With the distraction of the holidays past us, we need to move on and focus our efforts on the Salesforce Spring 14 release notes. Following the successful habits of a Salesforce Admin that means we need a strategy to get through the (now) 319 pages. So here is our plan- for this post I’m going to do a first look. And so should you. Get the release notes and look through them for features that interest you. No deep dive or late night cramming, just a thumb through to see what strikes our fancy.
Next week- a deeper dive to look at the features in Salesforce Spring 14 release notes that come automatically turned on. These are the features we need to start planning for immediately. The following week will be a look at the features that require setup or features you need to contact Salesforce to get access to. These are features that we can plan for rollout after the release goes live. That means over the next three weeks we will have read through the notes at least three times. And just to put a little more awesome frosting on this fabulous cake, I’m going to throw a couple podcasts in there as well. We have a lot to do, so let’s get started!
According to the release notes this feature is explained as the following- “An order is an agreement between a company and a customer to provision services or deliver products with a known quantity, price, and date. Order products represent those services or products.” The link they provide is to a 5 year old, 210 point idea. While I definitely agree that the opportunity process seems a bit limited at times, this will help expand it. I’m curious to hear your feedback if you think this feature will be beneficial or if you have solved this with a custom object already.
I have to tell you that I am very excited for this feature, but I’m curious how organizations will manage adoption around it. Skills in the release notes are described as “Skills allow users to share information about their professional expertise. With skills, users can discover, collaborate with, and endorse others based on their knowledge.” For those of us on LinkedIn we are familiar with this crowd-based skill-endorsement idea. Of course LinkedIn is a very different application of the use of skills, so I’ll be curious to see if this feature “grows up” and skill moderation is available. And if they expand skills to include certifications. I do like that custom fields, validation rules, and workflow rules along with triggers can be used. Presumably you could set a validation rule so that only skills with certain words could be entered. That might make adoption a bit of an easier pill to swallow. I think for large organizations skills and giving users the ability to find and collaborate with others based on skill is a great feature.
Flexible Sorting in Reports
It’s great to see Salesforce Analytics ‘grow up’. Over the last few releases we have seen bucket reports, joined reports and now flexible sorting. As described in the release notes “In a report with multiple grouping levels, sort groupings by the summary value that defines each grouping.” It’s good to have more options now than just simply clicking on the headers.
Repeat Tasks on a Flexible Schedule
Perhaps I’m in the minority, but I like tasks in Salesforce. Even as an Admin they helped me schedule my day and when I was in sales I loved them. That being said, repeating tasks are a welcome feature. But the best line in the release notes around this feature is this one “Use repeating tasks to make a task recur a specified number of days after a trigger that you choose: The next task in the series is created only when the current task is due or marked completed.” The next task is only created when the previous is marked completed! Throws confetti! Goodbye task clutter!
Partial Data Sandboxes
I’ll admit, as a ButtonClick Admin I loved my full copy sandbox but not every organization has one. And the refresh schedule wasn’t always the most friendly- especially when you have a tight deadline or a big project. I’m liking this idea of a partial data sandbox and 5 day refresh schedule.
Mass Assign Permission Sets
I have to admit, the more I use permission sets the more I love them. If you aren’t familiar with Permission Sets I’m going to direct you to the Andy Ognenoff podcast or the Adam Torman podcast. However to this point assigning permission sets to multiple users was not exactly fun. So you either had to deal with the most monotonous task ever next to building a change set, or download an AppExchange app. It looks like with Spring 14 you will need to find a new reason to drink, because mass assignment will be much easier.
Ok so doing a casual walk through of the notes these were the features that really stood out for me. Actually many features did, but these bubbled to the top of my list. Next week I’ll take a look at those key features that come automatically turned on in Spring 14. These are the features you will need to plan for first.