So you know you need to move to Salesforce Lightning but you are having a hard time getting off your butt and finding the time. Welcome to my world. Before Longshore Consulting's Lightning Boot Camp starts May 1st (be sure to click the subscribe button on the right to stay tuned for the latest details!), Trailhead is the best way to get started learning Lightning.
Still not super motivated? I hear you. Don't worry, #AdminHour has your back! Join super special awesome guest trailblazer Rita Leverett and I on Thursday, April 20, 2017 *live* at 10am PT/1pm ET for #AdminHour: Lightning Trailhead-athon! Together we'll earn a Lightning Trailhead badge, in real time, encouraging and answering each other's questions as we move down the trail together! It will be fun, free, and interactive - join us!
Feeling motivated and want instant gratification that only points and badges can provide? Fantastic! Let's take a tour of what Trailhead has to offer in the Lightning department. When we first arrive at Trailhead, I like to find and filter modules and trails based on Lightning Experience, which you can do just like this:
For today and for #AdminHour, let's focus on the App Customization module. Why is this Trailhead module so awesome? Because it essentially teaches you how to customize the Salesforce Lightning Experience in about an hour. Let's dig in some more...
Trailhead's App Customization module has five sections. The first is Modify Page Layouts, which is great because for those of us coming from Classic, it's almost exactly the same as what we're used to! So this should take less than the allotted 15 minutes, but the screen shots in Lightning are great for orienting you to where basic items like the edit button and related lists are hiding.
Second we get to Customize Compact Layouts, which is the new for Lightning highlights panel at the top of record pages and is SUPER IMPORTANT because without doing this in your instance you will need to click a lot more (and as of this writing, wait longer), which is bad.
Now we get some action with Customize Actions which are amazing productivity boosters, which is great since everyone will lose some time getting used to where everything is in Lightning when you first make the migration over from Classic. So why not ask your users what they want and deliver? Now I'm not sure if you should make a global action to deliver each user a pizza when they click 'Order Pizza,' but I'll leave that up to you.
The fourth module starts to get a bit funky, but hang on, we can do this! Create Custom Objects and Fields is mostly what you know how to do if you know how to create these things in Classic. Great news, right? Yes and no. On this trail, we're going to take our skills up a notch by creating a custom Visualforce help page for your custom object! I know, I know, it sounds really scary. But thanks to Team Trailhead, it's not! There's code you can cut and paste and update for your use case. Surely a raise can't be far behind if you do this, right???
Finally, we conclude our short badge trek with Create and Customize Lightning Apps. This is handy because switching apps looks different in Lightning, and there are a few standard apps that you will probably want to customize or edit right away before you go live with Lightning. Also if you change the name of your standard app from 'Sales' to 'Our Company's Stuff' it might be more clear to people where to go if they accidentally change apps and need to get back to their standard grouping of objects.
So that's it! What's your favorite Lightning Trailhead Badge? Let me know and it could be the star of a future #AdminHour!
Are you hesitant about moving to the Salesforce Lightning Experience? Me too. I've been using the current Salesforce user interface (UI) for years, and the nonprofit clients I work with here at Longshore Consulting just need a functional, affordable CRM. A lot of the bells and whistles offered by Salesforce Lightning seem great but two questions remain:
1. When will I have the time to make the switch to Lightning?
2. How do I do my job in Lightning?
In other words, I know I need to make the switch to Lightning, and I don't want to fall behind, but my main goal is social change (and fundraising, programs management, civic engagement, etc.), not running the world's greatest database (although of course I love Salesforce). Sound familiar?
To help your journey to Lightning (which, it's true, will basically be inevitable at some point*), I've curated these resources to help you out - please feel free to contribute more in the comments so I can update this post!
*While technically Salesforce will not retire Salesforce Classic (sometimes referred to as the Aloha UI), all webinars and demos you see from Salesforce, for example at Dreamforce, and all documentation, are quickly being moved to Lightning. Even more important is that no new features are being developed for Salesforce Classic (or at least, the bare minimum of features/improvements are being made to classic). Salesforce wants to do as much as possible to entice everyone to make the switch to Lightning.
1. Review this handy list of Lightning vs. Classic Features. It will super quickly allow you to see what's available and what's not in some areas you may have heard conflicting information about, like reports (and of course keep in mind more functionality is added each release). So as you can see, if you're ride or die with pie charts, you may need to wait or just plan on switching into classic to use those (but P.S. you shouldn't be using pie charts anyways - read 'death to pie charts'). While you're on this page, be sure to Preview Your Org in Lightning Experience and run the Lightning Experience Readiness Check - two great tools that take no time at all!
TIME REQUIRED: 5-10 minutes to review the list, 30 minutes to preview your org, 1 minute to run the readiness check (then 5-30 minutes to review the report).
2. The Lightning Roadmap: That's right, Salesforce has actually posted on the Internet when they're doing what with Lightning, so you can know when you really need to make the switch and can plan accordingly. A few that stand out to me as coming in the 'future', meaning beyond Summer '17, that may be important to nonprofits, include:
- Lists - Mass Inline Edit
- Reports - Search within Folders
- Reports - Printable View
- Dashboards - Scheduling
Just remember, you can always switch back to Classic at anytime to access these features!
TIME REQUIRED: ~10 minutes to review the roadmap
3. Understand what changes you would need to make for the NPSP to work. AKA 'known limitations,' some things will function differently in Lightning if you use the Nonprofit Success Pack and it's important you review the link to see what changes you might need to make so you can continue to be awesome (and do things like create Donation records as easily as possible).
TIME REQUIRED: ~15 minutes to review the list; ~2 hours to make the changes depending on your skill level (instructions are provided).
4. Trailhead Don't get overwhelmed that this trail has 7 badges. You can pick and choose individual units as you need them and remember to use Trailhead to train your end users, too!
TIME REQUIRED: I recommend ~15 minutes a day in the two weeks before you go live with Lightning.
TIME SAVED: All the hours you would have spent writing training materials to train your staff on Lightning!
5. Lightning Resource Inception: There's a lot to learn about Lightning, so it's a good idea to benchmark this post and other resources that you find most helpful. Here are some fantastic resources you'll want to come back to again and again:
- The Salesforce.org Webinar: Migrate to the Lightning Experience
- Healthy Org: Migrate to Lightning Experience
Of course, I most want to know what *you* think of Lightning and all of Salesforce. Longshore Consulting's second annual Nonprofits who Salesforce survey is happening right now, and if you take five minutes to fill it out you will be entered to win over $600 in prizes! Thanks!
Happy Birthday Salesforce! As Salesforce turns 18 today, it's important to remember that as any adolescent emerges into adulthood, there will be growing pains. And so that's what we're seeing with Salesforce a bit, as the company-wide keynote events need to serve larger and larger audiences... a few of us are bound to get left out. What am I talking about? On March 7, 2017, Marc Benioff, Parker Harris, and other Salesforce executives held a fiscal year 2018 kickoff event that showed the power of Salesforce to 3 million viewers from Salesforce offices and user groups around the world. Here's a full recap and link to the video.
It was inspirational and fun as always, but the two companies featured, Coca-Cola and Amazon Web Services, might be harder for nonprofits and small businesses to relate to. That left me wondering: how much of what is generally available with Salesforce Einstein is now applicable to nonprofits?
My answer: not a lot, if anything.
There's an extra cost for a lot of the (i.e., most exciting) new Einstein features, including:
Most of the features are designed for Sales.
What is ready for nonprofits that takes advantage of Einstein AI?
Special thanks for Adam Olshansky's excellent Spring 16 recap blog article for helping me to understand all there is to know on this topic! Would you like to learn more? Adam and I did a great overview of the Spring '17 Salesforce release and Salesforce Lightning which you can watch right now here:
One of the most popular blog posts in the Longshore Consulting blog archives is this article, "5 Tips on How to Use Salesforce Sandboxes for Nonprofits" (re-posted below). While it's still a great article, a few things have changed since I first wrote it two years ago, so I thought I'd republish it here to make it easier to find on this site and to offer some new tips and resources.
Here are four additional big improvements and tips to help you use sandboxes with ease:
1. Nonprofits now get a free Partial Sandbox! This is an amazing way to include some data in your sandbox so you don't have to type a bunch of test records. Not sure how to do this? Check out this #AdminHour, starting at 23 minutes in, where I walk you through how to set one up (there's also a ton of great tips about how to test whether your nonprofit is ready to switch to Lightning in that webinar recording, by the way).
2. You can now learn more about Sandboxes with Trailhead! Get tons more Sandbox details and earn some awesome points, and be sure to check out the extensive list of resources to learn more, on this unit of the Application Lifecycle Management trail.
3. There's now an Apex class screen that comes up when you're creating a sandbox that's a little confusing: just ignore it and click 'Create.'
4. Sandbox access: if you have a user who can't access the sandbox, you'll typically need to go in and: a. change their email to their actual email address, b. have the user click through on the email getting them to verify the change to their email address (and on the subsequent screen have them log in with their sandbox username, i.e. being sure to append '.sandboxname' to their email address), c. confirm with the user they're now able to log in to the sandbox, and if not send them a password reset (from within the sandbox setup screen), and d. tell the user to set their sandbox password to the same as their production password for ease of use. Ideally, before generating the sandbox, you should make sure all users are created in production to have as few issues as possible with sandbox logins. Also be sure to have people login to the sandbox the day *before* your staff training so you don't have to spend precious group time troubleshooting login issues.
Good luck on your sandbox journey! For ongoing tips and Salesforce support in an interactive format, be sure to sign up for #AdminHour, which is free the first and third Thursday of every month at 10am PT/1pm ET. Hope to see you there!
5 Tips on How to Use Salesforce Sandboxes for Nonprofits
Salesforce Sandboxes are super fun and helpful places to test out changes to your Salesforce system before you put those changes in place in your live production environment. But when and why should you use them? What do you do with them if they’re blank? When should you refresh your sandboxes? Here are five tips to help you use them without fear: 1. Don’t be afraid – they’re meant to be played in! Just click: Setup –> type ‘Sandboxes’ in the Quick Find –> click ‘Sandboxes’ –> click ‘New Sandbox.’ You’ll likely have Developer and Developer Pro sandboxes available (assuming you’re a nonprofit). Type in an easy name to append to your Salesforce user name, like ‘test.’ Remember when you log in to go to https://test.salesforce.com/. To log in, use: firstname.lastname@example.org and your regular password. 2. Discuss before refreshing. When you refresh a sandbox, you push a new copy of your production environment’s metadata into the sandbox, completely writing over everything that’s in the sandbox already. In English, that means if you added a new field in your Salesforce instance called ‘My New Field’, then refreshed the sandbox, you would now see that field in the sandbox (but not the records or values you had entered into that field). If you have more than one Salesforce administrator at your organization (like most nonprofits), be sure to communicate clearly before you refresh the sandbox. Otherwise, if you refresh it without asking, you could erase the workflow rules, applications, or code another team member is testing out in the sandbox. 3. Use one sandbox as a documentation resource – after all, nonprofits get 7 free sandboxes! Just be clear in the sandbox description field. For example, one sandbox could be named ‘backup’ and the Description could read, ‘Backup of our organization’s Salesforce instance as of February 2015, before we upgraded to the Nonprofit Starter Pack v 3.0, in case we want to refer to any of the configuration before upgrade.’ Note it’s a good idea to log in to your backup sandbox at least once to check all your metadata (configuration) is there before you perform any major changes in production. 4. Know what can and can’t be moved into production. Apps from the app exchange, for example, can’t be moved, but it’s still a really great idea to test them in the Sandbox to see if they’re a good choice for your organization. The full list of what can be moved using a change set can be found here. 5. Quickly create test data if your sandbox is empty. Unless you pay for a partial or full sandbox, your sandbox will not have any records, so be sure to quickly enter a few test records when you login for the first time after creating or refreshing your sandbox. Remember to start with Organizations, then add a Contact, and then add a record to the new custom object you just created if needed (e.g. lookup relationships). This part can be frustrating because each time you refresh the sandbox you’ll need to start over and create these test records again. To make it easier, I keep a few test names on hand (think ‘Kermit de Frog’ and ‘Test Testerson’) and only fill in the required fields. Have any other tips or suggestions? Leave them in the comments!
If these cats are the closest you've come to seeing Salesforce Service Cloud in action, don't worry! #AdminHour is here to show you the basic concepts of the Service Cloud, give you resources to learn more, and encourage you to get paws-on with this fascinating part of Salesforce that's right under your whiskers.
Of course, one of your best resources for learning and getting hands on with the Service Cloud is Trailhead, where you can check out the entire Service Cloud Trail.
Two other things that may surprise you:
1. Many elements of the Service Cloud, like Cases, are free!
2. Many nonprofits can use the full Service Cloud for free!
For more information, check out #AdminHour, explore Trailhead, check under 'Company Information' in setup to see what licenses you have, or check with your Account Executive. You can also comment here and I'll do my best to help!
Want to keep learning more about Salesforce? #AdminHour is fun, free, and interactive the first and third Thursday of every month at 10amPT/1pm ET. Upcoming topics include Salesforce consulting and the Spring 2017 release. Learn more, register, and catch replays right here.
How's your week been? Feeling a little stressed and anxious? As I write this, I just got home from a friend's housewarming party, where the typical response to: 'How are you doing?' was 'I'm ok, considering...'
The 'considering' was code for 'I never thought a Trump Presidency would be this bad.'
So keeping in mind this is a professional blog for social change oriented Salesforce folks, I thought I'd take a technology perspective on what technology ties are to the Trump Presidency, if any, and/or what those of us who work in technology or use technology can do when a new policy takes effect, say to defund the Affordable Care Act or ban Muslim refugees, that we do not agree with. Here are a few thoughts:
1. Hold your technology company's leadership accountable: I could not have been more proud to see that Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, attended the women's march in San Francisco on Saturday, January 21, to advocate for equality. Marc is consistently vocal in advocating for equality, which matters because as a business owner his voice resonates loudly in audiences that are conservative and liberal. He also represents thousands of jobs in dozens of countries. The CEO of Uber, by contrast, has come under criticism for joining President Trump's economic advisory group. Work at Twitter? Maybe the next time you're housing a Republican victory party you could tweet your CEO and suggest it be moved to another locale.
2. Get on the Trail! That's right, there are Salesforce Trailhead modules that can help you be an awesome ally for equality! Check out the new Equality Ally Strategies badge and all of the diversity focused badges! Use the knowledge you learn to support and advocate for your colleagues of all backgrounds at all levels of the organization, in addition to encouraging your organization's leadership to take action like you did in tip #1.
3. Use technology to make social change! In addition to using Salesforce itself to organize your data, members, donors, actions, campaigns, and more to change the world, a barrage of new apps and web sites have flooded the market encouraging you to contact your elected officials and take other steps to stay engaged. But what apps can you trust? What apps won't crash? Only time will tell, but please let me know what you're having success with! Two that I have found so far are: Showing Up for Racial Justice (primarily white people organizing for racial justice; has chapter organizations across the country; why not start one at your company?) and The Indivisible Guide (for organizing to get your message through to elected officials, written by former congressional staffers). I've tried several other mobile apps and online petition sites and many have unclear information about who the founders are and what their affiliations are, and most ask for detailed personal information in order to send a canned email to an elected official, which does not seem to be an effective means of persuading an elected official but is a more effective means of gathering personal contact information to send endless emails that the signer may or may not wish to receive.
4. Take care of yourself. Getting enough rest, limiting screen time and news/media exposure to certain hours, doing activities that bring your joy and fulfillment, and staying connected to community/ pets/family are important. You are worth it. The more healthy and sane you are, the better you will be able to reflect that to the world, and the world could use as much health and sanity as you can spare right now.
What ideas do you have? What apps have helped you change the world? What do you see as the role of tech in the new administration? Good luck out there!
When my friend Pierre told me he had three Salesforce certifications, I was shocked. I thought there was no possible way I could ever accomplish such a feat. Well, it's been a few years, but here I am with three Salesforce certifications (Salesforce Administrator, Salesforce Sales Cloud Consultant, and Salesforce Developer), studying for my fourth! I can't believe it. And I *hate* multiple choice tests with a passion. So here are some hints and resources to help you along the way. The most important thing I can say is: you can do it!
Tip 1: Use Salesforce materials! Salesforce creates the certification exams, so be sure to use Salesforce materials when you study. Your first stop should be the Salesforce certification website, where the first thing you should download and use for organizing your studying is the exam guide for the certification you're going after (e.g., the Salesforce Certified Administrator Exam Guide). If you're on a budget, Salesforce Help & Training and the various implementation guides Salesforce produces are your best bet - simply take the topics in the study guide, google them, then practice, understand, and memorize the definitions and concepts from Salesforce's own documentation.
Tip 2: Join a study group *and* get a study buddy. There are several free study groups forming regularly in the Success Community and Power of Us Hub, or you can always form your own. Keep in mind, though, that the exams are difficult and you'll need to spend many hours outside of the study group studying. I highly recommend finding a one on one study buddy to keep you on track and to divide and conquer some of the research and sifting through all of the various subject areas on each exam. It's also great to quiz each other and clarify concepts. You can post in a group like Girlforce that you want a study partner, or ask at your local user group meeting.
Tip 3: Does your Salesforce organization have Premier or Premier Success? Are you sure? Take a quick second to double check because online, on-demand certification prep courses are included with these support plans. Otherwise, it's worth asking your organization to send you to a Salesforce University live or live online class, or at the very least pay for your exam fees. If you're paying out of pocket, consider the reduced cost exam fees surrounding Dreamforce.
Tip 4: Use free technology and apps! While Salesforce Trailhead is not designed to help you get certified, it can certainly introduce you to the concepts on certification exams and get you hands on in applying them in a free developer org (or Trailhead playground). The most useful aspect of Trailhead when studying for certification is probably the 'Resources' section at the end of each section, since it has a ton of handy links to Salesforce documentation.
Using flashcard apps like Quizlet can also be great, as long as you make and study your own flashcards to ensure accuracy.
Want more tips? Be sure to attend or catch the replay of #AdminHour: Let's Talk Salesforce Certifications, which you can register for right here.
So you've decided to get the 10 free donated licenses from salesforce.org for your nonprofit - congratulations! If one of the reasons you're excited about Salesforce is because of the license donation, you're probably interested in how you can keep your costs down and your return on investment high while using this incredibly flexible constituent relationship management software in the cloud. Here are a few tips:
1. Be flexible. This can mean a few things, of course, but the general rule of thumb to remember is to focus more on what you need to accomplish rather than how it needs to be accomplished. In other words, put your needs in the form of "we need to report on how many new donors we have attracted each month" rather than "we need a report in PDF format with a green column showing how many new donors we obtained for each calendar month."
2. Get on the trail! The more you're willing to use learn yourself, using the fantastically free Salesforce Trailhead online learning tool, the better off you will be. Think about it - spending a lot of money per hour to have a consultant do a custom training for your Salesforce administrator or staff is probably not worth it for about 80% of what your staff needs to learn. If your staff can complete certain trails and badges before doing certain customized training with your consultants, you will save hundreds if not thousands of dollars. What's even better, is that this will assure that everyone comes into the custom training your consultant does with the same base level of knowledge. And what's more exciting is that you can track people's progress in Trailhead and make sure that everyone has earned the same badges.
3. Know the true drivers of your timeline. Almost everyone who hires a consultant wants the project done immediately. What is the real reason for your urgency? Do you have an event coming up? Is there a board meeting? The more honest and open you can be with your consultant and of course the more flexible you can be in your date, the better off you will be. The more urgent and desperate you are the more likely you are to pay a pretty penny for expedited services.
4. Be willing to do work yourself. Not only is learning Salesforce an excellent investment for the long run at your organization, you can save thousands by doing some of the data clean up yourself or other tasks that can be extremely expensive if only consultants do them. Ask your Consultants directly what tasks you can take on to lower the total project cost.
5. Dedicate the internal resources. Almost every client I work with has vastly underestimated how much internal capacity a CRM project can take. There's a wide variety of knowledge that only nonprofit staff have and are actually better positioned than the consultant to do - for example, working with the executive team, mapping out certain processes, clarifying internal timelines, and creating the exact field mapping from the legacy system.
There are many more ways to save money working with consultants. One great way to start is to just ask. That said, working with Salesforce is an investment and if you truly have no budget you may want to reconsider your decision until you learn more. How can you learn more? Glad you asked. The Nonprofit CRM Summit has a free session for you on nonprofit system administrators as leaders which you can get right here.
“The Nonprofit Success Pack is like a swiss army knife of social change goodness.” - Missy Longshore, Principal, Longshore Consulting
Have you heard that the NPSP is now the Nonprofit Success Pack? That’s right, the NPSP is stronger than ever as a versatile tool to serve nonprofits and foundations around the world with their CRM, fundraising, volunteer management, analytics, and other data needs!
Whether you’re already on Salesforce’s NPSP or are just getting started, Longshore Consulting recommends these 7 tips to succeed with the NPSP:
1. Trailhead will be EVERYWHERE at Dreamforce. Seriously. There will be new trails and quests, opportunities to win swag like a Trailblazer hoodie sweatshirt and Astro dolls of various sizes, and if you've never logged in to Trailhead you'll be farther away from cuddling up to the Cloudy of your dreams. Plus, after this blog post, Trailhead is the best way to prep for Dreamforce (of course!).
2. Every session will be linked to a Trailhead module. This is true. Log in to sessions you plan to attend and you'll soon see a link to the relevant Trailhead trail. Be prepared by earning badges now so you can stay up to date with fast paced sessions!
3. If you're not using Lightning, you'll be confused at Dreamforce. While not every HOT (Hands on Training) will be taught in Lightning, *definitely* be sure to check the description for sessions that are "in Lightning" so you can be prepared. And if TrailheaDX is any indication, all presentations and demos from the main stage and keynotes will be in Lightning. Use Trailhead to get you caught up to speed and comfortable with Lightning if you haven't made the switch over from Classic yet.
4. Avoid on site overwhelm. There's so much that will be happening at Dreamforce, Trailhead is a great way to get mentally caught up before you arrive so you'll have room in your brain to take in the news about all of the exciting new things that are coming up in the Salesforce universe. After all, Salesforce consistently ranks as one of Forbes' most innovative companies in the world. With the announcement of Salesforce Einstein and Salesforce's many recent acquisitions, you never know what Marc Benioff and the team are up to next! Some Trailhead badge suggestions are: http://bit.ly/trailheadbydf16 - then see how you stack up and get to work earning those badges!
Couldn't get in to Dreamforce (yup, it's sold out)? Looking to learn more in a relaxed hands on nonprofit training environment with less than 10 people? Join Longshore Consulting for pre-Dreamforce *in your instance* live, in person training in the Bay Area on October 3, 2016. Here's all you need to know!
Missy (@missylongshore on Twitter and Periscope) writes this blog just for you!