Recent Team Breakdowns

It's absolutely true that the total number of Salesforce Admins on your team is an important metric.

If you don’t have enough Salesforce Admins, it’s a problem. Your user base won't be supported and opportunities to develop a better user experience will be missed, both of which contribute to low adoption rates.

However, if you ONLY have Salesforce Admins, it’s also a problem.

Here’s what we mean:

Look at the Salesforce team at Lucid Software.

  • 380 Sales Reps
  • 13-person GTM Systems team
  • 8 Salesforce Admins (1 Admin per 47.5 Reps)

At a glance, you might think these ratios lead to a well supported user base. In reality, this is likely an OVER investment in Salesforce Admins.

And an UNDER investment in functions that boost team efficiency - like a couple Business Analysts and another Product Manager. (We talk about the importance of Salesforce Product Managers here, specifically in the context of Zillow's team.)

In contrast, BlackLine takes a far more balanced approach:

  • 500 Sales Reps
  • 11-person GTM Systems team
  • 2 Salesforce Admins (1 Admin per 250 Reps)

And you might be thinking, well clearly they don’t have enough Admins.

The balance of their team structure makes up for those ratios, though.

Sure, there are only 2 Salesforce Admins. But they also have 4 Developers, 1 Architect, 2 Business Analysts, and 2 Product Owners.

The Admin:Rep ratio only matters in the context of user support.

A well constructed team allows for a clear division of responsibilities. And this type of structure ensures your dedicated Admins have the bandwidth to focus on the most important aspect of their role - end user satisfaction.

In the Lucid scenario, the lines blur too much.

Everything gets thrown into the general bucket of Admin responsibilities.

This is how inefficiency creeps in.

Meanwhile, the BlackLine structure allows for everyone to be clear on THEIR JOB.

  • Administrators focus on users and help with configuration on projects.
  • Developers handle complex build and integration work on projects.
  • Business Analysts take care of stakeholders and documentation.
  • Product Owners handle user stories and roadmap planning.
  • Architects drive on complex solutions design.

Takeaway

All of this is to say that it does matter how many Salesforce Admins you have in a full-time or fractional capacity; however, you need to look at the broader picture as well. (For best practices on how many Salesforce Admins you need, check out this resource.)

Be very clear on what the role of a Salesforce Admin is and what other roles are important to a high-functioning Salesforce team. Only then can you devise the correct resource model to develop a high-performing Salesforce platform for internal teams.