Top 5 new features for Staffing and Recruiting: Salesforce Spring '21 Release
I just spent 4+ hours pouring over the Salesforce Spring '21 release notes. It's always like a treasure hunt and I enjoy searching for updates that matter to my recruiting/staffing clients.
As much as I love looking for the diamonds, it's a good thing I had some strong coffee and a good protein bar to power through all the detail. I find that the most important, fundamental updates get buried under the fancy stuff.
I am here to peel back the release notes to reveal the stuff that you can implement tomorrow with no new license cost and minimal setup effort.
The items in this list are indeed free and included with Salesforce (Ok... I made one exception for Pardot since many of my customers have it). Are there cool new features that cost extra? Heck yeah. High Velocity Sales, Bots, Einstein AI tools, and Salesforce Meetings all have exciting new features. However, that's not the focus of this review.
Ok... let's get to it.
5: Catch duplicates before saving
This may seem like a small thing, but I assure you, it's a big deal. Is there anything more frustrating than filling out a bunch of information on a new record, only to find that a similar record has already been created? Before you had to click "Save" to find out it may be a duplicate or search for it ahead of time. This feature will alert you as soon as it detects the potential duplicate no matter where you are in the process of entering data.
Caveat: It only works on dynamic form pages and, by proxy, custom objects. If you don't know what that is, check it Salesforce Ben's overview here: https://www.salesforceben.com/salesforce-dynamic-forms-overview-deep-dive-tutorial (Side note - www.salesforceben.com is an excellent Salesforce resource). Dynamic Forms is a relatively new feature and worth checking out if you aren't familiar.
There is an idea to add this to standard objects - go here to vote for it!
4: Mobile and Tablet App Improvement
The mobile app used to be obnoxious to use. It was too slow and hard to navigate. I didn't like it when I was a recruiter, but that was years ago. How much has your phone changed in the last decade? Quite a bit.
Unfortunately most recruiters and sales people still have this perception of the mobile app, which is why the majority of the staffing/recruiting firms don't use Salesforce's mobile app extensively. The most they do with it is quickly look up a phone number or an address when they are on their way to meet a candidate or client. It can do so much more.
Salesforce has invested heavily in improving their mobile offerings over the last several years. The Spring '21 release brings several key updates that help make the experience even better. Specifically, here are three updates that matter:
Mobile Home (Beta): Here is Salesforce's explanation of this update:
"Welcome to your new home! When you use Mobile Home, you’re greeted by a set of customizable, dynamic cards that show personalized information. View your reports, upcoming events, recent records, and more. Your cards display information that’s based on how you use the app, and you can easily rearrange, add, and remove cards right in the app. When Mobile Home is turned on, it’s the landing page and first tab for all iOS users."
Ability to easily improve Lightning page performance on Mobile: This will give admins more tools to help mobile experiences run faster and make the mobile experience better. Learn more here.
New tablet app. Learn more here.
3: Pardot Improvements: Avoid unintentional unsubscribe and setting up specific-link completion actions
There were a number of really cool Pardot updates (see them all here), but a couple stuck out to me:
Two-click unsubscribe: This has been a true problem. Security bots click all links on emails to do a security scan, and one of those links is always an unsubscribe link. Previously you had to set up the email preference change to take care of this issue.
Specify a Link for Completion Actions in Pardot Emails: This is huge! This simple update will allow for much more refined and targeted follow up and tracking. I know this one will make a lot of Pardot admins (and marketing execs) very happy. My initial reaction? "It's about time!"
2: Email and Campaign Updates
Similar to mobile, the email tools in Salesforce are an underused part of the system for most firms. In reality, they are jam-packed with features that are super useful. Want to send variable-data mass emails to a targeted list of prospective clients and track who is looking at your emails? No problem. Want to create cool sourcing templates and share them with your recruiting team? Done. There are many reasons to use the built-in email tools in Salesforce.
With the Spring '21 release there are even more tools that make it an even more attractive tool set. Here are a couple that stood out to me:
Soft Bounce detection: This is important because the system use to only track hard bounces, which usually means that the person's email is no longer valid (most likely they left the company). Now, you will be able to track soft bounces, meaning that the recipient's inbox is full, email file size may be too large, or the server may be down (among other reasons).
You can now use Lightning Email Templates in Salesforce Automations: No more using Classic templates for emails. Now, all of your internal and external templates can be managed and created in Lightning. Read more here.
Track Accounts as Campaign Members (Beta): I have built out custom objects to allow one of my staffing clients track and market to Accounts (instead of people/contacts). More and more of my clients are moving to ABM (Account Based Marketing). This will allow native campaign functionality and will make running ABM easier to perform and track. Bravo! Read more here.
1: Numerous Fundamental Lightning improvements
Ok. I know there have been some pretty legit reasons to stay with Classic in the past, but feature parity has a reached a point where there is no excuse for staying with Classic. Flat out, Lightning is better and you are missing so much staying with Classic.
This release brought a few more features to the surface that make it even more attractive and painless.
Concerned about slow page load speeds? Don't be. In addition to a whole host of best practices that allow you to load pages quickly, you now have the ability to monitor the performance of not just the page, but each component on the page. It's pretty dang cool:
Worried that you won't be able to do manual sharing in Lightning? Now you can do that too:
I am not trying to talk down to anyone that still has Classic. It takes time and money to make the transition. I get it. With that said, it's time to make it happen. You are missing out on a lot. All (and I mean all) the cool new features are on the Lightning platform.
Ok... I am done preaching :)
Wrapping it up
My Spring '21 release rating for my clients? I would give it a 7 out of 10. There are a number of good, fundamental updates, but nothing that I see as jaw-dropping and game-changing for the staffing/recruiting world.
Hopefully this list helps you get the most out of the new release and spurs on some ideas that will help you kick butt in '21.
What about you? Which updates are you most excited about? Post your thoughts!