Today on the Salesforce Admins Podcast we’re joined by Aria Niazi, Senior Manager of Product Management at Salesforce, to dive into two great Lightning features: Path and Kanban.

Join us as we talk about the Pipeline Experience team’s changes for Summer 18, a look ahead to Winter 18, and best practices for Path and Kanban.

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

The Opportunities team and the origins of Path and Kanban

Aria is a longtime listener, first time guest on the pod. When Aria got started, “I didn’t know what CRM was, I didn’t know what software as a service was, but I’ve learned and I’ve embraced it,” he says. His team owns Pipeline Experience, which, “to us is how you would close a deal within Salesforce.” That’s Opportunities, at the core, but also everything that hangs off of Opportunities like Opportunity history, Opportunity splits, Products, and Pricebooks.

Two other components that Aria’s team owns are Path and Kanban. “Path started in Spring ‘15 as a mobile-only component,” Aria says, but when Salesforce introduced Lightning they heard from their customers that “Opportunities are really process-driven, and we need a workspace.” What he and his team came up with was Path, which provides a way to organize and clarify how to work on each Opportunity. They want to keep the Rep “above the fold,” so that they don’t have to scroll through a ton of information to get their job done.

“Kanban started as Opportunities-only as well, and it was originally known as ‘Pipeline View,’” Aria says. The concept of a Kanban is from project management, where you have new tasks, in-progress tasks, and completed tasks. “If you ever walk by an engineering group you might see a whiteboard with sticky notes on it, and that really what we tried to create with Kanban,” he says. This lets you look at your pipeline in a single view and make sure everything is in the right place.

Coming with Summer ‘18

So what’s coming for Summer ‘18? “We’re really excited about Dependent Picklist Support,” Aria says. Multiple teams within Salesforce worked on this to get that functionality to happen, and they’re also doing it for Path and Kanban. “Starting this summer as you change the stage, we’ll pop up those dependencies for you in a modal,” Aria says. “Our goal is really clean up the page for you and only surface it to you when it’s important to your process.”

Two other changes coming this summer are support for Path on Contacts (for customers who don’t have Leads), and also Kanban for Tasks. Aria and his team are looking forward to Winter ‘18, where they’re working having the “Recently Viewed” list view supported for Kanban.

Tips and best practices from Orgs in the know

“What I’ve seen as best-practice in Orgs that are really efficient is that people will have one or two fields, and they are really the key fields that are up there, and each one of those stages is its own layout,” Aria says. For something like next steps where the Sales Reps need to constantly update, they’ll have that next step at the top of the page as a key field on every stage of the Path so the Rep never needs to go to the Record Detail.

Another tip is to make liberal use of links to keep everyone on the same page. “Links are a great way to make sure your data doesn’t go stale,” Aria says. Putting a link to direct to some of your company’s best-practices and pricing sheets means that you have one place to go to keep everything up-to-date.

“Validation rules are an endless world,” Aria says, “if you’re go-kart racing it’s the bumpers on the outside, and you want to avoid hitting them.” So, as you’re setting up, the trick is to set your Guidance and Key Fields ahead of the stage where they’re going to hit the validation rule. “If, in stage 3, you want them to have a contact role added, then put that in the guidance in stage 2,” which gives your Rep the heads up to fill out information and not lose their work.


Lightning Spotlight


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