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The role of CRM applications in sales organizations has grown in significance in the past decade, as innovations in technology have enabled powerful capabilities. Once considered fairly one-dimensional repositories of customer information, applications like Salesforce have become critical to enhancing sales performance and facilitating business success. Today, CRM can make or break a sales organization’s success.

Salesforce is often the go-to solution for sales organizations looking for a ready-made CRM implementation, free from the added expense and effort involved in system customization. This is great for Salesforce, but may not be especially beneficial to customer organizations in the long run. An out-of-the-box (OOTB) Salesforce implementation may not meet the unique requirements of an organization that is changing, growing, expanding operations, or navigating changing market trends. OOTB implementations are good for getting up and running quickly, but to really put Salesforce to work for you and get the most bang for your buck, customizing your implementation is the right approach.

Customizations of Salesforce can range from simple configuration of fields or functions to full-scale customization of Salesforce with integrations, re-engineered business processes, and apps across the business and tailored for each department. When Salesforce is customized to meet your business-specific requirements, the organization is better-equipped to tackle its unique and pressing sales challenges and ensure no opportunity slips through the cracks.

  1. If You Don’t Use It, Lose It

Your business requirements should dictate how Salesforce works, not the other way around. With OOTB implementations, users often find themselves boxed into certain functionality, adapting their processes to those that Salesforce provides. These same users will also often find they are forced to slog around standard, built-in functions they may never need.

To optimize workflow, Salesforce should be customized to present users only with the essential tools and information they are actually using. Then, organizations can add their own business-specific actions, calculations, and other functions. These simple customizations can significantly improve usability, system quality, and overall organizational efficiency.

  1. Great Questions Make Great Reports

Dashboards and reports are critical for organizations to gain insight into sales activity, forecasts, opportunities, deals, customer disposition, and so on. The problem many organizations run into with OOTB implementations is that reports aren’t providing the insight they need, or that performing work-arounds to create one-off custom reports is difficult and time-consuming.

Reports are essential to sales organizations for decision-making, planning, and establishing sales strategies, often in real time. Users should not be burdened with work-arounds or manual searches to compile the specific information they need. Building a library of customized reports that users can generate with a few simple clicks ensures that organizations can easily get the information they need with speed and accuracy.

Businesses implement Salesforce to have broad and easy access to information. But in today’s business environments, a standalone Salesforce implementation rarely provides a complete picture. On top of that, the various business functions that interact with Salesforce each have their own critical processes that may live in other third-party applications.

Third-party integration enables multiple applications to communicate and share data, with Salesforce and with each other. Each business function or department in the organization is able to view and process information from Salesforce as it relates to them, in formats they can use and understand, to gain more meaningful context.

Organizations that have been frustrated with their OOTB Salesforce implementation and are ready to take on Salesforce customization may be initially overwhelmed. Navigating the thousands of functions and customization options possible in Salesforce to figure out what works best for your organization may seem too gargantuan a task, easily tabled for a rainy day.

By working with a trusted IT partner like Prime, you don’t have to put it off. Prime’s Salesforce consultation services will help you to design and implement the configurations and customizations that are right for your business. With expertise in Salesforce customizations, Prime will guide you every step of the way through the implementation process.  For more information on how to engage with Prime, Click here.

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