how to bridge the salesforce gap

Bridging the Salesforce Adoption Gap; Key Tips for Mid-Sized Organizations

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The success of Salesforce implementation depends on unanimous adoption by end-users. Unfortunately, rarely will you find everyone on the same page from the onset which leaves many wondering how to bridge the Salesforce adoption gap.

If you’re not convinced, consider the Whatfix CRM Survey 2020. In the survey;

  • 40% of respondents said they don’t regularly use their CRM system since data entry into the system is time-consuming.
  • 35% said they don’t feel equipped to use their CRM system and need more training, especially where regular updates are involved.

Many other similar studies reveal the same challenges. For instance, a recent Gartner study shows that sales representatives in enterprises use an average of 14 CRM-related applications daily. The resulting tech load means that users find it extremely difficult to master a single CRM and often revert to manual methods, such as spreadsheets, to get work done.

How to bridge the Salesforce adoption gap:  Key indicators of lack of adoption

There are four typical indicators, as follows;

Sales reps low login rates

One of the triggers to watch out for in learning how to bridge the Salesforce adoption gap is to watch the login rates. If you notice that your Salesforce users aren’t logging into their Salesforce accounts as frequently as you’d expect, something is wrong. Often, it means that the sales reps aren’t comfortable with the platform for whichever reasons. As a result, the CRM’s value remains unclear for the agents, who may find themselves reverting to alternative selling tools.

Reluctance to part with traditional spreadsheets

This is another telltale sign that your sales reps are not comfortable migrating to the Salesforce platform. The problem gets even bigger when sales management teams choose to turn a blind eye to the situation by accepting traditional spreadsheets. It’s usually the ultimate evidence that it’s not just one salesperson not using Salesforce. Such a situation creates a real risk of CRM failure.

Irregular Salesforce data update

If the users aren’t updating data in their Salesforce accounts regularly as required, it could be another sign of trouble. Lack of regular updates may manifest in many forms. For instance, a sales rep may fail to update customer contact data and purchase history regularly. This creates a further problem for the sales manager, who is rendered unable to track progress.

Negligent data entry

Finally, inefficient Salesforce adoption may also present itself in the form of poor data quality where reps fail to enter some parts of the data or enter it inaccurately. Negligent data entry is a recipe for data chaos as neither agents nor sales management can rely on incomplete or inaccurate information. It may lead to lost opportunities and erroneous accounting.

how to bridge the salesforce gap

Bridging the Salesforce Adoption Gap: 5 Critical Action Points

The good news is that you can take quick steps to bridge the gap between the trailblazers and latecomers or slow-learners;

1.      Map the Salesforce journey to set adoption priorities

Salesforce isn’t the alpha and omega of sales digitization. Instead, it’s a node in a network of tightly integrated applications that includes sales enablement, sales portals, contract lifecycle management, and sales compensation. Mapping the average sales workflow to highlight the role of Salesforce in this complex setup can help remove bottlenecks to adoption. Two factors are critical here, the exact tasks they need to accomplish on Salesforce and the complexity of these tasks.

2.      Automate some tasks to reduce the burden

This might seem trivial, but it could go a long way in easing the burden on your reps, which may make the onboarding and adoption process more straightforward. You want to especially focus on areas with too many manual navigation steps and data entry tasks. These tasks tend to bore users quickly, killing their excitement and enthusiasm about Salesforce. For instance, don’t wait for the user to change the language manually. You can use tools such as Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) to automate the task.

3.      Consider an “adoption everywhere” training approach

One of the most reliable ways of resolving the mystery about how to bridge the Salesforce adoption gap is user training. This is an indispensable constituent of smooth CRM adoption. Indeed, the best way to show your users that you’re committed to helping them master the Salesforce platform is by scheduling ongoing training and even inviting experts to speak to them occasionally. However, don’t stop at scheduled training. Instead, we recommend providing omnipresent learning/training resources by deeply integrating your LMS and content repositories.

4.      Help users adapt to the change

Jumping from spreadsheets and other traditional methods to Salesforce is a giant leap. Users will struggle in the new environment, even if they have basic training. To avoid this problem, plan for upcoming changes in advance and communicate them in a timely manner. More importantly, be the change champion and lead with the right attitude. Show true interest in their challenges and difficulties and offer the right feedback. It goes a long way.

How to bridge the Salesforce Adoption Gap: Conclusion

If you’re serious about how to bridge the Salesforce adoption gap in your organization, you must be willing to fight for your users. Lead the movement, provide the necessary training, and help the users make the jump.

Author: Shoaib
Shoaib Chaudhary is an entrepreneur and influencer with over 13 years of experience in the technology industry. He’s influencing global leaders to exceed company goals while advancing social responsibility. Shoaib is a certified Salesforce Consultant and professional with years on helping businesses achieve their digital transformation goals.