How Salesforce automation minimizes human error7 min read
Fixing mistakes by members of your team can be time-consuming and costly. Could Salesforce automation methods help alleviate these problems? Let’s find out.
1 – Salesforce automation saves time for your reps which they can then spend selling.
2 – Errors made when entering data into Salesforce can mean you lose track of your business.
3 – Misplaced digits or decimal points can lead to issues with forecasting and reporting.
4 – Reps can make mistakes when entering data into Salesforce because they are under pressure and time is valuable.
5 – The value of accuracy in Salesforce is high, but reps have other pressures to deal with.
6 – Process Builder and Workflow Rules are two methods of setting up automation in the Salesforce CRM.
7 – Setting up automations such as updating related fields significantly reduces duplication of data entry.
8 – Automate setting up of tasks and alerts to ensure you stay on top of your business.
9 – Reps can spend the time automation saves them ensuring their remaining data entry tasks are more accurate.
10 – Automation boosts confidence in your data.
When we talk about the benefits of Salesforce automation, we usually focus on time-saving benefits. This is the right thing to do. Automation in Salesforce helps reps spend more time serving customers, instead of performing menial data entry tasks. This helps drive revenue, which is obviously the primary function of a sales team.
However, there is another significant benefit that comes when you incorporate Salesforce automation into your process. It’s one we don’t talk about very often. Salesforce automation helps you reduce instances of human error that can cost your organisation time and money. Sales teams thrive on accuracy, so anything that can boost precision levels is desirable. By minimising human error, Salesforce automation helps your sales process run more smoothly, with less stress and confusion.
In this article, we are going to look at why mistakes happen and the problems they can cause for your business. Then, we will see how Salesforce automation can provide solutions to these problems.
What sort of mistakes happen when using Salesforce?
The kind of mistakes that usually happen when using Salesforce may sound relatively minor, but they can often have serious consequences:
- Misspelt contact names or email addresses
- Misplaced figures in amounts
- Neglecting to update all applicable fields when details change for more than one contact
There are also mistakes that can happen when administrating your sales process through Salesforce, such as not setting up an alert to remind a rep to contact a client.
Why do mistakes happen?
Sure, no one is perfect. Mistakes happen. In high-performance sales teams, reps are under significant amounts of pressure to achieve. They may have to hit KPIs regarding:
- Number of calls made per day
- Number of demos booked
- Amount of revenue generated
Sales reps know that hitting these targets is the most important aspect of their role. It’s only right that they devote the majority of their time and effort towards them.
On top of the pressure to hit targets, there is the day-to-day pressure of life in a sales team. Reps have to prepare for meetings. They have to deal with incoming calls and emails. They may have direct reports to look after.
With all this going on, it’s understandable that entering data into Salesforce isn’t considered a top priority task. Yes, everyone knows the benefits of having Salesforce fully updated.
- Having all the facts about a customer at your fingertips
- Knowing where you are against target at all times
- The ability to share information across departments and sites within your organisation
However, when it comes down to it, reps will try to update their Salesforce as quickly as possible. This is where errors happen. More haste, less speed.
What are the consequences of mistakes?
Even minor errors when entering data into Salesforce can cause significant problems in the worst case scenario.
A misplaced letter in a contact’s email address could result in none of your emails reaching their intended destination. It’s a problem that is easily fixable once you have discovered it, but how many important messages may go astray before you realise something is wrong?
The same is true if a client company changes its details, but you neglect to update every record of it in Salesforce.
If reps fail to set alerts for contacting clients in Salesforce, it’s possible they could forget about them altogether. When you’re dealing with the pressures of converting a large number of clients, as well as day-to-day incoming enquiries, it’s easy for business to slip through the net. A simple follow-up call could be what turns a prospect into a customer, but if you forget to make that call, you miss out on revenue.
Perhaps the most serious problems associated with human error in Salesforce involves mis-entering figures. Even a decimal point in the wrong place can have serious consequences. It could affect:
- Reporting revenue (or potential revenue) figures to the rest of your organisation
- Forecasting figures for future periods
- Other functions of your organisation (e.g. billing, credit control, budgeting)
Hopefully, mistakes like these can be spotted and fixed before the consequences become too serious. However, there is always the potential for disaster when you rely on human beings to input essential data when they are under pressure.
Anything you can do to minimise the amount of human input into data entry is desirable. Enter Salesforce automation.
What is Salesforce automation?
Salesforce knows the value of taking humans away from data entry tasks, which is why they created two ways to automate specific data entry actions. These methods are Process Builder and Salesforce Workflow. You can read more FunnelFox articles on these automation methods, including a head-to-head evaluation.
The principle of both of these methods is to automatically complete simple tasks in Salesforce. However, they perform different functions and work in slightly different ways.
With Process Builder, you can program automations to complete the following tasks:
- Create new records
- Create new tasks
- Set up email alerts
- Post messages to chatter
- Submit for approval
- Update all related records
- Launch quick actions
- Interact with Flow and Apex
With Process Builder, you can set up chains of automation, so one automation can trigger another. It’s also easy for your Salesforce admins to set up, using a user-friendly flow-chart visual interface.
Process Builder is Salesforce newest method of creating automation within the CRM. It replaced Workflow Rules which is still usable but is no longer updated. With Workflow you can automate these tasks:
- Update fields
- Send outgoing emails
- Create tasks
- Communicate with other systems via outbound messages
You need Salesforce admins to set up Workflow rules. It’s less intuitive than Process Builder, but still should be simple for experienced Salesforce professionals.
Reducing human error
Once set up, whatever Salesforce automation system you use should see your reps not having to do so much data entry. This will reduce opportunities for them to make errors.
The fact that you can set up automations to update related fields when one field is updated is massively effective. It removes multiple duplications of data entry. It means that a rep only has to get it right the first time, then the rest of it is taken care of.
The ability to automate setting up tasks and alerts means business is far less likely to slip through the net. For example, you could set up an automation that lets reps know if they have not called a prospect in 3 months.
Regarding inputting figures, the onus is still on the rep to be accurate. However, as long as they take care of it the first time, everything will run smoothly. Because their overall data entry workload has been reduced, they can take more care over the tasks they still have to complete.
Finally, automation ensures that the data in your Salesforce CRM is consistent. There are less likely to be missing fields, missing pieces of information because your reps don’t have the time to update.
Confidence in your data
It’s important to emphasise that no automation system is 100% reliable when it comes to eliminating errors. There will still be some data entry tasks that a human still has to do. Humans entering data into Salesforce still have to take care and try to be as accurate as they can, even while dealing with the everyday pressures of sales.
However, the methods of automation in Salesforce give you a good base on which to build. They allow sales teams and their organisations to be more confident in the data they use to run their businesses.
Salesforce automation is not only essential for giving valuable time back to your sales reps so they can serve customers, it’s also critical for boosting accuracy. If you are not using automation in your Salesforce, talk to your admins about it as soon as possible. Experiment and see if it works for you.
Automation is there to help you. Don’t pass up the opportunity.