce Lightning pages provide an opportunity to create dynamic, user-centered interfaces – but unfortunately, most organizations fail to unleash their full potential.
In this guide, we will explore how to bridge the gap between what is technically possible and how it can be best utilized to create efficient and delightful user experiences.
Problem: Lightning Pages are Being Underutilized
Most organizations I come across are not using the capabilities of Lightning pages to the fullest. Actually, at best, I would classify their usage of Lightning pages as “page layout plus”.
Virtually all fields on an object are present at all times. All related lists are crammed together in a single tab, and occasionally, there is a single screen flow embedded on the side. That is usually the extent of using Lightning page capabilities.
Lightning pages allow us to make virtually every component on the page (individual fields, entire field sections, screen flows, buttons, actions, reports, and many others) conditionally available based on different rules. In theory, this allows us to craft an extremely flexible user experience – but in practice, we rarely seize that opportunity.
Let’s imagine you want to capture records for your employees in Salesforce to manage their training and performance. Let’s also say you have a requirement to capture job candidates to help manage recruitment. Most people would choose to create two separate custom objects and list all fields on a single page.
However, considering some sensitive information (address, contact details, birthdays, etc.) is shared across both entities, and assuming your organization does not have an enormous turnover (thousands of candidates or employees), with the clever use of Lightning pages, we could opt just to have one type of object “Staff__c”.
That object could hold potential, current, and past employee data and change what data is available based on record attributes. That would also allow us to store sensitive information in only one place, which makes it easier to ensure it is protected.
Reason: Not a Technical Issue, But a Design Challenge
Despite the robust features of Lightning pages, the lack of utilization doesn’t lie in technical complexity. You can create stunning experiences without having to code custom Lightning Web Components. The real challenge is understanding when and how.
Most people are unaware of when and how these capabilities should be utilized to maximize benefits. Can you make any field or component conditionally visible? If so, that’s great! But which fields should you apply this to, and when?
Solution: Leveraging the Power of UPN Diagrams
UPN (Universal Process Notation) can be instrumental in creating an organized, dynamic, and delightful user experience. While UPN is a business process diagramming standard required for business analyst certification, it can be used just as effectively for user experience design. Therefore, It can help business analysts craft UX requirements and, if adopted by UX designers (if you have any), introduce a shared language between BAs and designers.
By mapping the business process/jobs to a diagram with detailed inputs and outputs for each step, we can define what information is needed at each stage. We can then use that diagram to design our Lightning Experience and decide what components, fields, and information to make visible at what stage of using a given object.
Let’s come back to our “Staff__c” example. Below is a process map of the employee lifecycle with details of the required information at each step. The table then presents the required data and actions for each step with conditions based on the diagram.
While we could display all fields, all related lists, and all screen flows at all times – they are not needed all the time! Some actions and some information are only relevant at one point in the record’s lifecycle. So, we can use the process diagram to figure out what to show and what to hide depending on the stage.
Summary: Harnessing the Lightning
The custom “Staff__c” object showcases how Salesforce Lightning pages can be used to create a dynamic, role-specific interface. Whether dealing with candidates in the interview process or tracking employees’ performance over time – Lightning pages, guided by UPN, can deliver the right information at the right time.
This methodology transcends mere layouts and empowers a more engaged and efficient user experience. By applying these principles, Salesforce Business Analysts and Designers can leverage the true potential of Lightning pages for customized and responsive experiences.
By making each page show exactly the right information at the right time and decluttering the UI, we are decreasing the mental load on the user. Simultaneously, creating delightful experiences that will help drive adoption and improve data quality.