Friday, October 31, 2014

Gamify Your Salesforce Implementations

Gamification has crept into the business world where companies seek to engage and reward their employees, customers and partners.  For the Salesforce administrator, gamification can also be a valuable tool.
Give users a way to power up!

For your next implementation, whether an implementation of a new application in an old org or an implementation of a brand new org, consider how gamifying the process can make things easier for users.

Any new business tool can seem overwhelming at first.  If there are too many options, users might have a difficult time mastering even basic skills initially.  This leads to user frustration and discourages them from using tools available to them.  But what if tools offered only the solution users needed at the point that they needed a new solution?

With gamification, individuals are rewarded for executing specific tasks that indicate their level of engagement.  In the world of video games, this means that players begin with easier tasks and limited resources and then build resources and skills to meet their next level of challenges in the game.  You don't start the game by battling Bowser in his castle with the racoon suit in Mario World, after all.

Salesforce users can benefit from the same approach.  If you limit users by giving them access to the most basic set of features initially, you can build their confidence with using Salesforce and build their interest.  When users gain access to new features, they can take the time to figure out how best to incorporate them into what they already know how to do.  And users will be happier if they can have new features after they begin to recognize a need for the feature in their day-to-day work.

To make the process work for you, the administrator, employ permission sets or create graduating levels of user profiles to add access to new features when you are ready for users to level-up.  It gives you the chance to roll out new training materials and focus support efforts in a staggered fashion as well.

With the gamify approach, as an administrator, you can focus on training users for specific skills over time.  You can train users in basic skills and provide support while building a base of power users for those basic skills.  When users are ready to move on to learning and implementing a new set of features and skills, you can spend your time training and supporting them while relying on your power users to continue to help anyone who is still struggling with earlier skills and features.

This process requires an administrator to know how features fit together and to
have an understanding of how users will implement Salesforce features.  If you build out your permission sets and profiles ahead of time, you can respond to any users who want to power through all the 'levels' at once and you might even be able to get their help writing up a 'game' guide for others.

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