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Tip of the Week – Use monitoring to troubleshoot Workflows in Salesforce

Tip of the Week – Use monitoring to troubleshoot Workflows in Salesforce

Frustration at its finest

If you’ve been using Salesforce for a while now, you probably have built dozens of Workflow rules to streamline your processes and help your team accomplish more every day thanks to powerful and easy to build automations. Occasionally, you’ve probably come across that pesky rule that just won’t work the way you intended, and you may have been able to problem solve thanks to the video we shared with you a couple years ago. But if you’ve got time-based workflow rules, sometimes you need another tool in your arsenal to resolve issues, and I’d like to point you to one you may not know about.

Because time-based workflow rules don’t act immediately, they can be difficult to troubleshoot. You’d normally have to wait until the scheduled time before you see them acting as intended. Well, Salesforce offers a tool out of the box to help you monitor when time-based workflows have been triggered and are scheduled. This will let you see important information, assisting you in confirming everything is in order. All you have to do is go to Setup -> Monitor -> Time-Based Workflow, or type Time-Based Workflow into the Quickfind. Click Search to see all pending actions, or add filters to drill down to exactly what you’re looking for. For more information, check out Salesforce’s help doc, and good luck with your latest automations!

-Jared and the Salesforce Guys

App of the Week – Manage your projects in Salesforce with Milestones PM+

App of the Week – Manage your projects in Salesforce with Milestones PM+

Milestones PM+

If you’re a Salesforce administrator or developer, you probably have a pretty full plate trying to keep up with requirements for your team. There’s a lot to do, and it can be hard to keep track of all the moving pieces. It’s even more complicated if you have larger projects with multiple resources and a budget to keep in mind. You’ve probably thought about investing in one of the powerful project management tools out there, but that can get costly. Well, you’re already investing in Salesforce, so you might as well leverage it for your project management needs with the free Milestones PM+!

Tracks Programs, Projects, Milestones, Tasks, and Project Calendar. Also Tracks Time & Expenses & other logged items. Key Benefits [include]: Free & Customizable Salesforce Project Management, Solution, Create Projects From Templates, Easily Upgraded, Extensible Via Our Add-Ons, Fantastic Support.

Milestones PM+ is a fantastic, free tool, and I recommend you check it out! And if you need something more customizable, consider checking out the Unmanaged Milestones PM by Salesforce Labs as well!

Tip of the Week – Dreamforce Tips #5 – Use the Salesforce Import Wizard

Tip of the Week – Dreamforce Tips #5 – Use the Salesforce Import Wizard

You have hundreds, no, thousands of records you need to get into Salesforce in a snap. The Data Loader and dataloader.io are too intimidating, or maybe there are some limitations keeping you from using those tools (maybe you have a lot of integrations and no free API calls). Maybe you just want a clean, easy experience for importing your records. Well, if you abandoned the Salesforce Import Wizard years ago, you may be pleasantly surprised by the new(ish) interface. The Salesforce team let me know this was one of the most neglected tools on the platform, and in this week’s Dreamforce Tip, I’d like to point you in that direction.

Using the native Data Import Wizard is extremely easy and offers some useful features. To get there, go to Setup -> Data Management -> Data Import Wizard, or My Settings -> Import -> Data Import Wizard. Click Launch Wizard, select which object you’ll be importing into from the list of available Standard and Custom Objects, and identify if you’ll be importing, updating, or doing both at the same time (“upsert”). From there, choose your file, map your fields, and click Import. The system can automatically identify duplicates, import Accounts and Contacts simultaneously, and is pretty smart at auto-matching field mappings. For more info and to help you choose the right tool, check out the help doc and this handy video from Salesforce!

-Jared and the Salesforce Guys

Dreamforce Sock Update:

Dreamforce Socks

These Dreamforce socks are starting to look like socks! Two heels, and the striping has begun! My goal is to finish these before Veterans’ Day, so wish me luck!

Tip of the Week – Know where you’re going and where you’ve been with Analytic Snapshots in Salesforce

If you caught the season 5 premier of Game of Thrones, you saw the incredible flashback that kicked off the episode (no spoilers or leaks here, so no worries). This epic scene gave viewers an insight into the background of one of the least understood characters and gave us a glimpse into why they are the way they are. Flashbacks are a fantastic narrative device that allow us to better understand the present by looking back into the past, and they’re not just for books and TV shows. A report showing historic data can be a window into the world of what makes your company tick, who keeps the pieces moving, and how you can improve your processes to increase revenue. Salesforce has a feature called Analytic Snapshots that opens this window with just a few clicks.

There are a few simple steps involved in generating an Analytic Snapshot in Salesforce. First decide on what historical data is important to you – maybe you want to know what Cases were open, who owned them, and their status and age, or maybe you need information on the stage of Opportunities, the Accounts, and amount. Create a new Report (your “Source Report”) with those fields and make a list of the fields you included – you’ll need this in a moment. Keep in mind there is a limit of 2,000 records in an Analytic Snapshot run, so choose your filters wisely. Next, create a custom object (the “Target Object”) with a clear name, make sure Reporting is allowed, and create a field for each column in your Report. Go to Setup -> Data Management -> Reporting Snapshots, choose your Source Report and Target Object and save. Map the columns to the fields and schedule your snapshot to run. Once you’ve done this, you can kick back, relax, and watch the video below to get some ideas of the awesome Reports and Dashboards you can create after the first run!

-Jared and the Salesforce Guys

Help your reps go paperless with Quick Create

Maintaining data quality is crucial in any Salesforce organization. Junk data makes reporting more complicated, reduces the accuracy of business metrics, and requires significant time to both identify and fix.

In an attempt to avoid these problems, administrators frequently increase the number of required fields and active validation rules. No doubt these features play an extremely important role in data maintenance, but when a user is in a hurry to quickly put new information in the system, they create their own headache.

Reps trying to quickly add new leads may input fake data (with the intention of going back and fixing it later) in order to pass all the tests letting them save each record, or else they might just let their pile of paper notes on new leads grow beside their monitor until their supervisor forces them to chop it down, or until they start hearing their colleagues calling their leads and they can’t figure out why they weren’t already in the system.

Enabling Salesforce’s Quick Create functionality allows data to be added without any headaches for the sales reps, but you cannot customize what fields appear there, and any record added there is able to completely ignore all validation rules you have established. Most administrators I have spoken to disabled this feature long ago.

So how do you maintain the integrity of your data while also giving your team the ability to quickly enter new records? I’ve recently implemented a solution that may help solve both problems: give your reps a Quick Create record type!

To get started, go to Setup -> Customize -> Leads -> Page Layouts -> New. Remove any fields that are not absolutely crucial or required by the system, arrange them so that your users can quickly tab from field to field, and set the page-level security to required for anything you’re not willing to go without. Add Record Type to the page layout and save.

Next, go to Record Types -> New, and call it Quick Create. Be sure to tick the checkbox marked Active and assign it to any profiles you want to have access, and click Next. Now you will assign one lead layout to all profiles. Choose the new layout you created and click Save.

Finally, under Setup -> Manage Users -> Users, log in as a few different users and try out your new record type to ensure there aren’t any validation rules needing modification. Once you’ve verified that everything is working correctly, let your reps know they can now begin using the new feature.

Going forward, you can easily eliminate these records from reports and lists by filtering out records with the Quick Create type. You can create lists and reports to only show these records as well, and if a user is ready to reach out to a Quick Create Lead, all they have to do to gain access to all the necessary fields is click [Change] next to the Record Type field on the detail page.

My users and administrators love Quick Create, and I think yours will too! Give it a try and see if it works for your company today. And don’t forget to let us know how it works for you!