Salesforce Spring ’16 Highlights for Nonprofits

Salesforce Spring '16

Spring ’16 is coming to sandboxes in January and production instances in February. Here are our favorite features of this release for nonprofit organizations.

Process Builder

The Process Builder improvements just keep on coming! Here are the three that I’m most excited about in this release:

  • Email alerts on Tasks and Events — How was this not a thing already?? We’ll never know. At least we have it now! Finally, you can send an email to your Development Officer to make sure they get reminded of that upcoming task to follow up with a major donor!
  • Reordering criteria nodes — Drag-and-drop, just like you’d expect! It works great. No more stressing about getting your criteria in the right order before you start — just reorder them on the fly! Imagine you were firing an email alert to your Development Director when you received a gift over $1000, but now you want to fire a different email to her, plus an email to your ED, and create a task for a donor follow up call for gifts over $5000. The new $5000 node would have to come first, otherwise those gifts would fire off the $1000 node and never hit the $5000 node. Now, instead of needing to re-create your process with this new logic order, you can simply create your $5000 node and then drag it up to the top! Check it out…
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  • Automatically reusing the Process name when you clone it — It’s a little thing, but retyping the Process name every time you created a new version was oh-so-annoying. Hooray for time-saving tweaks!
Improved Quick Actions

Here’s a pair of new features that together can have a big impact: you can now decide if a Quick Action should create a Feed item or not, and Quick Actions can have custom success messages. Quick Actions are really powerful productivity boosters — create a case or an application without leaving the Contact page! — but their intimate link with the Feed has been a deterrent to some orgs. They created a lot of “noise” on the Feed and could bury record details way down the page, and it was hard to tell if they had worked correctly or not without scrolling all the way down to your related lists. No longer! Simply uncheck the handy box and define your success message in your Quick Action configuration…

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…and your action will tell you it fired successfully and leave your Feed noise-free!

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Picklists

Picklists are slowly getting even better… Ever import a spreadsheet and realize you inadvertently dumped a bunch of invalid values into a picklist field? Suddenly you see “Completed” and “Complete” side by side on a chart? Restricted Picklists to the rescue! Currently in beta, this is a setting that will enforce that only the defined picklist values can be written even on imports, integrations, and other updates via the API. This will make API updates more fragile, but will be a big win for data integrity! Restricted picklists are available in all Dev orgs and Sandboxes, and in Production orgs with Pilot participation. (Talk to your Account Executive about Pilots.)

The Global Picklists pilot has been expanded to include Dev orgs and Sandboxes so everyone can try them out in a safe space. Global Picklists, which carry those API restrictions by definition, allow you to draw the values for multiple picklists across different objects from the same master set. Superstar admin Vered Meir shared with us that Global Picklists will enable YearUp to synchronize their “Site” picklists across 8+ objects, so as they continue to scale and add sites, they’ll only have to add them in one place rather than needing to go into each individual object to make the update. Saving time and improving data quality, one feature at time!

Communities

For the Power of Us Hub hounds (you do use the Hub, right?), or those of you who use Chatter extensively in your own orgs, there are a couple nice Chatter enhancements. First, you can edit link and file posts now! Handy when you realize you made an embarrassing typo on a critical post, or forgot to tag your favorite Hub Hero!

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And second, @mentioning fellow Hubbers should be easier now — the dropdown won’t be strictly alphabetical, but will display the folks you interact with most at the top of the list.

Lightning Experience

Finally, the list of features covered in the Lightning Experience keeps growing. Campaigns have joined in on the fun! In beta, at least. The lack of Campaigns in Lightning in Winter ‘16 seemed to be one of the biggest deterrents for nonprofits making the switch. Now that we can (start) Campaigning away in Lightning as of Spring ‘16, I expect a lot more nonprofits will be considering the switch. Check out the latest transition guidance in the Release Notes.

There’s a ton more goodies in this release, but these were our favorite initial discoveries! What other gems have you found?