Before addressing the vast opportunities that a Salesforce Center of Excellence (CoE) can bring to your organization, let’s dive into some context first.
I was recently catching up with a friend of mine and we were discussing how for years companies have struggled to get the full value out of their Salesforce investment. We discussed how there are a myriad of reasons for this.
One reason is that Salesforce is one of the most innovative and acquisitive companies ever – with new feature releases every quarter, most companies don’t have the skills in-house needed to not only stay on top of all of the new information but also to determine how these new features and enhancements strategically fit into their organization’s goals, objectives, and future vision.
Another reason is that most companies who invest in Salesforce don’t have the right engine to consistently enhance and iterate on their Salesforce instance. We both agreed that now more than ever, it is critical for organizations who have Salesforce to invest in building out a world-class Center of Excellence (CoE).
Harnessing the full potential of the Salesforce platform requires more than just subscribing to the platform; it demands a systematic and strategic approach to consistently investing in your Salesforce org. This is where a CoE for Salesforce comes into play. In this post, I’ll explore why having a Salesforce CoE is essential for managing your Salesforce instance.
What is a Salesforce Center of Excellence?
A Salesforce Center of Excellence (CoE) is a dedicated team within an organization responsible for overseeing and optimizing the usage of Salesforce. Its primary goal is to ensure that Salesforce aligns with the company’s strategic objectives, enhances productivity, and continuously evolves to meet the business’s changing needs. A CoE comprises experts in Salesforce administration, development, and strategy, working together to maximize the platform’s potential. I’ve seen organizations of all sizes (both large and small) build out effective CoE teams with varying roles – at varying costs that made sense for their organization.
Why is a Salesforce CoE important?
One of the primary functions of a Salesforce CoE is to align the Salesforce instance with your organization’s strategic goals. The CoE acts as a bridge between the executive leadership and Salesforce users, ensuring that the platform is configured and customized to support specific business objectives.
Best Practices and Standards
Salesforce is an incredibly flexible and robust platform with numerous customization options that allow you to build anything you want. But without the right forethought, strategic direction, and established standards and best practices, it is very easy to start to accumulate technical debt. Without a Salesforce CoE, organizations risk inconsistent configurations, inefficient processes, and a lack of standardized best practices. A CoE establishes and enforces these best practices and standards, ensuring that everyone in the organization follows a consistent approach, which, in turn, leads to a healthier Salesforce org. This is especially important in order to ensure that you don’t build your way out of being able to take advantage of future features.
Salesforce is not a one-and-done solution. It needs continuous improvement and adaptation to remain effective. A Salesforce CoE takes charge of monitoring the platform’s performance, identifying areas for improvement, and implementing necessary changes. This proactive approach ensures that Salesforce remains a valuable asset as your organization grows and evolves.
User Training and Adoption
Even the most advanced technology is useless if your team doesn’t know how to use it effectively. A Salesforce CoE offers training and support to users, ensuring that they are proficient in using the platform’s features. If you’re struggling with adoption, a CoE is a must.
Scalability and Innovation
As your business grows, your Salesforce instance needs to scale with it. A CoE helps plan for scalability and keeps an eye on emerging Salesforce features and technologies. This ensures that your organization is always at the forefront of innovation and can adapt.
In today’s data-driven world, Salesforce has become an indispensable tool for organizations. However, to harness its full potential and ensure that it aligns with your business objectives, having a Salesforce CoE is crucial. A CoE not only provides strategic direction but also ensures that best practices are followed, users are trained, and the platform continually evolves to meet your organization’s changing needs. In essence, a Salesforce CoE is the driving force behind a successful and efficient Salesforce instance. Gone are the days of purchasing Salesforce and going through a singular implementation. Salesforce should be viewed as an integral organic piece of your organization that will continuously evolve as your business grows and changes. In order to truly realize the full value of your Salesforce investment, you need to be strategically building out your Center of Excellence and your engine for innovation. Contact us if you’d like a consultative partner to help you build or enable a CoE within your organization.