Forging lasting customer relationships is at the core of a great organization. With the implementation of a stellar CRM platform like Salesforce, an organization can provide high customer satisfaction to its clients throughout their customer journey, thereby creating lasting relationships with them. While it is exciting, it is also daunting to set it up swiftly and efficiently as it consists of various parts and sub-parts that need to be configured. Finally, any organization that implements Salesforce, also requires constant strategic guidance to cater to its unique needs.
A Salesforce implementation partner can be of great help in providing this guidance and bringing in the best followed practises from across industries. This is why choosing the right partner is the first and most crucial step in ensuring maximum returns from your Salesforce investment.
Let us look at the top 8 factors to be kept in mind while selecting a Salesforce implementation partner for your business.
Go for a Salesforce specialist
There are several customer-based SaaS products in the market. Many implementation partners offer generic consulting services for a multitude of such products, without expertise in any of those. Since Salesforce implementation is an expensive investment for a company, the best option is to go for a partner that is a Salesforce specialist. As their main source of revenue will be Salesforce, rest assured that they would invest in the best professionals who are adept with the ins and outs of this dynamic platform.
Pick a partner based on your project needs
One of the benefits of Salesforce’s cloud-based platform is that your choice of partner can be independent of their location. This enables the organization to focus on its project requirements as long as their framework does not require a local partner. Salesforce’s AppExchange is a great place to begin searching for the ideal partner for your project. AppExchange is a directory of all the businesses operating within the Salesforce ecosystem. Partners are listed there with their customer reviews, ratings, and specializations. This helps to shortlist partners that fit your needs at a preliminary level.
Your partner should have experience in similar projects
A rich experience of working within the same sector, industry, or domain can benefit your project immensely. The right partner brings along the experience of facing the challenges that are unique to your project. Not to mention, their knowledge of current industry trends can help you stay ahead of the curve. For instance, the current trend in real estate sector is to send a WhatsApp alert to the users instead of an SMS. With a simple adaptation like that, it improves user experience significantly. Experienced partners also have the ability to dissect business issues ahead of time and dish out improved solutions. This helps an organization save its time and costs.
A partner that can provide scalable solutions for long-term results
The success of Salesforce CRM implementation rests on a plan which can deliver long-term results. Scalability is a pre-requisite to achieve long-term results. Even a very well executed Salesforce CRM solution will need strategic guidance to navigate the challenges of a growing business. An organization should take cognizance of a partner’s ability to scale up its business by discovering new opportunities of business automation. Every organization is unique, and your implementation partner should be able to create a strategic plan that is both maintainable and scalable for business growth.
Choose a partner that can offer ongoing system support
All organizations operate in a dynamic environment. There are competitors to look out for, business financials to consider and customer trends to adhere to. All this translates into constant change for a business. You should, therefore, ask your partner if they are ready to provide ongoing support to tackle any changes. Specify the level and kind of support you need. Also, ask if they will be able to look beyond the current and obvious, offering not just solutions but advisory services for the future as well.
Check the capabilities of multiple partners before zeroing down on one
Once you have short-listed some partners, get down to assess how many certified professionals are working with them. Also, remember to check the partnership tier of the organization which is based on a complex algorithm that takes into account parameters such as customer satisfaction (CSAT) scores, certifications, projects, etc. All of this generates a Partner Value Score (PVS) for the partner. The higher the score, the higher is the tier. Salesforce awards its partners with tiers like Registered, Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Global Strategic Partner. In addition to the above, you should also ask your potential partners to give a proposal and a demo before finalizing them.
Discuss budget-related specifics beforehand
To utilize Salesforce optimally, one must set in motion a system that is built on experienced professionals who can offer astute analysis, ease your pain areas, and build your business with foresight. But quality comes at a price. Therefore, agree on a budget internally that will do justice to the task. Post which, discuss it with your partner to get on the same page.
Find a partner that fits the size of your business
Depending on the size of your business, you need a partner that can bring in the required infrastructure, team strength, and technical skills on the table. For a small organization, a partner specializing in small-sized technical solutions within small budgets would be a better fit. Similarly, a large firm with complex needs would require a partner that can offer them the requisite experience, technical skills, and infrastructure support.
To sum up, while there are some obvious factors such as budget and technical expertise, you must look for the hidden factors. Deep dive into your company’s needs. Research the case studies from within your industry. Talk to your peers from other companies that have implemented Salesforce long enough to see the results. With a systematic approach, your Salesforce investment will give you the desired outcomes.
Salesforce offers a host of features to organizations for managing the various stages of a customer’s life cycle. It recommends reliable implementation partners to these organizations. For instance, Manras Technologies is a Gold Salesforce Consulting Partner providing a range of services to SMEs and Fortune 500 companies. Manras uses Application Implementation Method (AIM) along with their Project Management Methodology throughout the implementation life cycle. They have predefined process flows and software templates which ensures smooth migration and quicker ROI generation. Some of their Salesforce implementation services include Sales and Service Cloud, Community Cloud, Quote to Cash services, Marketing Cloud services, and Pardot Services. Their skilled teams have undertaken more than 90 certifications and 100 class projects, within specified time and budget, thereby delivering successful projects consistently.