The Magic of Lightning Components with Marcus Torres

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Today on the Salesforce Admins Podcast we’re speaking with Marcus Torres, Senior Director of Product Management at Salesforce focused on Lightning Components.

Join us to learn about the best way to use Components in Lightning, how to get executives on board with the transition, and the new features coming for Winter 18.

You should subscribe for the full episode, but here are a few takeaways from our conversation with Marcus Torres.

The Magic of Components

Marcus has had a lot of roles at Salesforce over the years, from Mobile to Force.com and now onto the Components area of Lightning: “I’m really trying to bring value to our customers and help them customize as easily as possible.”

Classic Salesforce is a page-by-page model— as Marcus says it’s just “tab tab tab tab tab tab tab. For anyone that’s used Classic Salesforce, that’s what they know and, to some degree, love.” However, if you wanted to change one of those pages you needed to rewrite it and overwrite it and own that customization.

With Lightning, however, everything is a Component, and you can combine those Base Components into an Experience Component. It’s like getting a set of Legos that you can put together to make bigger things. You don’t need to rewrite the whole page to get different functionality, you just put your own custom Component alongside the stock ones, and they can listen to each other and interact in ways that were never possible in Classic.

“People have gotten past how they know Salesforce as a page with fields on it. Now what they’re doing is trying to put a lot more into a single view.” If they know that someone working on a page not only needs to see data but also interact with some Elements key to that role, they’re just placing it right on the page with custom Components that also give the Admin control of that flow. There’s even a custom Component implementation someone has made for tracking their craft cocktails.

How to Drive Lightning Adoption

When it comes to rolling out Lightning, Marcus notices a lot of commonalities between users. People are first of all excited about the new technology, the new UI, the features that are available, and how they’re going to use them. “But,” Marcus says, “there’s a Yin to that Yang: fear of change.” People learn Salesforce their way, and some have been using it for almost twenty years, so it can feel like a big risk to go away from what you know.

To help with this transition, Marcus recommends starting by learning what’s new in Lightning. The Lightning Now tours offer two days in an immersive program that makes sure that everyone knows what’s in Lightning, what’s coming, and how to use it. “That advocacy that you need to create needs to be both top-down and bottom-up,” so you need to know how to pitch it to both groups. Showing the higher-ups a side-by-side of the Dashboard in Classic vs. Lightning makes the case pretty clear— as Marcus says, “executives love pretty pictures.”

What’s New for Winter 18

For Winter 18, Marcus’ team is delivering over 25 new base Components. For comparison, the last couple of releases have had around four per release, so it’s a massive bump up. “These Components just work,” says Marcus, and they’re focused on giving Devs and Admins abilities that feel like magic.

One Developer Component coming out is called the Lightning Picklist Path. It’s like the Path that you already know, but instead of having to go to setup to create a custom path with fields and help text you just make the visual of a path and base it on a Picklist and it’s done.

The new Lightning Report Builder is also amazing. “From the day I walked into this company five years ago to three months ago, any time I had to create a Report I just hated it.” The new Report Builder, however is a joy to use, and Marcus actually finds himself looking forward to working with it.

For more insights, make sure to follow Marcus on Twitter (@mtorres_tweet)

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