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15 Tips & Tricks from our Salesforce Consultants

  • elizabeth_keenan

Are you looking for little ways to improve your org and its performance? Maybe you’d like to be able to use Salesforce better, or maybe you are a Salesforce trailblazer who likes to read and learn whenever possible.

The functionality and complexity of the Salesforce platform truly is impressive. There are so many ways to improve performance, eliminate inefficiencies and automate processes.

We’re sharing some tips and tricks with you today so that hopefully you can continue to improve your Salesforce solution, learn something new and develop your skills further.

We recently asked our expert consultants, developers and admins to share any tips or advice for using Salesforce. Below, we have highlighted 15 tips to share with you and hope you find them useful.

1. Admin ‘Login As’ Feature

As an Admin, don't forget the "Login as" feature. This function allows you to log in as a user into the system.

For example, if you're an admin and you have a ‘Sales User’ in the system that is experiencing a problem, oftentimes you will not be able to reproduce the issue they are experiencing, as you will have most system permissions available to you.

By logging in as the user in question, you can see things from their perspective, and use Salesforce with their permissions and record visibility. This is very effective in helping you to resolve issues that your end users may be experiencing.

Take a look at this helpful article from Salesforce to see exactly how to do this:

2. Data Migration Using External Id

Sometimes we need to migrate data from one Salesforce environment to another or from another system into Salesforce. There could be an issue when the data is related to each other, for example, contacts would be linked to accounts and of course, as we migrate them into Salesforce, we want to keep that relationship.

The issue is that each contact is linked to an account using the Id or the unique reference from the source system. As we push the accounts into Salesforce, each of them will get its own new Id.

We could take the list on inserted accounts with the new Ids and use vlookup in excel to map the new account id to each contact. That might be a lot of work, especially if there is a lot of different types of data that we're looking to migrate.

Another possible way to it is to add a temporary field in Salesforce called "Old Id" which will be an external Id and push to that field the unique reference from the old system. Then we can use this external Id field to make sure each contact is linked to the right account.

In the end, once we're done with the migration, we can remove this field.

3. Extensions

There are a lot of chrome extensions you can get for Salesforce. We asked our consultants which ones they prefer and the results are in. They shared these 3 as the most useful SFDC Chrome Extensions:

  1. Salesforce Inspector
  2. Salesforce Organizer
  3. Salesforce Navigator

4. Extending Data Validation

It's very common for a lot of companies to have data quality issues, especially when many people within the company use Salesforce for different processes. 

In order to improve the data quality, a lot of companies add validation rules in Salesforce to make sure users enter data in at the right time and place.

When adding these validations, a good tip is to enforce the data quality going forward and not to add this rule on all of the existing data in the system. Unless of course, someone is willing to start fixing all of the historical data. When adding the validation on all the data, we could be blocking different processes from updating those records and potentially causing problems.

5. Custom Permissions

Always use custom permissions when developing new functionality that should only be available for certain users. Even if you're sure the functionality would not be used for certain users, still add a custom permission to it and make sure this is how the access to your function is controlled.

6. ‘Field History’

Enable Field History on all objects that you use and track updates to important fields, as well as fields updated by code. If records have been updated via code and you have tracked the fields the code touches, you may have valuable information in the Field history. In many cases, the field history is not enabled allowing for no field tracking at all.

7. Support tickets

When seeking support, always provide steps to reproduce an issue along with a screenshot. It will save time and emails in the long run. Support may even reply with a solution/answer rather than questions.

8. Trailhead

If you’re new to Salesforce, make use of Trailhead - Salesforce's learning platform. It is a great place to get to grips with all the functionality of the various clouds, as well as access and try out new features. Start earning your badges and blaze a trail!.

9. Get Involved

Relish the opportunity of exposure to the Salesforce community. Attend any salesforce events you can, like Dreamforce (San Francisco) and Salesforce World Tour (check the Salesforce website for a date in your local city). 

These events are an incredible experience and a great place to network with customers, partners, Salesforce employees, etc. You'll also see up-coming features on the Salesforce platform and can attend demos and earn badges in the various campgrounds located onsite. Well worth a visit.

Take part in Salesforce communities, join local user groups and get certified.

10. Salesforce Search in Chrome

This can be done by right-clicking the search box and selecting ‘save as search engine’. You can add a keyword for the search. Eg SF. So by typing in ‘SF userX’ into Chrome search box, you can search salesforce. 

11. Study Salesforce Releases Ahead of Time

With 3 big updates every year, this can be highly beneficial as you will know what features are coming and what to expect in each release. This way you can know what impact the updates will have on your existing system. This will save you time in the long run. 

12. Create List Views and Email Templates at the Start.

By creating list views and email templates, not only are users reducing workload but increasing productivity and achieving time savings as well. List views can be very specific and each user may have a variety of list views specific to their work. With email templates, you can optimise emails for open and interaction rate. Email templates are easily shared with co-workers which makes learning and collaborating much easier. 

13. Search Tip

Try putting the word AND between the criteria you are searching when looking for records that match with more than one piece of criteria? Eg: CompanyName AND London. 

14. Sales Console

One of our team recently started using the Sales Console. What did they find? That it is a much more efficient way for them to work on their Opportunities and manage Accounts/Contacts. It gives a split view, so users can work and update information faster. With the subtab on Opportunities, you can tab between opportunities from the same UI. They said, “Sales Console is a clear benefit of using Salesforce Lightning”.

15. AppExchange

Check out the AppExchange. The Salesforce AppExchange is essentially like the App Store or Google Play Store but for your Salesforce org. You can download free and paid apps that can not only enhance your usability but save time and improve sales etc. Note - You can check out our Forcecast & QA Scorecard apps.

16. Bonus Tip

Remember to regularly back-up your data - you never want to risk losing all your data.

So that’s it, 15 tips from our team. We hope these tips help you excel in your usage of Salesforce.

If you have any tips to share, please feel free to get in touch and share them with us!

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