Updated April 21, 2022
Implementing Salesforce demands active commitment and technical expertise to achieve the desired goals. Between 18% and 69% of CRM implementation projects fail due to project management issues and unrealistic expectations. That is why organizations rely on the expertise of a Salesforce partner to maximize return on investment.
Salesforce has a partner program that allows you to improve and grow successful businesses while providing customer success. This program includes four classifications:
- Consulting partners (System Integrators) & Agencies: Provide strategic business consulting, system design, solution integration, and product implementation. They contribute to business growth and increase efficiency by applying their experiences, leading personalized practices, and taking advantage of innovative tools.
- AppExchange partners: Independent Software Vendors (ISV) who develop and market software solutions built on or integrated with the Salesforce Platform.
- Resellers Partners: Partners who sell Salesforce licenses but are not necessarily involved in their implementation (currently only available in EMEA, APAC and LATAM).
- Managed Services Provider (MSP): Program designed for companies that provide ongoing, recurring and post implementation services, such as administration. Only Consulting Partners can opt for this program.
Are you interested in how a Salesforce consulting partner can help? If so, you are in the right place. In this article we will answer the following questions:
- What is a Salesforce consulting partner?
- How to become a Salesforce consulting partner?
- What are the levels that Salesforce consulting partners can achieve?
- Are there additional tools and resources for a Salesforce consulting partner?
- What does it mean to be admitted as a Salesforce consulting partner?
- How do you know if you need a Salesforce consulting partner?
- Why hire a Salesforce consulting partner?
What is a Salesforce consulting partner?
A Salesforce consulting partner is a company authorized by Salesforce to develop and provide custom solutions, as well as project implementations and integrations. These companies are trained to lead the innovation phase and help companies connect with their customers in new ways.
These organizations market their Salesforce expertise to customers who need help with software migration, implementation, systems integration, and custom application development. They demonstrate this expertise by keeping their Salesforce certifications current and by displaying portfolios of successful projects. In this way, they help you improve and grow your business while enriching your experience.
Need Salesforce Consulting Services?
We offer Salesforce consulting services aimed to kickstart your company’s growth, either by implementing a new business-tailored solution or improving an existing implementation.
How to become a Salesforce consulting partner?
To become part of the Salesforce family of consulting partners, applicants undergo a very demanding selection process. They must meet the necessary requirements and provide the requested information in order to be accepted. This requires a significant effort in terms of investment, training, certifications, etc.
Accepting the policies established by the agreement of the Salesforce partner program is the first step of many to access your community (Salesforce partner community).
Among the requirements that endorse Salesforce consulting partners are:
- Certifications: To register into the program, a partner requires a minimum of two certifications. This can be one person with 2 or more credentials or two people with at least one credential each.
- Payment Fees: Beginning in fiscal year 2023, annual fees will no longer be due. In the future, there will be a one-time enrollment fee of $100 for new consulting and MSP partners.
What is a Salesforce Consultant?
If you already bought and use Salesforce in your organization, what benefits are there to hiring a consultant?
What are the levels that Salesforce consulting partners can achieve?
Salesforce has 4 levels (Base, Ridge, Crest, Summit) to classify consulting partners. Each quarter, based on Salesforce’s fiscal year, partners are evaluated and may be reassigned to a different level based on their Trailblazer consulting partner score.
Trailblazer score measures a partner’s contribution against the goals set by Salesforce in four main categories: customer success, innovation, growth and impact (formerly called lead). This score can reach a maximum of 1000. You can see here all the elements of the program, the maximum number of points per attribute, and the requirements needed to obtain full points in each category.
Assessments take place during the first month after the end of a Salesforce fiscal quarter, with any resulting reassignments effective the first day of the following month.
Salesforce notifies each partner of their new level either on or before the effective date of the level. Those who do not meet the requirements can be removed from the program and the partner community without any refund of fees. Members who are promoted to a higher level during a fiscal year maintain the highest level obtained during the remainder of that year and the following year, after which they will be reassessed accordingly.
Are there additional tools and resources for a Salesforce consulting partner?
Salesforce provides consulting partners with resources, training, and tools which enable them to develop expertise in specific business functions, product areas, and industries so that they can better serve their customers and hone their practices.
Here are some of the benefits offered by the consulting partner program according to each category:
- Design and develop.
- Access to forums to connect with partners around the world and share experiences.
- Marketing Cloud trial organizations to build and test the capabilities of this tool.
- Consulting Partner Insights Newsletter.
- Lightning CRM (Sales & Service Cloud) Enterprise Edition Licenses and myTrailhead.
- Pardot Plus Edition.
- Sell and market.
- Partners may be eligible to receive a referral benefit when a recommended lead is submitted through the partner community.
- Access to the AppExchange Marketing Program (AMP).
- Service and support.
- Unlimited technical support thanks to Partner Premier Success.
- Credentials vouchers to cover the cost of certification exams related to official Salesforce credentials listed on Trailhead.
These benefits may also vary depending on the level of the member. If you want to know more details, here you can find more information.
What does it mean to be admitted as a Salesforce Consulting Partner?
This means that the organization reflects excellent work and demonstrates a strong commitment to its clients. When Salesforce joins forces with a consulting partner, they can achieve goals that cannot be completed alone. Of course, entering a partnership such as this means that you are not in control of everything. Therefore, this not a decision that should be taken lightly. Doing things the right way requires a lot of work and commitment.
Remember that consulting partners can help select a system, configure it, select applications, create new tools, and plan how everything will work together. By doing this, your consulting partner takes care of the details so that you can focus on the development and growth of your business.
How do you know if you need a Salesforce consulting partner?
If you have difficulties with the structuring and migration of your database, implementation, introduction of updates, integration by systems, departments and custom application development, a Salesforce consulting partner is the solution to your problems. They are highly trained to lead the innovation phase and help companies connect with their customers in new ways.
Why Hire a Salesforce Consulting Partner?
Customization capacity to suit you
All organizations are not the same, they differ in turnover, workers number, objectives, territorial distribution, etc. Here the customization capacity of a consulting partner plays a fundamental role. The extensive knowledge they have in the use of the platform allows them to tailor a suit for each organization.
Salesforce provides consulting partners with resources, training, and tools, enabling them to develop experiences in specific business functions, product areas, and industries so they can better serve their customers and hone their practices.
They have the experience you need
Salesforce consulting partners demonstrate their expertise by keeping their certifications renewed and by displaying portfolios of successful projects. Staying up-to-date is part of the day-to-day life of a consulting partner, which shows their interest and commitment to each of their clients. This allows them to help you improve and grow your business, while enriching your experience.
Save time and money
Organizations often decide to go through the implementation process on their own, and when they find themselves at a dead end, they turn to a Salesforce consulting partner. By then, they have already invested time and resources of all kinds, which will be wasted because the proposed objective was not achieved.
A wise decision is to hire the services of a consulting partner to carry out the Salesforce implementation from the beginning, as well as the corresponding updates with each release. They will be able to help you with integrations by systems, departments and third-party applications. Whether you hire the service part-time or full-time, it will save you significant time and money.
Partnering with a Salesforce consultant will help you meet deadlines for completing tasks while minimizing setbacks. You can dedicate yourself to other high-impact activities while delegating responsibilities to your consulting partner.
Customer focus business
You won’t be the only one to benefit from hiring a Salesforce consulting partner, your clients will see the benefits too. You will be able to offer them personalized services, meet their needs and demands. In this way you will improve relationships with them and this will directly impact the performance of your business. You will have a comprehensive view of your client which will allow you to design better business strategies.
They will improve your business decisions
Making the right decisions is more complex than it seems. Sometimes we do not have the necessary information to do so. A Salesforce consulting partner can help you enrich the information you need to make your decisions right. You will work together with your management team to meet the proposed objectives.
Increase return on investment
With the support of a Salesforce consulting partner, your business will get better and better. This means that, with their help, your goals will be met as planned, increasing the efficiency and profitability of your business. You will obtain greater productivity from your workers, saving time in unnecessary activities, good implementation practices and a wide range of opportunities that will make your business more efficient.
Effective implementation project (before, during and after)
When a Salesforce consulting partner accesses an organization, they carry out a situational diagnosis to identify the issues that affect or may affect the implementation process. This constitutes an advantage because, knowing the problems, they can be addressed immediately to project solutions that have a positive impact on the organization.
If you rely on an expert to carry out the Salesforce implementation, everything will be easier. This means that you will have by your side a partner who masters the characteristics and potential of the platform, the necessary changes to be made according to the type of organization, the new functionalities, etc. There is no point in using Salesforce in your business if you are not going to exploit it to the fullest.
At SkyPlanner, we have more than 80 certifications in Salesforce. We offer Salesforce consulting services designed to drive growth for your business, either by implementing a new custom solution or enhancing an existing implementation. If you need help, do not hesitate to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our team will guide you towards the results you want.