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Over half of the new prospects that come to us for help have issues with salesforce user adoption.

These companies have the system. But their CRM project is not the success they hoped. Something is getting in the way. And sometimes that something is people. People aren’t using salesforce. User adoption is low.

But don’t give up hope. Many companies have gone from low to high to full salesforce user adoption.

And here’s the place to start. User adoption metrics.

Because as the saying goes, “if you can’t measure it you can’t manage it”. Of course the reverse is also true. If you can measure it you can manage it.

Unfortunately managers often think that the best way to measure salesforce user adoption is to track whether people have logged in. And that’s reflected in the standard user adoption dashboard that comes with salesforce. But that dashboard is a blunt instrument. In fact it tells us next to nothing.

More subtle and powerful adoption measures are available. Ones that measure not only the quantity – but also the quality – of salesforce user adoption.

So here are 4 dashboard charts and reports that track salesforce user adoption effectively. Use these reports and charts to drive adoption and increase the benefits your business secures from your investment in salesforce licenses.

Adoption metric #1 – Opportunities with Close Dates in the past

This is a straight forward report and a great indicator of both a neglected pipeline and low salesforce user adoption. Quite simply, an Opportunity can’t close in the past so what’s it doing there on the graph?

Measuring opportunities with close dates in the past is a good way to accurately measure salesforce user adoption.

Salesforce report that measures opportunities with close dates in the past in order to provide a user adoption metrics.

The dashboard chart and report show there’s some significant deals with Close Dates earlier than today. Perhaps some of these deals have already closed but not been updated in salesforce. Maybe they need the Close Date moving to a future date. Either way it indicates both poor user adoption – and reduced visibility of the sales pipeline.

Adoption metric #2 – Number of Contacts created

Anyone in a sales, business development or account management role is meeting new people all the time. So they should be regularly adding new Contacts to salesforce. Measuring the number of new Contacts created not only provides valuable insight into each customer or prospect organisation, it improves the range of people that are available for marketing and lead nurturing purposes.

The number of Contacts created is a great measure of salesforce user adoption.

Tracking the number of new Contacts created per month provides an immediate indication of whether sales people are using salesforce.

But it’s not just about quality – we want an indication of quality. So the percentage of those Contacts that have the Email field populated has been added to the underlying report. This can just as easily apply to the phone number or other optional data. Conditional highlighting on the report allows us to immediately identify opportunities for improvement.

In the chart above we can see that Mike is adding the least number of Contacts. And many of that he does add don’t have the email address populated.

Adoption metric #3 – Percentage of Opportunity fields completed

If we’re focused on measuring user adoption among the sales team then apply this metric Opportunities. But it can just as easily be added to any object in salesforce.

The chart shows the percentage of fields on the Opportunity into which the sales person has entered data.

Include only important fields and not necessarily every field on the page layout. Of course there’s no need to include mandatory fields in the adoption metric – they’ll have data in any case.

A small percentage of non-mandatory fields completed on Opportunities means low levels of salesforce user adoption.

In our example, Ricky and Ted should really be filling in more fields on opportunities.

This is a great way to measure salesforce user adoption. But experience also shows that the more thorough the information gathering on opportunities then the higher the win rates.

Adoption metric #4 – Opportunity Stage Movement

If sales reps are using salesforce to manage their deals through the sales process then we should see the majority of Opportunities moving progressively through each Opportunity Stage.

The Opportunity Stage Movement report tells us whether this is indeed the case.

The opportunity stage movement report highlights opportunities that are not moving progressively through the sales cycle and means salesforce user adoption is low.

The report shows, for any given period of time, what has happened to the Opportunities. For example, in the chart and report above we can see that of the 335 Opportunities that were in the Prospecting Stage, 85 then moved to Investigation Stage.

However 28 Opportunities moved directly from Prospecting to Closed Won.

Depending on the nature of your business that might be an acceptable ratio – after all, some deals do close almost immediately, without going through the various other stages. But an excessive number of Opportunities following this pattern indicates that sales executives are not updating deals as they move through the sales cycle.

That means salesforce user adoption is low. It also means that sales managers are losing valuable insight into the sales pipeline and sales performance.

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