Launched in 2014, Salesforce Lightning offers user-centric interfaces, advanced analytics, improved data entry, and built in automation to streamline your workflow and get you focused on where you can make the most impact.
Using the Lightning interface alone has been shown to increase productivity by 25%. In this blog, we outline 5 of the biggest advantages Lightning offers and provides key insights into how to double down on those advantages to maximize the benefit of your Salesforce org.
Here are 5 of the most important improvements available in Lightning
Lightning is built around a revamped reporting system that gives you clear, actionable insights into the way your Salesforce org is performing. Not only are the out-of-the-box dashboard and reporting massively improved over Classic, these reports help you find exactly what you’re looking for with minimal configuration. All of Lightning’s new reporting functionality is built around a human-centered user experience, making it easier to configure, read, and make decisions from reports.
The new reporting interface, shown here, allows you to easily drill down and analyze reports across your entire salesforce org. For more information on the changes to reporting in lightning, click here.
Improved data entry and management
Salesforce prides itself on giving users the ability to easily enter and manage data within the platform. These capabilities are at the core of a good CRM. So how does Lightning enhance what was already one of the strongest value propositions for the platform? Salesforce has improved on key data management functionality – with redundant data management becoming easier than ever with “Potential Duplicates” analyzing and identifying potentially redundant data.
Automated data entry is a key focus, using Einstein’s “data capture” to scrape emails and events from your calendar and automatically associate them with the appropriate records. While Einstein is a paid addition to Salesforce – it’s a reflection of their dedication to make further improvements to the way data is collected and managed.
Dynamic Forms are a key component of Lightning’s improvements to data entry and management. Dynamic forms give you the ability to create user-centric, intuitive page views that display the right information at the right time. Over time, the page layout, or “Details” section in Lightning pages become congested with fields. These fields may be necessary, but not all the time or to all users. To organize these fields and cut down on clutter, you can use visibility rules that allow you to control which forms are displayed and when – so you can effectively manage resource utilization.
The Lightning app builder is a revolutionary tool that lets organizations create codeless applications for virtually every business need. The goal is simple: create apps within Salesforce around your own unique workflows and automate time consuming tasks, all without significant technical knowledge.
Not only does Lightning enable you to build your own apps, you can also tap into Salesforce’s AppExchange. With over three thousand free and paid apps in the AppExchange, you can almost guarantee that you can find an app that does what you’re looking for, if not – we can help you build it.
With Lightning – Salesforce has also implemented two-factor authentication on data access and privilege changes within the platform. This acts as another layer of security against phishing attacks and exposure from database leaks. With attacks becoming increasingly common in remote offices, it is critical for an individual user to have access to the highest security standards.
In the Winter 20 release, Salesforce rolled out Lightning functionality on the Salesforce Mobile app – making everything you do on the desktop client easily accessible from your mobile device. Not only is your experience consistent from desktop to mobile, it also gives you access to the productivity boosting features that Lightning is built upon.
Lightning comes with enhanced and improved tools that help users automate their time-consuming repetitive tasks resulting in streamlineddaily workflows. These tools are classified under Lightning Flows and Process builder that have pre-programmed code functions behind the scenes. Lightning Flow operates at a level higher than Process builder, allowing an individual user to invoke specific processes as part of flows themselves, holistically automating workflows, leaving no stone unturned. Salesforce has a comprehensive overview of the difference between these tools and their unique uses as mentioned below.
Figure 1 Salesforce's Flow Builder allows you to automate complex workflows, incorporating triggers and functions across the full suite of Salesforce products and your integrations.
Maximizing the benefits of Lightning
Lightning offers so much new functionality, it’s often overwhelming for organizations to make the switch.
Customize and streamline your user experience to make data entry easier
Give your users what they want – a streamlined data entry experience that makes full use of the tools in front of them. Salesforce’s Lightning App Builder is designed with this in mind. You can customize user interfaces by simply dragging and dropping fields, eliminating the need for redundancy and improving the quality of record-level data. Not only do purpose-built data-entry pages improve the data quality – they’re easier to use, which boosts productivity.
A recent study conducted by salesforce revealed that Lightning enabled orgs were 41% more productive.
Get integrated (and reap the rewards)
Lightning was designed to make it easier for third-party integrations, so there’s simply no contest when comparing the integration choices available between Lightning and Classic. The new Lightning API is easier than ever to use, allowing you to leverage Salesforce across your entire technology stack and build upon what you’re already doing well. And, the AppExchange gives you access to integrations that are Lightning-ready.
Focus on automation
Adding automation to Classic was complicated, requiring significant technical knowledge and troubleshooting. The added automation and customization potential of Lightning Flow allows you to easily build fully automated workflows without in-depth technical knowledge. This is a can’t miss feature – by automating these tasks you can spend time on high value tasks like customer service, sales calls, or working directly with prospects to move deals forward.
Businesses and organizations are looking for ways to build more intimate, 1-to-1, customer relationships. Lightning’s improvements allow you to do just that. By automating time-consuming tasks, you can focus better utilizing Salesforce’s existing tools and resources to drive impacts for your organization. Salesforce Marketing Cloud has an incredible tool called Journey Builder that can help you deepen your customer’s experience through multiple touchpoints from email, direct mail, mobile, web, to customer service support.
- Doug Campbell, Salesforce Consultant & Project Manager, fivestar*
Salesforce makes transitioning to lightning easy
Salesforce has built a library of tools dedicated to helping customers make a smooth transition to Lightning and maximizing its value. Starting with the Lightning Experience Readiness Check, a one-click tool to automatically evaluate your org for Lightning readiness, including providing specific guidance on what you’ll need to do to make sure any features or customization that are ready to make the jump. Next, the Lightning Experience Transition Assistant provides step-by-step instructions to help admins roll out the Lightning experience across your org. Finally, the Salesforce Optimizer creates a report for admins on how they can improve your Salesforce implementation – including suggestions on how to simplify practices within your org and increase feature adoption.
Lightning is driving huge impacts for the organizations that adopt it. You should too.
Lightning allows you to do everything quicker, more efficiently, and with less effort. Salesforce has repeatedly stated that they’re not going to force users to adopt Lightning, but the numbers don’t lie. By not adopting Lightning technologies you’re missing out on proven increases in efficiency and a better experience for your users. But simply choosing to adopt Lightning doesn’t get you all of the way there - selecting the right Salesforce implementation partner can help ensure a smooth transition, improve user adoption, and increase customer engagement, while avoiding unnecessary costs and delays.
Organizations that adopt Lightning have seen a 44% conversion rate increase.
About the Author: Cameron Avrigean
Cameron Avrigean is a Marketing Coordinator at fivestar*. Cameron is an analytics fanatic with a penchant for copywriting and social media. He works with the marketing team to create engaging content, and is looking for the next big thing. Cameron holds a B.S. in Business Management from Point Park University.
About the Author: Lou Camerlengo
As fivestar*s President, Lou seems to effortlessly drive company performance and lead business development and client retention efforts. He is involved in higher education and workforce projects and serves on multiple non-profit boards.