When I discuss Salesforce with others, I'm often confronted with an argument that Salesforce is far too expensive and can be substituted with much cheaper alternatives.
My quick answer is “yes, Salesforce is expensive, but the value for money depends more on your decisions than on Salesforce price."
5 ways how you can control the benefit-cost ratio:
1. Salesforce is much more than a CRM system (the best of the kind). It’s also a process automation system, self-service solutions, case handling, mobile solution, omni channel, knowledge system, and much much more. A lot of the features are included in the standard product. If you are not interested in using these features it will lower your benefit-cost ratio.
Be open to all possibilities. Even if you can find a cheaper alternative to a particular feature, take integration cost into your calculation as well as the benefit value of having every single customer data in one solution.
Don't forget to check out: Salesforce in 2020 – Top 4 Trends to Watch Out For
2. Besides, being a CRM system, Salesforce is a platform that can manage a lot of tasks that your technical staff is doing today. Typically, this will cause a lot of disagreements from your technical stuff as they have certain competencies and opinions about certain technologies and solutions. If Salesforce is just an add-on in your infrastructure and is only used as an extension to other technologies it will decrease your benefit-cost ratio.
Stay strong and keep your focus on your business demand and value to the customers. Take all technology discussions up-front. Take a look at a bigger picture instead of small fragments. Make a roadmap for your implementation and include phasing out of other technologies.
3. Salesforce offers a wide range of best practices within particular processes in every business. It will dramatically increase your benefit-cost ratio if you find out how Salesforce works before you design your own solution from a clean sheet.
Let your business analysts take trailheads and read best practice guides BEFORE they start designing your processes.
4. Three times a year Salesforce comes with huge upgrades where you get a lot of new functionalities. If you compare Salesforce with home-built solutions, remember that they will typically lead to massive maintenance projects when they get "outdated".
Make sure to read and understand all release notes. Tell your business folks about new possibilities. Make an adjustment plan if the new release has "outdated" your home-built solutions.
Check out an amazing video by Tom here: See how fast and easy you can make intuitive Salesforce solutions to your users with Cauzali.
5. It’s often said that a good developer is 10 times more effective than a bad developer. This is even more true for Salesforce developers. Most of Salesforce development is declarative which is dramatically more effective than a good developer's coding.
Beware of too many software developers who like to code. Allow coding only in case when the declarative approach is not possible. This will increase your benefit-cost ratio significantly.
These were 5 ways to get the most out of your Salesforce investment. Many more tips will come in my next article that elaborates on the reasons why Salesforce projects often get really big.