Best Practices and Strategies to Maximize Salesforce Adoption



“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” – George Bernard Shaw.

Progress and evolution are crucial for any business. An evolving business adapts to changing times, meets customer needs and sees value in innovative ways to increase revenue. The key to progress lies in the right combination of tools, processes and people. However, the bridge from evolution to progress is built upon one word: adoption.

Salesforce is a tool that can bring about an incredible array of benefits for a business, but the secret to realizing its potential is adopting the platform fully and successfully. Research shows only 50% of enterprise customer relationship management (CRM) features are actively used by employees. To maximize the benefits of using Salesforce, successful and comprehensive adoption is a critical step.

In this blog, we’ll focus on some key steps for increasing Salesforce adoption across teams and maximizing its value.

Begin by knowing the system

Improving and boosting Salesforce adoption begins with identifying gaps, fixing systems and simplifying the process. Two of the most common reasons why Salesforce adoptions run into issues are:

  • The lack of an answer to the million-dollar question, “What’s in it for me?”
    Salesforce is only as useful as the data put into it. Users must be diligent about entering complete and comprehensive information to truly enjoy the benefits it provides.For executive leadership, the insights driven by this data are immeasurable. It attunes forecasts about sales and helps identify key trends in customer behavior, personas and demographics. However, a sales rep’s inability to access those insights to drive their own sales and opportunities via these inputs can be frustrating and cause Salesforce to look like just another tedious, irrelevant platform. To avoid this, organizations need to put workflows in place that enable users to access these valuable, detailed reports with ease.
  • Lack of effective communication channels to share updates or address concerns
    Another potential cause of low Salesforce adoption is a lack of communication channels or feedback loops to share questions about its use. Understanding how user groups interface with Salesforce, whether they are facing any challenges and whether they need more help, are some of the issues organizations need to address early on in the adoption process.Of course, the best solution is talking to the end users on a regular basis; however, when those users are spread across a business or the world, this can be problematic. Open communication can be tricky and is made even more challenging with the presence of organizational hierarchies. In many cases, employees are hesitant to provide their feedback or ask questions for fear of looking uninformed, which leads to only a partial view of any potential issues. This is where a partner and Salesforce expert like Material provides tremendous value. An outside, unbiased third party can easily facilitate conversations, answer questions and share feedback, ensuring a successful deployment across the organization.


Ensure culture outweighs tools to align stakeholders

The saying “build it and they will come” doesn’t stand up well when it comes to technology adoption across an organization. Involving stakeholders is crucial when making significant organizational changes. This is where the organization’s leadership can and should become the flagbearers for adoption.

As part of this, it’s essential that the leadership team model behavior for Salesforce adoption, helping create a culture of enthusiasm and adoption by the rest of the organization. Their devotion to modelling and seeking buy-in throughout the organization is paramount. As part of this cultural change, three key messages should be consistently reinforced:

  • Salesforce is an excellent business tool we are committed to using
  • It will help all of us across the team
  • We are investing in making Salesforce work well for every user and we want your feedback

The leadership team must truly understand, embrace and support Salesforce adoption for it to be embraced by employees throughout an organization. Gathering support from senior- and mid-level leaders is one of the most effective Salesforce adoption strategies.

Salesforce Adoption Trends

By displaying enthusiasm for and about the use of Salesforce, the leadership team can set an example for adoption. By showing personal interest and investment in using its features, they will motivate their team members to do the same. Leaders can show buy-in by starting conversations in chats, sharing reports and insights made possible by its analytics, regularly reviewing Salesforce metrics with their teams and celebrating active users.

Change is always challenging, and feedback is essential to address any issues and ensure any new platform is embraced and used across the organization. Understanding the teams’ concerns about how Salesforce might impact their day-to-day workflows and performance is crucial.

One method to help increase understanding and adoption is to create a working group with key users from each department, team and role. Augment that effort with a survey to all users to better understand what they need to be successful with Salesforce and how it can better fit into their workflows. By making Salesforce adoption part of the company culture, it will increase adoption and use across the company.

 Training users & creating value

As with any major change, new Salesforce users won’t be able to master every feature in the beginning. However, that learning curve can be accelerated through a variety of methods.

An introduction to the basics and easy-to-digest segments, like managing accounts and navigating the menu, can be a great way to start. Following that, organizations can prioritize and tailor training based on the specific needs of each team.

This approach helps increase understanding and, subsequently, productivity as employees apply their new skills. It is also beneficial to make it easy to access records of lessons and learnings rather than having them buried in various folders and sources. By being able to quickly access and refer to these materials, employees will more easily and efficiently master the platform, speeding the learning process and reducing friction.

Additionally, organizations should conduct audits around Salesforce automation opportunities for at least a year following the deployment. With regular audits, organizations can help their sales teams improve productivity by automating repetitive but important administrative tasks.

Here are some of the processes that organizations can streamline with Salesforce automation:

  • Data integration and exporting capabilities
  • Workflow automation of internal procedures
  • Approvals automation
  • Adaptive business logic and strategy suggestion automation


Material can help maximize Salesforce adoption and value

To take advantage of all the benefits Salesforce offers and increase its adoption, you need a technology partner who understands your unique business needs and can customize Salesforce for your specific use cases. At Material, we are certified Salesforce experts and partners, with the capabilities to help your business streamline the adoption process and create seamless experiences for your users. To learn more about our approach, contact us for an expert consultation.