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Why is the Salesforce CRM implementation project unique for KSU and Higher Ed in general?
I think our CRM implementation is unique both for higher education and in implementing a CRM in general. I think the primary reason this is such a special initiative for Kent State is because we are developing an enterprise solution not just for one or two areas at the University, but for everyone that is involved with student and alumni activities across the board.
How is it unique / different from other systems you have developed in?
Salesforce is a unique system because it allows users to build and manage an environment that has the potential to fit perfectly within their organization. Take our situation, for example. We are currently building a custom object, the Recruitment Lifecycle, to get a full view of a student’s journey through the recruitment process for each admitting unit. We are building and customizing page layouts and forms to meet each individual unit’s Recruitment Lifecycle requirements, and we are developing solutions to automate processes that create and update object records. In a nutshell, we are changing the way the system operates to meet our unique needs.
What was your motivation to join a local Salesforce developer group community?
Salesforce is such a versatile product that is used throughout organizations in higher ed, and by so many other industries. As Kent State grows and evolves, I think having a workforce that is connected with the community gives us a competitive edge to develop new and innovative solutions, increase efficiency, and become a role model in the realm of higher ed technology. I also think that the more familiar we are on new ideas and solutions in the community, the more capable we are to make changes within our own organization. I would encourage everyone involved in the Salesforce implementation to connect with other Salesforce users through professional groups, online success communities, and wherever you can! There are some great ideas out there.
What was your motivation to take and pass the Salesforce Administrator certification exam?
My motivation to take the Salesforce Admin exam was to gain knowledge on the platform and to learn new concepts that I hadn’t yet had exposure to within our own environment. The extended knowledge is already helping us better understand best practices and efficiencies in developing system solutions.
Any advice for others who are studying for the exam?
The first thing I did to study for the exam was explore and learn hands-on within my Trailhead account. I would encourage others to create new objects and fields, build workflow rules, learn as much as you can within administrative settings, and familiarize yourself with how everything is connected. Another resource I found beneficial was the Salesforce Success site – reading through others’ use cases helped me to understand the real world application of a lot of different Salesforce concepts. The third party practice exams I stumbled upon were very helpful as well.