Getting Started with Salesforce AI

AI opens new opportunities for productivity, efficiency, and innovation. What is exciting for Salesforce users is that Salesforce recently announced tools for generative AI products for sales, service, marketing, commerce, and IT. These new tools will transform the way organizations handle, monitor, and scale customer interactions. Einstein GPT goes beyond basic data management to intelligently analyze customer data, generate personalized responses, recommendations, predictions, and automate various functions of customer management.

The path to AI is having a strong data foundation. It’s tempting to build your plan by focusing on the infrastructure and tools, but first, you need to define your strategy. There are a few simple steps that you can take to ensure success:

Salesforce AI Step 1: Build A Data Inventory

Be a detective: Review all of the ways that your organization captures data. This could include Sales, online/offline sources, web applications, local servers, and spreadsheets. Capture key information about your data assets including location, owner, description of use, frequency/method of update, and quality assessment.

Since AI is only as good as the data that fuels it, Salesforce has developed Data Cloud, where customers can connect data stored in Salesforce with other data sources, and unify and harmonize that data to create a real-time view of their customers to drive personalized experiences across sales, service, marketing and commerce. Consider leveraging Salesforce Data Cloud to bring together one robust customer profile allowing your organization to take advantage of a 360-degree view of your customers to make better decisions.
Data Cloud

*Image courtesy of Salesforce

Step 2: Data Normalization

Building data normalization and standards in Salesforce involves setting up processes and guidelines to ensure that the data entered in your Salesforce org is consistent, accurate, and standardized. This helps to maintain data quality, improves reporting and analysis, and enhances the effectiveness of your business operations.  

Establish clear data standards and guidelines for each type of data you capture including standardizing formats, naming conventions, and values. Consider utilizing validation rules to ensure data standards. Use picklists for fields with predefined options to ensure consistent values. This minimizes the chance for typos or variations. Implement duplicate management tools to identify and prevent duplicate records. Use automations to automate data normalization tasks.  Integrate Salesforce with external data sources to automatically update and enrich your data with standardized information.  

Conduct regular data audits to identify areas where data normalization standards might not be followed and clean and update data as needed. Continuously monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of your data normalization efforts soliciting feedback from users to identify pain points and areas for improvement.

Step 3: Data Governance

Establishing a data governance committee is a strategic approach to managing and maintaining the quality, integrity, security, and compliance of your organization’s data. A data governance committee is responsible for setting policies, guidelines, and standards related to data management. Follow these steps to set up a data governance committee:

  • Define Committee Objectives: Clearly define the objectives of the Data Governance Committee. Identify the scope of data governance within your Salesforce ecosystem, such as data quality, privacy, compliance, and integration.
  • Appoint Committee Members: Select individuals who have a deep understanding of Salesforce and its data-related challenges.  Include representatives from various teams, such as Salesforce administrators, data stewards, compliance officers, and business stakeholders.
  • Determine Meeting Frequency and Structure: Decide on the frequency of committee meetings, considering the pace of Salesforce changes and data updates. Determine whether meetings will be virtual or in-person and establish a clear agenda for each session.
  • Roles and Responsibilities: Clearly define the roles and responsibilities of committee members.  This might include roles like chairperson, data steward, Salesforce Administrator, data analyst, etc.
  • Develop Policies and Standards: Collaborate with committee members to create data governance policies and standards specific to your Salesforce environment. This should include guidelines for data entry, data hygiene, data sharing, and integration practices.

Following this simple plan will allow your organization to prepare to be able to take full advantage of Salesforce’s Einstein GPT features. Be sure to reach out to Salesforce to understand what tools are available to you right now and what costs may be involved. Have any more questions? Don't hesitate to contact Prolocity and someone on our team will reach out to discuss with you further!


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