Salesforce MVP
Apttus is thrilled to feature its latest installment of the Salesforce MVP of the Month program, in which we spotlight the exceptional leaders of the Salesforce Ecosystem that have lent us their expertise, knowledge, and ongoing contributions, ensuring both our individual improvements and the betterment of the platform as a whole. It’s thanks to these individuals that our daily questions have been answered on the Success Community, difficult admin tasks have been made easier, and even empowered some of us to get certified.

 

For April, 2017, the Salesforce MVP of the Month is Mike Martin. Much like many others, Mike learned about Salesforce on the job as an “Also Admin”, meaning Mike is going to do the job he was hired for, but he also gets to take on the role of Salesforce Administrator for the company. Mike quickly discovered what that meant, and all the power of the platform. Let’s meet Mike!

 

1.  How and when did you get started with the Salesforce ecosystem? What was your first role and initial reaction to the platform? I first learned about Salesforce on my first day in a new job as a Sales Engineer. My new boss shared that the company’s existing admin was moving on in a few short weeks, and I was going to take over managing Salesforce, as well as my Sales Engineer duties. As many of us also-admins learn, Salesforce became a huge part of my day to day, and I fell in love with the platform.
2.   What is your favorite thing to do in Salesforce and why?   I don’t get to do it nearly as much as I used to, but I love to build prototypes and demos on the platform. Just this week I had the opportunity to start a clean org and build a Lightning demo with the Milestones PM AppExchange package. It was fun to be hands on with the technology after spending a few years focused on solution architecture and client management.
3.   What is your (or your client’s) top pain point in Salesforce?  A couple of things come to mind right now. Number one is the migration to Lightning. As a 10 year old company that runs our entire business in Salesforce, we’ve got a pretty complex org with lots of apps and customizations. We have lightning turned on for anyone that requests it, but as I use it, I find I have to switch back to classic more often than I’d like. I’m excited for the next release that will bring more feature parity, and hopefully I’ll be able to stick with Lightning! The other pain point our customers are having with Salesforce is release governance. As the popularity and adoption of the platform expands within the enterprise client base, having a clean development and release management process is essential. I am excited for some of the functionality coming from SalesforceDX to help address these development process pain points.
Salesforce MVP
4.   The AppExchange has thousands of apps. For custom things you (or your client) need, do you build or buy, and why?   When working with a client to understand their requirements, I like to take an AppExchange-first approach. If there’s a requirement not met by standard Salesforce functionality, I head to the AppExchange to see if I can find any potential solutions. Nine times out of 10, the problem has already been solved. Over half of the apps on the AppExchange are free, so oftentimes I’ll find a great solution for no additional cost. If I can’t seem to find a great fit on the AppExchange, I will then turn to our internal asset library to see if it’s been built before, then head down the patch of a custom build.
5.   Many Community members depend on MVPs to get their questions answered. Who do you turn to when you have a tough question that needs to be answered?  After a quick google search, which often gets me what I need from the awesome Salesforce documentation team, I’ll head over to the community – other MVPs and community champions – typically via Twitter (#askforce) or the Success Community. The beauty with both of these platforms is that you can reach a broad audience of folks that have great domain knowledge, and typically get a response quickly.
Salesforce MVP
6.   What piece of advice would you give to someone who is just starting a career in the Salesforce Ecosystem?  It’s been said, and I will say it again…the Community! I was initially successful in the Salesforce ecosystem thanks to User Groups and Twitter, so I always encourage all new users to take advantage of resources local to them through the awesome User Group program. Twitter, the Success Community, and of course now Trailhead are also great places to get started.

7.   We all know there is life outside Salesforce. What do you enjoy doing when you are off the platform?  As many folks on twitter have figured out, I’m a big craft beer fan. I am always on the hunt for my favorite beer – the beer I haven’t had! I also volunteer at a local brewery, MashCraft, helping to pour pints and share my love of the craft. I am an all around geek. On weekends you’ll either find me putting together the next great Lego set with my boys (Alec, 5 and James, 3), or working Audio or Graphics at church.

Follow Mike on Twitter.

With a full track devoted to CRM #AwesomeAdmins, their woes, and best practices – Accelerate will draw in Salesforce MVPs from across the country. Click below to learn how you can be a part of that.