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How to increase Salesforce user adoption?

“My organization spent thousands of dollars and I am the only one using the system, what should I do?” We are often asked to work with organizations on boosting their user adoption and enhancing their Salesforce functionality (read about the Youth Villages case study here. From my experience, the number one reason for CRM implementation failure is because nobody uses it.

So how can you get the development department on Salesforce? How do you encourage your recruitment department to share information with admissions? How can you get them to realize the huge potential of this great tool and its value to the organization’s mission? …Motivate them!

Money is not the only way to motivate people; you can offer many types of incentives such as recognition, points, and even actual rewards. Make Salesforce something people are excited about and not the boring mandatory task that the management requires…


  • Measure your CRM usage – The AppExchnage has many great customizable (FREE) dashboards and reports to measure who’s doing what, how often, and if it is successful. Check out the adoption dashboards and the Chatter usage dashboards.


  • “If it is not in Salesforce, it doesn’t exist”– Tie the compensation and incentives into the everyday job. If the donation was not entered into the database, how can you know that you received it? How will you know that the donor was recognized? Salesforce adoption should be part of your team’s job description.



  • Encourage sharing – We often recommend a monthly or bi-monthly internal “user group” to discuss the organization’s Salesforce usage, learn about new applications, and complain. People love to complain, let them do it, but make sure that it is productive. Make these meetings fun!



  • Share it yourself – start a monthly newsletter tradition with tips and tricks for your users and success stories. This is a great opportunity to highlight the top users.



  • Don’t create a wall of shame – A wall of shame is a place to highlight those who don’t use Salesforce. I don’t believe that this type of peer pressure will really make create long term effects on usage. Instead, meet with those users and try to understand why they are not using it. Ask them questions about their challenges and expectations. You will probably find out that they just don’t see the value in the system. Listen to them and make the necessary adjustments. Additionally, you can create a “mentoring program” where you can assign Saleforce “power users” to help less motivated users.


Don’t wait until it is too late; contact us today to create and implement a user adoption strategy for your organization.