Salesforce Classic to Lightning is just a click away

October 25, 2017
Salesforce

Salesforce Classic was-is phenomenal. For several years now, the platform has powered customer success at several enterprises by enabling sales, service, and support experiences, both for customers and employees.

Nevertheless, Lightning has somehow managed to upstage its predecessor. The switch to Lightning has increased productivity for users by nearly 41%, according to the latest Lightning Adoption Survey. Sounds, unreal? Not if we look at how Lightning is actually helping those on the frontline.

Take, for instance, the fact that, sales reps at T-Mobile could reduce the number of clicks needed to create a pricing quote from 104 to 81. That’s massive and it stands testimony to the fact that Lightning does, in fact, help you close deals faster.

Lightning Experience or Lightning Platform?

While Salesforce Lightning offers plenty of reasons to migrate, the transition itself isn’t easy, which means users are looking for ‘shortcuts’. They do a partial migration with Lightning experience and defer a complete shift to the new platform for later.

Does it work? It does. But, only so much.

Clearly, the biggest challenge enterprises face is the confusion over migrating just to Lightning Experience or to a complete Lightning platform. By styling VisualForce(VF) pages with Lightning design system, the application renders Lightning experience, but the underlying architecture is not migrated to a Lightning platform. While this gives you a UI-UX akin to Lightning, most of the platform benefits are not realized.

Is a full migration needed?

By migrating to a Lightning platform, new core features are enabled. For instance, Lightning component framework and App builder let you build lightweight responsive applications in record time. Lightning data services feature can be used to access and share data across Lightning components. Some other features available only to platform users are Locker services – a Lightning security service, Lightning bolt – predefined portal templates and AppExchange listed Lightning components and 3rd-party applications.

Clearly, a complete shift to the Lightning platform can make a world of difference to your sales, support and service operations. But, this change may not be simple or easy. You’ll face a few challenges.

Lightning Migration Challenges

While Salesforce offers Lightning Readiness reports to guide the migration, a detailed study of the current configuration and customization would still be needed to ensure customizations are not lost in transition. For this, existing customizations need to be mapped against the Lightning framework and the ones that require re-work to convert the application to Lightning have to be identified.

Given these limitations, moving to Lightning typically takes one of two paths: converting existing VisualForce (VF) pages, components, and other objects with Lightning Design System (LDS) or re-creating new Lightning components and VF pages from scratch. Of course, neither is an appealing option and Salesforce admins are eagerly searching for a faster way to migrate and benefit from the entire Lightning platform while protecting their investment in customizing Classic.

So, what can ensure a smooth and seamless transition to Lightning? The right plan, tools coupled with the following best practices will do the trick.

Lightning Migration Best Practices

Salesforce to Lightning

1. BUILD A MIGRATION PLAN

Estimate your system’s readiness accurately. Some elements of your migration strategy will be determined by the version of Salesforce you are presently using. For instance, if you are on Enterprise edition or above, you can set role permissions and enable Lightning only for specific users. Doing so will create a group of test users who can test drive the new platform before everyone else dives in.

Before or after the readiness evaluation, you need to clearly set out the desired business outcomes and timelines expected from the transition. Set a realistic timeline that doesn’t disrupt operations or burden anyone.

In the process, re-evaluate all the customizations; rarely used features that are not contributing to the overall productivity of your users could be phased out.

2. DEVELOP AN IMPACT MAP

Luckily, Lightning allows a phased roll-out. To start with pick user profiles that are likely to benefit the most and have the lowest risk of adverse impacts. Once you have them identified, communicate the possible impacts to these test users clearly.

Next, you must prepare and share your migration plan across all your Salesforce users. To keep everyone informed and to enable collaboration, set up a chatter group. Here, users can share updates, experiences, blogs, and training resources on migration.

Now that you have a phased transition plan and all your Salesforce users are familiar with it, it’s time to test the waters. Doing a blind study with only select users will help identify UI roadblocks or technical challenges that migration might pose. All of this helps users adapt to the change better and ensures support for Lightning adoption doesn’t wane.

3. PARTNER WITH A MIGRATION EXPERT

Partnering with a migration expert can mitigate migration risks and help you chart out an ROI-based migration plan. List out consulting partners with demonstrated expertise in migration to mitigate risks.

For example, one of the biggest challenges faced in migrating to Lightning is the confusion over what will happen to the custom pages, buttons, links, and objects. PopcornApps addressed this problem by launching a unique solution that automates the Lightning conversion process – Flash.

Lightning Migration Easier

Flash automates conversion from Classic to Lightning platform thereby protecting existing VF pages, custom code, and features. With Flash, you can migrate custom elements like custom pages, buttons, and links to Lightning quickly and cost-effectively.

“The transition to Lightning may be complex. But it doesn’t have to be slow, costly, or disruptive.”

Choosing the right strategy, partner and tool will make it easy. To illustrate how big a difference the right choices can make, let’s assume you decide to use Flash in your migration. The move could fetch huge dividends, as Flash-enabled migration promises to be 60% cheaper and 70% faster than a manual conversion. To learn how Flash can enable a seamless Lightning migration, send your readiness report to flash@popcornapps.com for a free consultation.

If you are still unsure of how to execute Lightning migration, feel free to contact us at info@popcornapps.com We can assist you with any queries on your Lightning migration path including analysis, assessment, planning, and deployment.

See Flash in action

Girish Avantsa
Girish Avantsa
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The ART of the POSSIBLE with Salesforce Part-II

February 21, 2017
Salesforce

Re-inventing the art of Customer Service

My first experience with a call center operation was way back in 1999, working alongside with a supervisor trying to make sense of all the metrics that measure the performance of the call center.  Monitoring the LED displays of the calls in the queue, call routing, measuring average wait time, longest wait time, average handle time are some of the metrics that stuck with me for a long time. As I worked through the week, i gained a more  detailed understanding behind the numbers and what ‘drove’ the call center. Back in the day, customer service was mostly driven by inbound calls, 60% for new orders and the rest for support on exisiting services. The only ‘self-service’  available for callers is the IVR tree, which did nothing more than routing the calls to the right queue.

Fast forward to today, a call center deals with a lot more complexity while handling customer service issues. The complexity stems from few overwhelming trends that have shaped the expectations of the customers and thereby making customer satisfaction (CSAT) a challenging metric to keep up!

Calls have become interactions: Customers demand new channels and expect to be heard/served over these channels – It is imperative that a business engages on Facebook and Twitter amongst the many available and effectively use them as important customer access channels

CRM data is no longer ‘Internal’: Customers tweet, post and interact with a business outside of the traditional channels of web, voice and chat. The responsibility to collect and correlate this publicly available data to enrich CRM information rests solely with the business.

Omnichannel is expected: Customers want seamless experience across devices and channels. They may switch between their mobile app, web, social channel or talk to an agent and expect to pick up where they left off.

So how do you handle customer service in this new age where the expectation of service is “Always available”?

We used Salesforce.com Service Cloud as a foundation and integrated it to various systems to handle requests for billing, order management, provisioning, service issue etc. The key principle for this implementation was to provide ease of access to the customer, while providing the customer care agent all the required information to service the customer. The agents have full view of the customer – through internal CRM system, correlated external activity on social media channels, backend systems and any interactions conducted in self-service mode by the customer.

The system supports 3 different types of customer access channels:

1.    Some folks always want to speak to someone We obviously allowed for traditional voice – With CTI, voice calls are intelligently routed and the agents have a 360-degree view of the customer; thereby arming them with all the available information to provide effective customer service

2.    Some want to tweet – We integrated with Sprinklr, a social media tool and correlated information on Facebook and twitter to augment customer profile and thereby adequately address issues raised through these channels

3.    Some want self-service – Allow customers to engage through any channel of their choice – web, chat, email, mobile app etc. thereby providing a true omnichannel experience

The supervisors and the agents are still the most vital part of a good call center; their jobs however, have become more demanding. The statistics I saw on the LED board in 1999 still hold relevance but the measurement of those stats has become more complex. As a part of the project, the team created the Live Console. This serves as a dashboard for agents and supervisors giving them a real-time view of their workload. For agents, this dashboard give a view of Calls, Chats, Social media interactions, Open Cases, Customer Surveys whereas for supervisors it gives a similar real time view of their pod / group

The Predictive intelligence and smart tech enabled service.

As a move towards providing excellent customer service, we have augmented the above support channels with smart tech – using Bots and AI, we have enabled a ‘proactive’ service channel whereby certain customer service functions are available to customers over channels like Facebook messenger, Skype, website bots. Not only can these bots be invoked in a pull mode with the customer requesting information but they also provide proactive, timely and relevant support information to customers.

Fascinating how the tide has changed with times – I remember businesses forcing their customers towards complex IVR applications and now it is the customers who are forcing the business to adopt channels they feel comfortable with. Today, businesses are adopting and reinventing the ‘Art of Customer Service’ – just the way it has to be.

Girish Avantsa
Girish Avantsa
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The ART of the POSSIBLE with Salesforce Part-I

January 12, 2017
Salesforce

A core business function modernized using Salesforce at a Fortune 50 client

“Salesforce.com has come of age” No matter what statistic you look at, this statement remains true. The 1st Dreamforce event in 2003 brought together 1300 users and partners – this number was about 175,000 in 2016. There are almost 2 billion transactions conducted daily on the platform and the ecosystem boasts over 1.6 million developers.

As a Systems Integrator focusing on Salesforce.com implementations, we have a different perspective by which we judge Salesforce’s coming of age. We view it through a lens where the KPIs are: complexity of functionality, ease of integration, configuration flexibility, and customization tools available. Back in 2005/6, Salesforce.com started acquiring big name customers. We remember working on early implementations at GE and Coca Cola. In our view, these customers gave Salesforce.com a level of credibility and respect that made others in the Fortune-500 realm sit up and take notice of a company that was largely viewed as a provider of sales management software to SMBs.

Fast forward to today, Salesforce is ubiquitous and has almost become ‘fashionable’ in the industry. Dreamforce takes over the city of San Francisco for almost an entire week, and there are companies highlighting their solutions and products on one of the fastest growing enterprise software marketplace – AppExchange!

Many Salesforce.com customers however, are using the CRM product suite in a limited capacity. Some of this is due to the heavy legacy baggage these organizations carry and a lift and shift approach seems too ambitious; others however, are not fully bought into the level of complexity a Salesfore.com deployment can manage.

These others may benefit from a session highlighting the “Art of the Possible with Salesforce”. Sure, there is a lot of information available during Dreamforce and several events all through the year but sometimes what it takes to covert a skeptic is to show them a real deployment that is similar in scale and complexity to their business.

To highlight what is possible, let me tell you a little bit about a Salesforce.com project that we just went live with for one of our clients – a Fortune 50 tech giant!

We took a core business function – ‘Warranty Management’ and all that it encompasses – sub processes like Eligibility check, entitlements, RMA, fraud check, inventory management, dispatch, and depot/warehouse management and modernized it using Salesforce.com technology. Through the course of this project, we simplified the integration to various back end systems, retired several applications and optimized about a dozen business processes.

The entire function was modernized in a ‘lift and shift’ approach to move from SAP to Salesforce.com and a myriad of other applications, which were seamlessly integrated. The well-coordinated ‘go live’ was global across 11 call centers and handles 100,000 + transactions a month supporting over 30,000 warranty claims for consumer and business customers.

 

The call center agents went from a swivel chair process spanning 3 different applications to an integrated ‘one view’ of the customer and the associated warranty claim(s), thereby increasing productivity and accuracy of data by 20%.

Of course, customers also have 24X7 access to submit a claim on-line. The on-line process validates the claim request through product serial number check and any eligible claim has a case created and assigned to the appropriate agent pool and depot for managing the RMA process.

Such a project would have taken 16 – 18 months to implement with legacy or premise based applications – we took this from inception to deployment in 8 months!

Fancy replacing an aging CRM/ERP? Or, just want to know a bit more about ‘Art of the Possible with Salesforce’?

Girish Avantsa
Girish Avantsa
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