Salesforce Implementation: 8 Steps to Success

Anjelika Grigoryan
September 16, 2022
min read
September 19, 2023
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It's not easy to implement Salesforce, but with the right support and training tools, you can turn any team into experts. Here's how.
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Salesforce implementation is a famously tough process. And it can demoralize even the most experienced teams.

Projects to adopt CRM are known to fail at a rate of between 30 and 70 percent. But what if we said you can ensure the success of your software deployment and implementation?

 The success of your CRM installation project is influenced by how you approach planning, implementing and training.

Success needs preparation, dedication and strong sponsorship from your company's leadership team — no matter how big or small your business/the Salesforce CRM project is. 

Before you start, you have to know your user and supervisor requirements. Without a thorough understanding, you could easily over-customize the application — merely because it's so simple.

Here are eight steps to have a clear notion of what to start putting together as you start project kickoff implementation. 

8 steps for successful Salesforce implementation

1. Determine what you need (& want) from Salesforce

  • What motivates your desire to use Salesforce?
  • What do you want to accomplish in the long run? 
  • What does success mean to you?

How you picture the future is your vision. It should include your most cherished ideals. Knowing your company's vision — or the long-term, overarching goal — will help you stay focused on the most important things. 

Ask each department to list its duties, routine chores, sales procedures and workflows as a starting point. Based on the responses, you can see which departments will gain from Salesforce implementation and what those departments need Salesforce to do.

2. Set up a budget

Salesforce implementation costs can vary significantly. So your strategy will be heavily influenced by your funding. Now that you know what you want to get out of Salesforce, you can start looking into the options and expenses. 

Some costs include:

  • Implementation partner. 
  • Salesforce licenses. 
  • Data migration. 
  • IT maintenance. 
  • Salesforce training. 
  • Salesforce consulting.
  • End-user support. 
  • Integrations. 
  • Salesforce adoption.
  1. Choose the ideal specialist to meet your demands

To ensure that your Salesforce implementation is successful, lean on professionals. 

A Certified Administrator can help you determine your need and apply industry standards and good system knowledge to achieve it.

You can also hire a team of professionals (e.g., project managers, developers and consultants) to integrate Salesforce. 

Official Salesforce implementation partners aren't only Salesforce professionals; each has specialized knowledge of a specific industry to tweak their services as needed. Find a partner with a track record of executing businesses your size in your sector.

4. Create a plan for your organizational change management approach

You need to work on your organizational change management strategy to give your company the best chance of success. 

It can be hard getting your entire team used to a new CRM, so take advantage of different solutions to help them adjust.

For example, Scribe is a training tool that turns any process into a step-by-step guide. Auto-generate visual instructions for even the most complicated (and painful) Salesforce tasks. Scribe will capture everything you click and type to do your documenting for you.  

Here’s a Scribe all about how to create Salesforce account … that only took 30 seconds to make!

And with Scribe’s newest feature, Pages, you can combine several Scribes in a larger process doc with video, images and more. Here’s a Scribe Page in action. 

You can also work on diary management to get some essential management tips. 

Start by actively seeking out your employees' opinions through surveys and establishing a structure so they can provide feedback and ask questions as early as possible in the change implementation process. 

Make sure it's an anonymous system to get the most sincere responses. Plan your Salesforce implementation roll-out and communication strategy after that. 

You can always hire a fluent virtual administrative assistant to organize your workflow in a better way.

5. Integrate your CRM data

Before anyone can use it, you have to transfer data into the new Salesforce CRM.

Data migration is more complicated than many organizations imagine — especially when they underestimate the expertise and knowledge you need to complete the transfer. 

To make your transition as smooth as possible, invest in an implementation partner with experience in data migration in an org your size.

6. Introduce features slowly

One of the most significant parts of installing this widely used CRM is the unlimited possibilities it gives the wild number of features. Still, these same features can make learning to use the platform daunting and lead to low Salesforce adoption among your staff.

Introduce features gradually to smooth the transition and give staff members breathing room to pick things up and adjust. 

Introduce a few components and features for each team to get things going. You can start with the basics like account and contact management and then integrate side features like popup generators and other process automation. Ask for feedback and monitor the initial rollout performance. 

Then you can modify your procedure before introducing the next round. 

7. Never save on employee training

Never, under any circumstances, skimp on training. Salesforce has a high adoption curve, so you risk seeing lower adoption rates if you don’t support your rollout. 

If your learning and development (L&D) staff aren't well-equipped with Salesforce knowledge, you might want to think about hiring an implementation partner for this phase.

Offer employees extra tools for lifelong learning along with professional training.

8. Upkeep and support your CRM

Salesforce implementation never really ends. Plan to maintain your CRM — updates and adjustments are ongoing. 

Your Salesforce implementation partner will probably help you set up continuous maintenance. You'll also need to conduct regular reviews of your workflows and processes to make the necessary modifications.

You need careful planning and preparation for a successful installation — period. Secure executive sponsorship first to have backing as you assemble your project team and interact with the target audience. 

Configure and alter the software to suit the particular requirements of your business. Additionally, you should regularly:

  • Review and improve the application. 
  • Develop and improve your KPIs.
  • Constantly keep your end customers and the bigger picture in mind.

Salesforce implementation is an ongoing journey

Salesforce is a powerful CRM that can make your teams so much stronger. But that'll only work if you do it right. Take advantage of expert support and tools like Scribe to help you support your team. It's a never-ending journey that you can all take in stride.

Ready to try Scribe?

Scribe automatically generates how-to guides and serves them to your team when they need them most. Save time, stay focused, help others.