Once you decide that Salesforce is the right Customer Relationship Management (CRM) for your business, it’s time to hire a consulting partner. Choosing the right and certified Salesforce consulting partner is crucial for your enterprise.
These partners can provide expert help for both non-technical and technical CRM processes. They will take care of your project’s every aspect — from initial design to enforcement. Moreover, these consultants will empower you and commit to a smooth deployment within the desired timeframe.
Statistics reveal that in 2020 about 250,000 Salesforce channel partners worldwide generated $17.1 billion in revenue. The Salesforce partners ecosystem will show continuing trends in the years to come.
But if you are hiring a Salesforce partner for the first time, things can get quite overwhelming. Nowadays, many agencies identify themselves as certified Salesforce partners. But not everyone is a right fit for your business needs.
So, how do you determine which partner to hire for your business? Here are the five things you must contemplate before hiring Salesforce partners.
1. Domain Expertise
You can hire Salesforce consultant partners to manage business processes and enhance productivity. Their skills and experience can navigate challenging situations and ensure adequate CRM execution.
When evaluating expertise, you should examine their work portfolio and proofs-of-concept (POCs). If you have more of a niche project, it will help if they have worked on similar projects. Demos are another way of assessing a consultant’s expertise. Upon request, they should create a real-life demo product using different Salesforce modules.
Pro-tip: Can your preferred partner integrate Salesforce solutions into your technology roadmap? If not, you may need to reconsider and choose a different partner.
2. Your Budget
The second factor you need to consider before hiring a Salesforce partner is budget. Not all companies will bill you the same consulting fees. So, you should filter out the firms outside your budget range and focus on the ones within.
The cost of Salesforce partners depends on various factors, such as experience and reputation. The more experience the consultant is in a specialized field, the more they’re likely to charge.
The location also plays a key factor. If you’re offshoring to a developing country, then you can expect to pay less. For in-shore consulting, the prices will be in the higher range. When setting a budget, you should also consider other factors like current data traffic, level of automation you need, software integrations, and more.
Pro-tip: There are five Salesforce partner tiers: Registered, Silver, Gold, Platinum, Global Strategic Partner, and Specialized partners. Your budget will also depend on the type of Salesforce partner you choose.
3. Implementation Approach
How the partners developing real-world apps is another consideration you must make. That’s when requesting demos becomes crucial. While most Salesforce partners follow the recommended best practices, they vary in their enforcement approach.
Some partners follow the blueprint provided by you or discussed at the meetings. But others take an agile-based incremental approach where they deliver the apps in phases and iterations. If the partner uses the latter tactic, your project delivery is on time and within a budget.
Pro-tip: Some organizations go even a step further. They leverage Salesforce consultants to identify product development opportunities. So, if that’s one of your goals, hire keeping that in mind.
4. Support and Response Time
What happens after the initial implementation of your CRM project is complete? Will your Salesforce partner provide 24/7 support help for all aspects of your CRM processes? Or are they going to focus on other tasks over yours?
Hence, before hiring a partner, you should inquire how they will support and add value to your business moving forward. Updates, bug fixation, and compliance are other facets of a Salesforce project. So, the partner must have a plan to deal with these.
Pro-tip: You should ask some questions. For example, “when an issue arises, how soon can they look into the matter and provide a solution?”
5. It’s About the People
When working with a consultancy firm or a third-party vendor, executives tend to focus less on the “People” aspect. So, when hiring a Salesforce partner, you should look beyond expertise and credentials. You should consider soft skills like communication, negotiation, presentation, and problem-solving proficiencies.
The partner should understand the project at hand and share the same vision as the clients. If the partners push back at an idea, then it’s a sign that they’re committed to the project as you are.
Pro-tip: Always check what their previous clients have to say about them. Ask for recommendations and referrals.
The Salesforce platform is growing and evolving day by day. You must hire partners who are a trusted vendor and can keep up with the evolution.
You can hire trusted Salesforce partners by considering the above points.
- The consulting company should have all the necessary certifications as per your business needs.
- Keep searching for other prospects if the consultant’s experience doesn’t match your needs.
- Ask for a free trial as nowadays many consultants offer that.
Ensure that they can meet your business needs and deliver desirable results.