Headshot of David Giller and text that says, "How to Make a Career Change to Salesforce Administration."

How to Make a Career Change to Salesforce Administration

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When you’re mid-career, it’s time to start thinking about your next steps. Maybe you’ve worked in the same industry for a while and are ready for change. Or perhaps you’re considering your career path options and want to find something more fulfilling and rewarding.

If that sounds like you, then joining the Salesforce ecosystem might be the right career move. Here’s why: Salesforce is one of the fastest-growing technologies and will only keep growing. So, if you’re looking for a field with lots of growth opportunities, a Salesforce Administrator role is a great choice.

Plus, Salesforce skills are in high demand, so you’ll likely be able to find a job in no time once you make the switch. And finally, Salesforce is an incredibly fulfilling field of work. While it can be challenging, it can also be gratifying financially and emotionally.

If you’re interested in learning more about making the switch to Salesforce, read on! I’ll give you some tips on how to make the transition as smooth as possible.

What is a Salesforce Administrator?

A Salesforce Admin manages the Salesforce CRM platform in an organization. They work closely with users to ensure the system’s configuration is effective and efficient based on the ever-changing needs of the business. They also customize and maintain the platform according to the organization’s needs.

To be a successful Salesforce Admin, you need to develop strong problem-solving and analytical skills. You must be able to effectively communicate with users of all levels to understand their needs and offer solutions that meet those needs. It’s also essential to be detail-oriented to properly maintain the system and prevent issues.

Suppose you’re interested in becoming a Salesforce Admin and have developed some of these skills in other roles. In that case, you can easily apply your knowledge and expertise toward this career path. Once familiar with the Salesforce Platform, you can become a valuable asset to any organization that uses Salesforce.

Identify your transferrable skills

In most organizations, it’s common for Salesforce Admins to play many roles in their job.

Although the official job title could be called anything at all, Salesforce Admins often find themselves working as:

  • Project managers
  • General IT tech support managers
  • Database managers
  • Business analysts
  • Technical trainers
  • Systems analysts

And more!

The good news is that if you’ve worked in any of these roles, then the specific skills you’ve acquired will help you succeed as a Salesforce Admin. You’ll want to check out the Salesforce Admin Skills Kit to see a broader list of critical skills for this role.

Some examples of these skills are:

  • The ability to manage projects and prioritize tasks
  • Strong problem-solving skills
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • The ability to train others on new systems or processes
  • Analytical and detail-oriented thinking

If you’ve acquired any of these skills in your previous career experiences, then you already have a head start in becoming a successful Salesforce Admin!

The next step is learning about the Salesforce Platform.

Build your Salesforce skills

Becoming a Salesforce Admin is a great way to build your career in the tech industry. The demand for Salesforce Admins increases every year, and the certification process is relatively straightforward.

To get started, become familiar with the Salesforce ecosystem, language, and even how your current skill set will be essential in helping you achieve your career objectives. Check out the Build Your Career in the Salesforce Ecosystem trail to help you through this learning journey.

As you progress through this material, you should start to feel confident in how you can apply your prior work experience and current skills to various roles within the Salesforce ecosystem.

Remember that if your current expertise is in database administration, project management, business analysis, or system design, you’re already ahead of many other Salesforce newbies. You should be able to apply the same skills and expertise to similar roles in organizations that use Salesforce. You can develop your existing skills and advance your career journey by learning more about configuring Salesforce with drag-and-drop customization options.

Since the admin certification is typically considered the first prerequisite to most other Salesforce-focused roles, I suggest becoming more familiar with the content covered on the exam by learning the material in this trailmix.

Once you’ve passed the admin certification exam, you’ll be able to add the Salesforce Administrator credential to your resume. With this credential, you can demonstrate your skills and knowledge to potential employers. And with the demand for Salesforce Admins on the rise, there’s no better time to get certified.

Find the right Salesforce Admin role for you

If you’re a mid-career professional new to the Salesforce ecosystem, you may wonder what the best Salesforce Admin role for you would be. There are many different roles within the Salesforce Admin ecosystem, and it can be tough to know which best fits your skills and experience. However, there are a few things to keep in mind to help you identify the right role for you.

Some people want to work for small, innovative start-ups that thrive on creativity and new ideas. Other individuals may look at large enterprises with stable jobs in more traditional environments where there’s less risk involved because they offer stability, but not necessarily rapid growth or revolutionary change on the horizon. These companies often require longer tenures before promotion opportunities arise, which means you must progress slowly through your career path instead of getting ahead quickly.

Next, think about the size of your team. Do you want to manage a group dedicated entirely to Salesforce Administration or get more hands-on with platform development? Knowing this can help you narrow down potential roles!

Finally, consider your level of experience with Salesforce. If you’re just starting out, you may want to look for a role that will help you learn and grow with the platform.

Keep these things in mind as you begin your search for the perfect Salesforce Admin job, and you’ll be sure to find the right fit for your skills and experience.

Prepare to interview for a Salesforce Admin role

If you’re a mid-career professional looking to move into a Salesforce Admin role, you can do a few things to prepare for your interviews. First, take some time to familiarize yourself with the Salesforce Platform and technology. Look up tutorials online, read articles and blog posts, and try out some features yourself.

It’s also essential to demonstrate any experience working with data and managing complex projects. If you have previous experience working with CRM systems or databases, be sure to highlight that on your resume and in your interviews.

Finally, be prepared to talk about your motivations for wanting to work with Salesforce. Be ready to discuss your understanding of the platform’s benefits and what it can do for businesses. By doing this prep work, you’ll increase your chances of impressing potential employers and landing the Salesforce Admin job you want.

Transition into your new career as a Salesforce Admin

As a mid-career professional, you likely have a wealth of experience to bring to a new role as a Salesforce Admin. However, you may also feel apprehensive about transitioning into this field. Here are a few more tips to help you hit the ground running in your new career.

Learn the technical skills

The more you know about Salesforce, the better! The first step is to familiarize yourself with its capabilities. Resources like Trailhead are here to help get you started. On Trailhead, you can learn about platform features and customization options, and even prepare for the admin certification exam.

Explore what other Salesforce Admins are doing

Many online resources are also available to help you learn what other Salesforce Admins are working on—and struggling with. Blogs and YouTube channels hosted by various Salesforce professionals will give you valuable insights into what a Salesforce Admin’s typical day-to-day responsibilities are like. For example, my YouTube channel and blog touch on common topics relevant to Salesforce Admins.

Connect with other Salesforce professionals

Next, start building your network of fellow Salesforce professionals. Connect with other admins on social media, attend local meetups, and join online forums and Slack workspaces for Salesforce professionals. These connections will be invaluable as you start to navigate your new career. Join the Trailblazer Community to reach out to more experienced admins for advice and mentorship.

Finally, don’t forget to stay positive and confident in your abilities. Making a career change can be daunting, but remember that you have the experience and skill set needed to succeed. With a little hard work and dedication, you’ll soon be thriving in your new journey as a Salesforce Admin.

Take the next steps

By familiarizing yourself with the Salesforce Platform, networking with other Trailblazers, and staying positive, you’ll be on your way to success in your new career.

If I were pivoting into the Salesforce ecosystem today, here are the steps I would take to transform my career journey over the next several months.

  1. Familiarize yourself with the Salesforce ecosystem, terminology, and skills needed to succeed as a Salesforce Admin. (2 weeks)
  2. Start to network with other professionals in the industry and attend community events, virtually and in person when possible. (Ongoing)
  3. Build your technical skills in Salesforce by completing trails on Trailhead and earning badges and superbadges. (2 to 4 months)
  4. As you learn the technical skills on Trailhead, build solutions to everyday business problems in a Trailhead Playground. For example, build a web-to-lead form that captures specific data points from prospective customers and pushes them into Salesforce. Then, build some automation of what should happen once the lead is submitted. This way, you’ll get hands-on experience to transform an idea into a working solution. (2 months)
  5. Continue learning on Trailhead toward mastering the technical skills you need to pass the admin certification exam. (4 to 6 months)
  6. Leverage your existing network and newfound peers in the Trailblazer Community to explore career opportunities that match your skills, expertise, and interests! (Ongoing)

Resources

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