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Stop Trying To Engage All Your Employees

By | Blog

Stop Trying to Engage All Your Employees

Introduction

If the title of this article sounds like heresy, it’s because it is. If you’re like most companies, you focus a lot on why people leave your company, hunt for clues to indicate flight risks, and create programs to boost engagement. If only the results of such efforts were as good as the intentions.

Here’s the reality: Organizations are pouring a ton of time, money, and energy into employee engagement solutions to reduce turnover (especially in today’s tight talent market), lower absenteeism, bolster well-being, and improve productivity. At the same time, talent leaders are turning to employee engagement to elevate the employee experience, shape workplace culture, and strengthen the overall employee value proposition. No wonder employee engagement as an HR technology category has ballooned to over $74 billion, according to The Starr Conspiracy.

What’s the Problem with That?

The problem is, employee engagement continues to hover stubbornly around 30 percent, according to Gallup. Could it be that employers are pumping too much effort into engaging the wrong people?

It’s time for a new approach: Rather than expend resources engaging employees who may leave, you’ll be better off concentrating your efforts on those who want to stay. That’s because already-engaged people are the backbone of productivity at your organization. In fact, highly engaged employees are 38 percent more likely to have above-average productivity, according to the Workplace Research Foundation. It’s therefore important to figure out who these people are, get better data around what engages them, and then scale your efforts in meaningful ways.

A Tight Talent Market

With unemployment at less than 4 percent, the risk of losing top talent is about 400 percent. OK, that’s an exaggeration. However, perhaps such hyperbole is necessary to jolt organizations that may not have fully woken from dreams that high performers won’t leave them. Increasingly, a tight labor market is bad news for employers struggling to retain and recruit the right people with the right skills.

Gallup data reveals that 63 percent of employees think they could easily find another job just like the one they currently hold. That doesn’t mean that these individuals are disengaged. Indeed, a good number of them are likely very engaged employees. Still, while 37 percent of engaged employees are looking for jobs or new opportunities, according to Gallup, higher numbers of employees who are not engaged or actively disengaged are doing the same (56 and 73 percent, respectively).

Talent Market

Whom Do You Want to Keep?

Now ask yourself this: Which type of person do you want to keep — a disengaged employee considering walking out, or an engaged individual who’s likely producing and performing at higher levels?

Your answer to this question should likewise dictate which employee you want to make a greater effort to engage — especially since an actively disengaged worker can cost you 34 percent of that person’s salary. (For example, a disengaged worker who earns $60,000 can cost you $20,400 a year.) That’s also roughly what it costs to replace an employee. According to Employee Benefit News, you can expect to spend about 33 percent of someone’s pay to replace that person.

Additionally, organizations with engaged employees outperform other companies by as much as 202 percent, according to Dale Carnegie Training. Consequently, it’s important to strive for a culture that nurtures retention of engaged employees to effectively tackle ever-changing business challenges.

The Right Data to Engage and Keep the Right People

By leveraging the right HR technology, you can measure not only engagement but commitment, turnover, absenteeism, productivity, and a range of other KPIs. Furthermore, it’s vital to use a mix of long-form and pulse surveys, gather feedback through other talent management solutions, and capture information from one-on-one conversations. Then triangulate your findings with other people data to identify your most engaged employees and inform actions to engage them even more.

The more you can learn about this critical employee population, the easier it will be for you to retain, recruit, reward, and recognize people in ways that will foster a culture of engagement. Ultimately, by leveraging data to engage the right people, you will be far better positioned to help your organization achieve its business goals.

About the Author

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Naveen Miglani, January 21, 2018

Naveen Miglani is the Co-Founder and CEO of SplashBI. Over the past 25 years, Naveen has established himself as a respected leader and global influencer in the HR technology, BI, and data reporting markets. Prior to joining SplashBI, Naveen held many senior positions such as CEO of Apex IT, EAI Leader at GE Energy, and Managing Principal at Oracle Corporation.

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How to Rock Employee Engagement

By | Blog

How to Rock Employee Engagement

Introduction

Employee engagement needs a new approach: Stop expending so much energy trying to convince disengaged employees to stay. Start focusing on engaged employees — the workhorses and reliable people who drive a business.

It goes against the current of employee engagement to abandon disengaged employees. The HR technology category for employee engagement is estimated to be in excess of $74 billion because companies are trying everything they can to keep employees, reduce employee turnover, and drive productivity. Pulse surveys. Rewards and recognition. Casual learning and skills building. Real-time coaching and feedback. Yet Gallup data comes back year after year showing employee engagement stuck at about 30 percent. We just can’t seem to make everyone happy.

So stop trying to make everyone happy.

Let me put it this way: Disengaged employees have already checked out. They are not the co-workers engaged employees want in the trenches with them day-in and day-out. Engaged workers are the people that other engaged workers and business leaders want on the bus. They are committed, enjoy the work, and want to see the organization thrive — if only management would get rid of the deadbeats. Except, most companies focus on why people might leave a company, monitor flight risks, develop programs, and deploy technology to bolster engagement. The results aren’t matching the intent.

Sure enough, you too might be investing in programs or turning to technology providers to reduce turnover (a high priority in a competitive jobs market that favors candidates). Or you’re trying to show employees you care about them by providing well-being programs and solutions, training and learning opportunities, or development for managers to be better bosses. All great things that will probably improve morale or reduce absenteeism. Ultimately, productivity may even rise. You might even be focusing on the employee experience or creating a stronger workplace culture to attract great talent and elevate your employer brand.

All of the above is driving the employee engagement technology category, attracting the attention of investors who see silver bullets everywhere to the employee engagement conundrum. And yet.

Seems Like Employee Engagement Has It Right

We believe that if we do more to create a better employee experience and support employees in their well-being, career paths, and give them better managerial support, then they’ll be more engaged. Why is it then that employee engagement remains stuck?

Here’s one hypothesis: We should stop focusing on disengaged employees and start looking to engaged employees. Find them, understand them, and hire and keep more people like them. They are committed. They want the organization to succeed. They want to be surrounded by more “all-in” co-workers. And they probably want to stop carrying all the burden of productivity. Heck, they might even be more engaged when they notice that you’ve noticed they are the most important resource the company has.

It’s time to rethink employee engagement. As business and HR leaders, we need to stop putting resources into the people who have already checked out and invest in people who want to stay in their job. It’s a tough thing to say that you’re willing to let people go. But if you’re honest, those disengaged employees are probably not worth the effort and you’d be better off hiring more people like your most engaged employees.

According to a study by Workplace Research Foundation, highly engaged employees are 38 percent more likely to be more productive. We need to do more to find these engaged employees, gather more data around why they are more engaged, and find a way to replicate at scale that engagement. The trick is actually finding them and gathering sufficient data around what makes them tick.

You Don’t Have to Lose the War for Talent

Unemployment is hovering at 4 percent, which has HR leaders everywhere speculating that 70 percent of their workforce is ready to leave at any minute (if you reverse engineer the Gallup data cited earlier). Turnover certainly isn’t that high, but the risk of losing people is real enough that we’re doing all we can to minimize departures (especially when it costs about 33 percent of someone’s salary to replace that person, according to Employee Benefit News). Recruiting and retaining people with the right skills for business needs is paramount to survival and competitive advantage.

Another study by Gallup found that 63 percent of employees think they could easily get as good a job as they already have. Now, people leave jobs for a variety of reasons, but the fact that people are willing to walk out implies that they are not fully committed to an organization.

Employee Engagement 1

You might provide great pay, great benefits, great programs, and great training that recognize great work or that can advance a person’s career. Yet if you’re doing all that and people still are disengaged, it might not be you.

At which point it’s worth asking: What’s the cost of keeping workers who aren’t committed in terms of productivity and customer dissatisfaction? Perhaps the fight for talent is hurting your bottom line.

Whom Do You Want on the Bus?

Forget tracking disengaged employees. Track engaged employees. The reality is that better workforce analytics — made possible by enterprise technology that captures HR data — can help us find and evaluate engaged employees. It used to be the norm that collecting and analyzing data required a small army of data scientists. However, the digital age and omnipresent technology can help business and HR leaders measure and evaluate engagement, turnover rates, absenteeism rates, where productive employees exist across an organization, and countless other KPIs that matter to organizational success. We now have myriad tools at our disposal, such as long-form surveys, pulse surveys, manager and coaching tools, and workforce data.

Leveraging technology can help us identify and evaluate our engaged employees. We can use those insights to support those people and hire others with their characteristics. The more we focus on engaged employees, the better we’ll become at feeding our talent pipeline and fostering a culture that collectively is more committed to the mission and better business outcomes.

Kiran is the Co-Founder, President and Chief Architect of SplashBI. With over 20 years of industry experience, Kiran has been instrumental in the design, management, and implementation of SplashBI core technologies and business practices. Kiran currently oversees the development, global delivery, and support departments of the company.

We Need Better Data on Engaged Employees

Disengaged employees take up a lot of energy and likely bring down morale among other employees (not just because negativity can be infectious but because it’s hard for engaged employees to carry the load of being positive or doing all the work). Engaged employees are high-performers, future leaders, and want the organization to succeed. In fact, engaged employees are all-in and put in discretionary effort because they are committed.

That’s why the answer seems pretty clear: We should invest in our engaged employees — especially considering a disengaged employee can cost about 34 percent of a person’s salary in lost productivity. That’s about the same cost to replace someone. The math, then, is just as clear. Disengaged employees aren’t worth the cost of keeping them, let alone investing in trying to convince them to be more committed.

Now consider data about engaged employees: Companies with engaged employees outperform competitors by as much as 202 percent, according to Dale Carnegie Training. It only makes sense to focus on engaged employees to drive productivity and help organizations take on business challenges.

About the Author

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Kiran Reddy Pasham, January 21, 2018

Kiran is the co-founder, President, and Chief Architect of SplashBI. With over 20 years of industry experience, Kiran has been instrumental in the design, management, and implementation of SplashBI core.

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Using Predictive Analytics to Retain Top Talent

By | Blog

Using Predictive Analytics to Retain Top Talent

The Hiring Process Today

The art of attracting highly skilled talent has changed over the years. With the availability of advanced recruitment software and access to talent pools across the world through social media, large MNCs are no longer relying on recruiting firms or agencies to hire top talent for them. It is easy for companies that have in-house recruiting to capture, record and analyze data of specific candidates with specific skill sets, in turn reducing cost, optimizing recruitment and improving talent quality.

Today’s millennials, who make up the largest segment of the workforce around the globe, expect not just quality pay—but recognition for their achievements, equity, bonuses and sufficient appraisals. According to a recent study, each time a company replaces a salaried employee it costs them 6 to 9 months’ salary on average to find a new fit for the position. Thus hiring the right candidates and retaining them becomes very important.

Social media has become the next big thing for job applicants and hiring agencies to use for hunting talent. Today, over 90% of employers use social media to hire the right candidates and over 55% of hiring professionals use social media to attract highly skilled talent. Even with these tools, many HR professionals still rely on guesswork to assess employee satisfaction, leading to high attrition rates and turnover costs to the organization. Thanks to Artificial Intelligence and Predictive Analytics, HR professionals can now easily access insights hidden within their data.

Why Predictive Analytics

Predictive Analytics is all about finding patterns in the huge amount of data available to us today. It helps in forecasting trends, uncovering patterns, and providing HR professionals with powerful insights and people intelligence. It helps organizations in understanding the pulse of their employees and achieve optimal business results. When organizations combine Predictive Analytics with traditional employee satisfaction surveys, they observe reduced employee churn rate and a happier workforce because they’re able to correct any prevalent issues.

Predictive Analytics help identify personal and professional qualities of a candidate that contribute to the company’s profitability. With the rise of AI and predictive analytics, screening candidates has become faster, cheaper, and more effective than the traditional hiring process.

Let’s look at how predictive analytics is changing the art of recruiting and retaining:

Hiring the Right Talent

Using predictive analytics, one can hire specific candidates with specific skills based on keyword selections. This saves a lot of time for recruiters who must sift through hundreds of resumes. It also aids in developing models which shortlist candidates based on their retention probabilities and skill suitability.

Reduce Churn

Employee churn is a big problem which most businesses grapple with; it reduces business agility and negatively impacts a company’s productivity. Predictive Analytics help organizations in knowing when the employee shows signs of leaving, and places projections to mitigate that effect—particularly in their first year when the organization invests heavily in them for training and development.

Compensation

When an organization has all the information that is required to determine an employee’s performance, it is very easy for them to structure compensation packages. Predictive Analytics help the organization in consider factors like the likelihood of the employee remaining with the company for a reasonable period, skill, domain, education, certifications, experience and other factors instead of relying on traditional KPIs to optimize compensation and bonuses.

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Employee Satisfaction

Predictive Analytics enables companies to predict employee satisfaction and other employee-related problem if any. They provide HR professionals with the ability to tap information through surveys, interviews, customer feedback, performance reviews, and social media data and analyze the data to make better HR decisions.

Employee Satisfaction

AI, Predictive Analytics and other big data tools have changed the way different organizations analyze and harness data. If this predictive technology is used properly, it can streamline the way companies hire talent, improve sourcing efficiency, cut the time taken to hire in half, improve quality of the hire, and predict the success of the candidate in a particular role.

Recruitment today is all about tapping talent through technology. Technology will keep getting better and organizations will need to continue updating themselves and stay digitally savvy.

About the Author

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Sydney Ergle, November 26th, 2018

Sydney Ergle, a graduate from Kennesaw University, is part of SplashBI’s next generation of marketing minds. Sydney oversees SplashBI’s social media, email campaigns, and in her free time likes to hang out with her cat, Tim Beans.

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Have a Passion for the Problem, Not the Product

By | Blog

Have a Passion for the Problem, Not the Product

The key to a successful business? Problems! People are always going to have problems. And your job as a business owner? To solve these problems for your loyal clients. Seems easy enough, right? Sort of.

Your client probably doesn’t care about your solution until you paint a picture of the problem you solve for them. A marketing strategy based on the challenges you help your clients overcome instead of the products and services you offer shifts the focus back to where it should be — the customers.

Customers almost always know what their problems are (unless they haven’t come across them yet) but they don’t know how to solve them. That’s where you come in.

A common issue with this theory is that people are always searching for the newest, best and quickest way to fix their problems and move on to the next task. The rapid pace of today’s business and tech worlds has proven to be a problem in itself for some companies. It’s as simple as: Do your best and work your hardest or else you won’t have a company to run anymore. So that’s up to you.

B2B customers have learned to ignore the flashy promotion of features and benefits and focus on how your product can solve an issue — their issue. CEOs and executives have been retrained to ask, “How is your product going to fix our problem?” “Why do we need it?” “What will happen if we decide to go with your service?”

How to Inject Problem Solving Into Your Marketing

People like when things are simple. Instead of naming various product features, focus on the main reasons why the customer will be better off with what you are providing. Highlight the benefits of your product in the simplest way possible. Every feature included in your product should offer a clear benefit.

Convincing a potential customer that they need a solution is easy. Convincing a potential customer that they need YOUR solution is what poses a challenge.

Place the focus on unique features of your product that will quickly and easily remedy your potential customers’ pain points. Make sure to highlight how the tool that you’re offering is different from other players within the market, but don’t overdo it. Nothing turns people off faster than someone over hyping their product just to make a quick buck.

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So What Now?

  1. Identify common problems that your product solves.
  2. Research. Ask some of your best customers what their most pressing pain points are. Don’t have any “best customers” yet? Conduct research online. Google is your best friend.
  3. Consolidate your findings and craft a list of commonly reported issues that your product can solve.

Companies that have shifted their marketing messages to highlight the problems they solve and the results they deliver are thriving in 2018. Things are changing, and you must stay current with the latest business trends to keep your business afloat.

About the Author

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Sydney Ergle, November 26th, 2018

Sydney Ergle, a graduate from Kennesaw University, is part of SplashBI’s next generation of marketing minds. Sydney oversees SplashBI’s social media, email campaigns, and in her free time likes to hang out with her cat, Tim Beans.

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The Power of Hierarchy in HR

By | Blog

Hierarchies have gotten a bit of a bad reputation. “Hierarchical” is sometimes used to describe an organization with a rigid structure filled with bureaucracy. It sounds old and stodgy. Nowadays, we’re all about teams. However, people still report to managers and organizations need hierarchies. Everybody can’t be accountable to everybody. I think of hierarchies as accountability trees. In a good culture, hierarchies foster and protect people, not corral and pigeonhole them.

Now let’s talk about analytics. Standard business analytics sort things by location, department or general ledger. They analyze the health of a business by looking at lists of things. HR analytics are different in that they analyze people, not widgets or money. Hierarchies are critical to people analytics because they define relationships between people, their managers and their teams. It’s relatively easy to spot individual problems in an organization but it’s difficult to understand why without using a hierarchy.

To discover strengths and weaknesses on an organization’s people, we navigate the hierarchy. It’s an accountability tree and allows for impactful calculations.

Let’s take a look at a fictional company called Datamangle (a data mangling service with 20,000 employees). Turnover is high and it it’s expensive to hire and onboard a new data mangler. The CEO asked Chris in HR to find ways to increase employee retention.

 

Chris jumps into SplashBI and gets to work. Starting at the top of the services hierarchy, Chris looks at turnover for each director. One director, Pat has the lowest turnover by a narrow margin.

Chris then drills into Pat’s organization and sees that one senior manager, Kelly has significantly lower turnover on her team of 60 data smashers and managers. Customer satisfaction is also high for Kelly’s team. Prior to Kelly holding this position, the team’s numbers were similar to the other teams.

Chris drills into Kelly’s team and sees that the managers also have good numbers. The shining star in this story appears to be Kelly.

Hierarchy Org Chart

The data also shows that Kelly’s people log a bit less billable time than her peers’ teams. Chris also discovered that Kelly takes significantly longer to fill open positions. At first glance, this looks bad. Kelly has probably been admonished over this.

A quick phone call to Kelly reveals that she hires very carefully and screens out candidates who aren’t a great cultural fit. Kelly also requires her managers to have 30-minute weekly one-on-ones with their people. It’s probably been difficult for Kelly, but she’s doing lots of things right.

Armed with this data, Chris recommends implementing a similar one-on-one policy for the other services teams. The loss of 30 minutes of billable time is well worth a good employee manager relationship. You’ve probably heard the adage about happy employees resulting in happy customers.

So basically this all boils down to transparency and learning from successful management. The ability to see what is going right in your organization and duplicate it across the board is a necessity in growing a successful business. Now more than ever, with the rise of technology, hierarchical analytics is becoming more important and more tangible.

That’s all this week’s sentiments on the matter, but there will be more on the topic soon. In the meantime check out some of our HR resources to learn more about hierarchy in HR analytics.

About the Author

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Brad Winsor, October 12th, 2018

Brad Winsor, an HR guru with over 20 years of experience, is designing and developing SplashBI’s next generation of HR analytics products as Vice President of Workforce Analytics. Brad previously held the position of Vice President of Workforce Planning and Analytics at PeopleFluent for eight years. During this time, Brad developed an award-winning workforce analytics data discovery tool along with an organizational chart product that is currently a leader in the HR market.

Pt. 2 Data Quality

The Salesforce Admin Series: Data Quality

By | Blog

Introduction

In the previous entry we discussed missing information; how it ails Salesforce Admins and Analysts, but fortunately we found a few answers. This time we tackle data quality, a necessity for top line reports. Data quality for some admins may seems like an ambiguous term, but it’s much simpler than you’d think. Let’s break it down.

There are 2 components that make up quality data:

  • Cleanliness
  • Accuracy

Clean Data

Most of the time salesforce admins and analysts find it easy to clean data. The reason? They can do it themselves. No relying on IT to perform complicated functions or relying on Salespeople to promptly and properly enter their activities (we’ll get to that in accuracy). Clean data is like a clean house. Everything is in the right place, there is no trash lying around, and nothing is duplicated or incomplete (ok, that last one doesn’t really pertain to house cleaning).

Clean data means that the data in the database is all there (not missing), not duplicated, and up to date. When all these standards are met, your data is relevant. By removing all the broken data, you’re allowing only clean data into your reports, thus directly making them more relevant and useful.

Accurate Data

Now when we talk about data accuracy, we’re talking about making sure the data is entered properly and that there are no mistakes. In other words, the values in the database are the correct values. In the particular case of the SFDC admin, accurate data comes from updating information This is something not entirely in control of the SFDC admin and analyst. The possible 3 hotspots where data becomes inaccurate are:

  • Integrations
    When integrating a new app in Salesforce (or any CRM), admins must make sure data is coming in to the right areas. Otherwise you end up with missing or incomplete data.
  • Imports
    Like integrations, you need to make sure lists are plugging in to the right system.
  • Access
    The more people that have access to enter, edit, and record data in your CRM, the higher chance human error can come into play. Mis entered data, duplicate entries, and data in the wrong spot. It happens. We’re all human.

By monitoring areas where data enters the database, you can ensure that your data is accurate.

When your data is accurate you can more effectively and efficiently connect your departments to each other and improve the communication between them. Accurate data eliminates any questions or ambiguity and puts puzzle pieces together that tell the real story of what’s happening across the departments of your organization.

Data Quality

With good data quality Salesforce admins can get data to show the clear, linear, and chronological steps of a deal and truly make effective reports. Effectively cleaning data enables admins, analysts, and management to investigate their organization and gauge which areas are doing well, and which areas could use some refinement.

To learn more about SplashBI and its amazing ability to improve organizations reporting processes, check out our reporting page. Need Salesforce® specific answers? Visit our Salesforce® connector page to answer all your Salesforce admin related questions.

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Part 1 of the Salesforce Admin Series: Missing Data.

In part 1 we help you understand why the problem of missing information exists, and provide potential solutions that suit your reporting needs.

Salesforce Admin Pt. 1 Missing Information
Salesforce Admin Pt. 1 Missing Information

The Salesforce Admin Series: Missing Information

By | Blog

Introduction

There are a few problems that you will undoubtedly run into as a Salesforce admin, analyst, or someone who finds themselves building a report from CRM data. Frustrating as it can be, these issues have no definite solution… but we are here to help you understand why these problems exist and provide the tools to pinpoint a unique solution that suits your reporting needs.

Out of the problems likely to present themselves, the most commonly encountered obstacle is missing information. Often the cause of missing information can be narrowed down to three reasons:

1) Salespeople not entering in information
2) Your marketing team is not providing a field for that information to be collected
3) Your team is not gathering that information at trade shows

Sales Team

To discern the origin of these missing information, we will take a heuristic approach. The first step is the easiest and most accessible method of finding out why your information is missing; just ask your salesmen. It may sound accusatory, but it’s not. Sometimes information is missing sheerly because someone did not enter the data.

The quick solution to this problem is to talk with a salesman or sales manager and ensure that standard operating procedure is being followed and enforced. This guarantees that everyone is getting the information they need to help run a successful organization.

Marketing Team

Incomplete data entry is not always the answer to why your information is missing. The problem may lie in how your organization is gathering data. In today’s digital world, many companies acquire leads through online platforms. Typically, the process of digital lead acquisition conforms to:
1) Have interesting content available for download on your website
2) Put a form fill in front of downloadable content
3) Someone visiting your website sees the content and becomes interested
4) The visitor submits their personal information in the form fill
5) Visitor is now able to and does download the content
6) Visitor becomes lead

The important aspect of this process for Salesforce admins, analysts, and report builders to pay attention to is the form fill. This is the key to gathering the information you need. The information this form fill collects is what goes into your CRM. So, if there is a field (first name, last name, company, etc.) missing on the form fill that new leads fill out, you can be sure that is the reason for your missing information.

Tradeshows

The final reason for missing information is very similar to the previous reason, it just takes place in a different setting. At tradeshows, sales representatives and booth operators alike are focused on one thing: booking demos. So much so that collecting CRM information pertinent to your report building can be forgotten from their list of to dos. Again, speaking with the trade show team is the way to remedy
this issue. Prior to the show, ensure that everyone understands what information must be collected from leads and how everyone eventually benefits from this collection of information.

Solving the issue of missing information boils down to two things: the salesforce admin’s ability to understand how the information collecting process takes place in your organization, and how they communicate with the people who facilitate that process. This post is the first of many relating to issues encountered by Salesforce admins, analysts, and report builders, so stay tuned for more!

To learn more about SplashBI and its amazing ability to improve organizations reporting processes, check out our reporting page. Need Salesforce® specific answers? Visit our Salesforce® connector page to answer all your Salesforce admin related questions.

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The Salesforce Admin Series: Month End Reporting

By | Blog

Introduction

So far in our Salesforce Admin Blog series, we’ve covered everything from how to deal with missing data, to tips and tricks for keeping data clean and accurate, to ways that you can efficiently build the best reports for management. In Part 4, we’ll cover what month-end closing time means for SFDC Admins, how to keep up with your data during the chaos and offer tips on how to make your month-end close a little less chaotic.

What does month-end closing time mean for the Salesforce Admin?

You are the steward of data quality and business processes, so you have to be consistent and somewhat of an “enforcer.” During month-end, organizations find it hard to predict how much revenue is truly being generated due to lack of information in their CRM. Data is an extremely valuable asset⸺proper decision making relies on accurate, timely data. If you don’t have the correct data, how will your sales teams know what to improve on next month? What did they do well this time? And most importantly, how can they close more deals?

As an admin, you are responsible for a multitude of ongoing tasks. Your duties range from guiding users through developing their first report, maintaining data quality, adding fields, creating reports, running backups… the list goes on. The best way to ensure that you are ready for end-of-the-month crunch time? Budget your time!

  • Write a to-do list by hand, keep constant reminders of upcoming due dates in your phone, use the calendar feature on your machine⸺Users depend on the Salesforce infrastructure and quality of data, which means they depend on you to deliver that data.
  • You can separate your to-do lists into four categories: real-time, weekly, monthly, and quarterly. Once you have a feel for the way things work around your organization, you’ll know what’s expected of you during that specific time.

When it comes to your responsibilities, staying organized is the best way to ease month-end pain for everyone.

How to keep up with the mountains of data that are being thrown your way

At the end of the month, admins are expected to have reports ready to send out so everyone can review the month’s activities. You’re going to be pulled in many different directions, so paying close attention to detail is imperative to make sure nothing gets mixed up. Always keep track of who requested what and when they asked for it.

Here are some best practices for keeping up with the data:

  • Evaluate bad data records; instead, decide whether you can repair/restore them to a useful state, or ditch them to free up storage space for more useful and usable data.
  • Don’t remove data from your system until you have to, and even then, keep several generations of backup files.
  • Snapshot the “before” state of data whenever you make a change (it could save you in the future).
  • Understand what the roll-back strategy is before taking an action (some actions can take hours to roll back)
  • Emphasize to team members and sales reps the importance of adding their data in a timely manner(marking activities as completed, etc.)
  • Have validation rules and workflow in place where correct data entry can be ensured
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What does all this effort amount to?

With all your data in order, and all your sales reps making an effort to keep things updated, management can learn from the data and plan for upcoming months. Ultimately it leads to a better-managed sales team, a better-managed company, and higher revenues. Not only this, but it leads to less time reconciling data, which -let’s be honest- as an SFDC admin the less data reconciliation you have to do the happier everyone will be!

To learn more about SplashBI and its amazing ability to improve organizations reporting processes, check out our reporting page. Need Salesforce® specific answers? Visit our Salesforce® connector page to answer all your Salesforce admin related questions.

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Part 1 of the Salesforce Admin Series: Missing Data.

In part 1 we help you understand why the problem of missing information exists, and provide potential solutions that suit your reporting needs.

Salesforce Admin Pt. 1 Missing Information
SFDC Series Pt 3. 2

The Salesforce Admin Series: Building the Report

By | Blog

Introduction

In the previous entry, we discussed what data quality means and how you, as an SFDC admin, can achieve it. In Part 3 of our Salesforce Admin series, we discuss the role of a Salesforce admin on a team and how it affects admin reporting tasks. Executives and sales teams often turn to Salesforce admins when they have questions about the pipeline that only an admin would know the answer to. Often times, this results in a new report being generated.

It may seem like a daunting task to come up with a solution, but we have found the following method to be a solid starting point. It can help you outline the necessary steps you must take to accomplish your goal.

To begin, SFDC admins must ask themselves some basic questions:

  • How do I connect the right systems, processes, and users to the right data?
  • How can I generate an answer from the data that I already have?
  • What is missing, what are the limitations, and how can I overcome them?

1) How do I connect the right systems, processes, and users to the right data?

Management is looking for answers here. How can you give them the information they need?  You need to figure out what data to connect them to. Management needs to see the right data if they are going to get utility out of the reports you provide. Ask yourself: which systems can provide this data? You must connect to the right systems, use the most effective processes, and grant the right permissions to view this sensitive data.

Admins need to understand what those systems are, which processes are relevant to management’s business problem, and what needs to be done from a backend point to give leaders the information they need.

2) How can I generate an answer from the data that I have?

Know your audience.

Keep in mind who is asking for answers here. How do they prefer to learn? Is it through data visualizations, or are they more receptive to reports? If you know their preference, which dashboard would be most effective for the visual learner? Which report format is most preferred by the report receptive manger?

Half of the battle is finding the delivery method that resonates most with your audience. Data is already difficult to interpret so if you’re able to neatly wrap it up in a format you know your management team prefers, everyone’s lives are instantly made easier.

Arrow BOy

3) What is missing, what are the limitations?

After determining which data to connect your users to and how to format it, there are only a few things left to consider. Is anything missing? Am I facing any limitations in providing management with this data?

You may find that the data you need is missing, or the way you are collecting data is not providing clear and actionable answers to management’s questions. The two previous blogs on “Missing Information” and “Data Quality” take a deep dive into these possible issues and provide insight into why you may be facing these limitations in your reporting endeavors.

Identifying your limitations is an important step. Think of this step as you going the extra mile to ensure there are no communication issues in the future. Management will appreciate you taking initiative— and you’ll save yourself a lot of work down the road!

To learn more about SplashBI and its amazing ability to improve organizations reporting processes, check out our reporting page. Need Salesforce® specific answers? Visit our Salesforce® connector page to answer all your Salesforce admin related questions.

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Part 1 of the Salesforce Admin Series: Missing Data.

In part 1 we help you understand why the problem of missing information exists, and provide potential solutions that suit your reporting needs.

Salesforce Admin Pt. 1 Missing Information