Today I found and read a blog post that was posted as a new discussion topic in a popular salesforce LinkedIn group. This post perfectly illustrates why choosing your salesforce partner carefully is so important. First, let’s remember that salesforce is primarily a sales CRM tool – yes it is many other things, but the most common use of it still is as a Sales CRM…Ok, onto the example…
Here is an excerpt from the first paragraph:
“In this post I’d like to discuss the topic of prospecting from a different perspective, and share with you a new partner relationship I’ve formed with…Consulting….is a….firm that specializes in Salesforce.com consulting.”
The writer states that he wants to talk about a specific sales methodology (we learn that it is actually pipeline and funnel metrics), as well as his new relationship with a Salesforce.com consulting firm. This consulting firm he has partnered with has this image on its home page:
Ok. Sounds great, right?
However, after the writer goes through his explanation of “Prospecting and Funnel Metrics”, he then says this…
“Why is this important to…and his clients? While the concept of Funnel Metrics is not complex, …realized that neither he nor his client managers have a working knowledge of pipeline and funnel metrics practices inherent in the pipeline tool we reviewed.”
Ok, so problems # 1-100…The Salesforce.com consultants you just partnered with don’t “…have a working knowledge of pipeline and funnel metric practices…”!
Unfortunately this is not an uncommon thing to find – whether they will openly admit it or not. In the three years I have been consulting full-time, I can’t tell you how many times I have been asked to come into a company where they already had a “certified” consultant with some fancy website and high prices who came flashing their certifications and client logos and then basically gave the client a system that doesn’t work. Why is this? Because too many consultants are button pushers/technologist and not business people. They don’t have the needed experience or knowledge of business processes or practices or even basic sales operations.
Remember that we are not just implementing a software tool. We are implementing a business tool – and that requires business knowledge.
Before you hire a consultant to work on your Salesforce implementation, make sure they are a good fit for your business, not just your IT team. Certifications are great, but they should never be why you buy – after all, there are a lot of certified people. Buy from those who can use those certifications to benefit your business with business acumen.
Here is how I see it… Don’t buy for features, certifications, or logos. Buy for your business.