How to Organize Documents with Salesforce Files & Chatter

Image source Are you guilty of terrible organizational knowledge management? You’re certainly not alone. The average American employee wastes six weeks per year searching for needed information or items. Research […]

About the Author: Gary Galvin

January 26, 2015

Salesforce Files and Chatter

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Are you guilty of terrible organizational knowledge management?

You’re certainly not alone. The average American employee wastes six weeks per year searching for needed information or items. Research by IDC reveals that 60% of business executives believe their employees’ performance suffers due to hard-to-find files and missing information. While only 76% of executives surveyed ranked organizational information as mission critical, I believe the vast majority of us would agree that file organization and availability is crucial for sales and marketing success.

Sales and marketing professionals must be efficient. While improved processes are key to this efficiency, no amount of procedures can account for difficult-to-find files, poor file structure, or inconsistent file permissions. Salesforce Chatter has powerful integration with Salesforce Files, allowing your team to productively engage in real-time around crucial information, while successfully minimizing wasted effort. Here’s what you need to know about how these two Salesforce features work together to benefit sales and marketing teams:

Salesforce Files and Salesforce Chatter? Together?

Many Salesforce users are at least slightly familiar with Salesforce files. This feature was a ground-breaking approach to cloud-based file management. Unlike other cloud-based solutions that allow mobile access and syncing across devices, the platform offered new and improved features, including social integration and a strong respect for real-world business logic. Files can be connected to client accounts, or service records.

Instead of having to sort through a tedious or poorly-organized file structure,

[tweet_quote hashtags=”#SalesforceFiles” ]Salesforce Files makes collaboration as simple as tagging and linking the documents you need.[/tweet_quote] Files are always accessible when you need them. Even if two different projects reference to the same file, your risk of version control issues are basically eliminated.

[tweet_quote hashtags=”#SalesforceFiles” ]When combined with Salesforce Chatter, the practicality of Files is essentially off the charts.[/tweet_quote] Sales people live and die by their mobile devices, and Chatter is designed to enhance the way sales and marketing professionals actually work. With the help of social features like comments and polling, it’s easy for management to capture employee feedback on documents, or vice versa.

Best of all, Salesforce Chatter is whip smart. Smart enough to recommend relevant documents when they come up in conversation, so no one has to go looking for the needed file or risk coming up empty handed. It wouldn’t be unreasonable to compare these two features in tandem with a really proficient personal assistant!

What Does This Mean for Sales and Marketing?

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Simply put, Salesforce Chatter and Salesforce Files can literally change everything for overworked Sales and Marketing directors, even if they’re tasked with managing very large, busy, or remote teams. Consider the following use cases, which probably occur more often than any of us would like to admit:

  • Repeatedly emailing team members to capture acknowledgement on crucial documents
  • Waiting – and losing productivity – while waiting for internal feedback on a proposal, budget or marketing campaign concept
  • Answering basic questions from newer team members, which come up on a fairly regular basis.

In a perfect world, we’d all have the budget to develop a home-grown internal wiki system. This system would feature smart search, tagging, and employee engagement for client and internal knowledge management. However, very few of us can even dream about that level of a solution. Short of a large-scale, custom development project, Salesforce Chatter and Salesforce Files are pretty much the next best thing.

In the case of the business situations outlined above, Salesforce users have the option to:

  • Capture employee feedback on critical documentation with a few clicks
  • Tag critical employees and capture document feedback within a single system, eliminating the need for compiling multiple streams of feedback into a master document
  • Easily document, tag, and publish frequently-asked questions about internal processes or clients; providing team members with the ability to efficiently search from mobile devices.

Perhaps best of all, Salesforce Files offers smart integration with 3rd-party platforms. If your marketing technologists live and die by a particular project management tool or prefer your existing storage options, the files can be easily imported. It keeps you all on the same page, even if your entire team is still slightly resistant to the use of Salesforce.

Centralizing communications is immensely challenging. It has always been a struggle for even the most proficient sales and marketing leaders, and there are no simple solutions to this very real problem. While there are no silver bullets for managing a busy, remote, or disorganized team, the use of Salesforce Files and Salesforce Chatter in tandem comes pretty close. It’s optimized for the way even the busiest professionals work, and seamlessly centralizes your communications and files, so you can focus on progress and improvement.

Enjoy this read? Check out additional tips for Salesforce power users in our recent blog, Be an Effective Salesforce User with These 7 Free Apps.

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