Achieving an ROI on Salesforce.com?
It all comes down to implementation
Like many applications, salesforce.com has the capability to be customised to meet the individual needs of your organisation. Salesforce.com has the capability to go a long way beyond basic customisation. It can become an extremely powerful tool for productivity across many departments.
The key is to implement with the right partner. The biggest mistake many organisations make is to implement a solution to a problem that has not been properly defined. The right partner doesn’t rely on a ‘cookie-cutter’ approach. They work with you to identify and define the business problem. Then the business outcome required. Then set about delivering the appropriate configured solution.
Alongside the implementation, staff adoption is a significant change management process as part of the implementation. The right partner will ensure that all the parts of the business that use the platform are appropriately included in the design phase through to being well onboarded.
Buyers remorse occurs when the implementation fails to meet the needs of the organisation and its people. When licensing costs come under scrutiny it is a loud and clear indicator that the organisation has not achieved its desired business outcomes.
Transparency creates accountability
Supply Clusters provides transparent reporting on Salesforce.com Consulting spend through our member portal. Simply take up an offer and your data will be available 24/7. Members have access to all of their data including detail on all the work done. Join today, start saving on Salesforce.com Consulting and see all the detail you need to manage your ROI.
Things to look out for when selecting a Salesforce.com implementation partner
Ongoing Support Costs
Some partners offer lower initial project fees on the basis of locking in low-cost, high-fee ongoing support to your business. This type of arrangement can lead to a poor implementation process and fixes that are charged at higher ongoing fees.
Offshore resources at onshore prices
Offshore resources are meant to provide a cheaper outcome for business right? It doesn’t make sense to be paying a partner full local rack rate for offshore resources. A simple question is all it takes to evaluate the resources of the partner.
Cookie Cutter implementations
Cookie cutter approaches are great when you want all the outcomes to be the same. Businesses and their segments often differ. As do the teams within them. If you see two potential partners who look the same and provide exactly the same offering – chances are that they will take the same approach with their work. This happens often across technology and marketing service providers. This type of approach may sting the back pocket as well as leave your company with a generally unworkable product.
Poorly defined scope of work
A poorly defined scope of work is the dream of service providers during an RFP. You need to select a partner up front and work with them to define a scope of works or project scope. They right partner will be able to assist you with defining a better approach to achieve the solution that you are looking for.
Many companies have worked with a partner only to find themselves being held to ransom either via time or money when the initial project is over. Make sure that ongoing support and service levels are built into any initial contract and that all work delivered is guaranteed for at least a 12 month period. You might even want to lock in rates for future platform upgrades for known releases.
Ownership of IP
If a company does work for your business, make sure that someone inside your business holds the master key for all code and platforms. After all, it is your Intellectual Property (IP). This is an oversight that gets businesses in trouble, time and time again. This can be one of the areas of contention for many service providers so get this discussion as part of any upfront brief.
Use of industry standard code practices
One other very important consideration when choosing a partner is future compatibility should an alternative supplier need to do some work on your configuration in the future. While most service providers have their own range of short cuts and code hacks – it is important that you specify the use of industry standard code practices. This will ensure that if you change partners in the future, another one will be able to come along and pick up the pieces simply and easily.
Better Buying Outcome
Choosing a partner for implementation is possibly the most important decision you will make when implementing salesforce.com. Without a good implementation partner, you may be setting yourself up for failure. This is not a decision to make on pure cost criteria but you should be on the lookout for a supplier who delivers:
- Flexibility around ongoing support. Implementation is never finished until the system is ingrained in everyday use. A partner who specialises in the onboarding support will deliver a far greater outcome for a business.
- Avoid cookie-cutter approaches unless you are sure of what you require. Because every business is different, businesses that apply a cookie cutter approach to deployment and implementation often deliver substandard results. You should be wary of any partner with a standardised response to tender or quote.
Supply Clusters Offer
Supply Clusters partner with Trausteknik who provide a comprehensive development and support service to organisations who use salesforce.com and its ecosystem.
Members receive the following benefits from Trausteknik:
- 7.5% discount on hourly rates for Supply Clusters members
- Access to all of your expense data with Trausteknik through the Supply Clusters member portal
- Rebates for premium members