Top 5 Things That Excite Me The Most About Salesforce Lightning Experience

Introduction 
Salesforce introduced a complete redesign of the Sales Cloud portion of it’s legendary CRM.  There are so many cool new features to explore!   For a Salesforce nerd like me, I’m excited – and overwhelmed – with all of the possibilities. To help you see what all of the buzz is about, I’ve outlined the top 5 things that excite me the most.

Lead Workspace 
In the classic Salesforce User Interface, a lead record was pretty basic – a place to store a name, commpany information, and activity records until it was time to convert and get to the good stuff.   Now, lead records look more like opportunities, with their own clearly outlined path that is front and center visually, that shows users how to get the lead from curious to interested and ready for a sales cycle.  It makes activity tracking a priority by giving it the most space on the page, and provides a timeline of past, current, and planned activities related to that lead.  Even quick notes are available at a glance, so that you can skim them before you make the next call or send the next email.

New Home Layout
This one will be an adoption game-changer.   One of the greatest obstacles to CRM adoption is overcoming the sense that it’s just a management tool that creates extra work for a rep in the field.   I’ve long advocated for a Sales Rep Dashboard in the organizations I’ve worked with, that is a one-stop-shop for reps to find actionable information they need to plan their days.   With Lightning Experience, Salesforce has taken that concept and made it the first thing a user sees when they log in.   There’s a performance chart that shows real-time attainment to goal figures, an activity assistant that displays tasks that are due and reminders about next steps on open leads and opportunities, and an Account Insights section that automatically feeds relevant news from the web about top accounts.   This useful information will drive adoption from the reps and provide a natural incentive for keeping information up to date.

Opportunity Workspace and Board
When I saw the first Lightning Experience demo, I actually hooted and hollered a few times at the screen.  There is some seriously useful stuff added to Opportunities, and it’s also seriously fun!   Like Leads, the Opportunity page has been completely redesigned to make action the most important thing. It also has a visual representation of the sales stages, and it defines the steps to move the opportunity forward without clicking through to a separate page.   One of the things that’s coolest about the new layout is how it inherently hides the details that are important but not always immediately needed, and makes the stuff you regularly interact with – the main details and activities – the biggest thing you see.
With the brand new Opportunity Board, gone are the days of reviewing a boring report on a regular basis, and manually updating the opportunities one by one.   The Opportunity Board shows all of your current pipeline as cards on a single page layout grouped by sales stage.   Need to advance a few opportunties?  Simply drag and drop the card from one column to the next to advance the stage automatically and recalculate amounts instantly.  There are also handy icons on the cards that show when an opp needs attention or action.

New Dashboard Editor
Let’s face it – Salesforce dashboards in their current state are informative, but outdated and clunky.  Like a kitchen that was remodeled a decade ago, it gets the job done but no one would call it top of the line.    That all changes with the new Salesforce Dashboards.   Components can be moved around and resized like elegant puzzle pieces to make the key information more prominent.   Aesthetic touches like a new color palate and font makes the look and feel current, and more intuitive.  All of this equals out to a dashboard that is more engaging and relevant than ever.

Graphs and Charts on List Views 
I’m the curious sort, so I used ad-hoc reports a lot to answer my own arbitrary queries about what’s going on in Salesforce.   If I needed a quick analysis, I’d add a chart to the report just to get a better visualization of the data that I was working on.   This resulted in a multitude of little reports I’d saved in my personal reports folder, just so that I could get the same at-a-glance view the next time I needed it.   Salesforce had made the same graphs and charts that are used in reports and dashboards available in object list views now.  You can easily choose a list, filter it, and see an instant visualization of your data.  It can be customized with a simple click and viewed however it’s most useful to you.

Conclusion
These are just a few of the great new features rolling out with Lightning Experience in October 2015 with the Winter ’16 Salesforce release.  If you want to know more, click here to check out the Lightning Experience demo videos.

Want to know if Lightning Experience is right for you?   Fathom can help!  Call or email our team and we’ll work through the decision and set up with you.

Tara Hall

About Tara Hall

Tara Hall is a Certified Salesforce Administrator who came to Fathom in July 2015 as a Salesforce Technical Consultant. She has 8 years of experience with Salesforce - four of them as a Sales Operations user and the rest as an administrator, analyst, and Salesforce app builder. In her current role, she is responsible for working with clients to optimize their use of Salesforce.com to support sales and marketing alignment.In her free time, Tara enjoys singing, tabletop card games, and spending time with her son Noah and companion Jesse.

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