Salesforce 101 — Lesson #5: Chatter

You can’t always manage office chatter. Or can you? Salesforce’s Chatter feature allows you to build your company’s own private social network. With so many other communication channels available, it may seem redundant to enable chatter in Salesforce. However, Chatter can easily replace other communication channels and allow your organization to better communicate in one, streamlined place. Let’s walk through how to get the most out of Chatter and the steps you should take to set up your new communication platform. 


What Chatter can do

If you’re looking to keep all of your business functions in one place, enabling Chatter is a great way to do that. Rather than spreading communication across multiple platforms, Chatter allows you to integrate communication feeds into Salesforce. This can help you have more effective communication, and that’s no small thing. Good workplace communication has been shown to have a ninety-one percent ROI

Chatter is also customizable, giving you complete control over how communication is handled. Through feed-tracking and group creation, users can ensure that they are getting all the communication they need and nothing that they don’t. 

Now that we know what Chatter can do, let’s look at some best practices for setting it up. 


Identity the best use-cases

Before you integrate Chatter, it’s important to identify how your organization will use it. It might be helpful to talk to each department and identify ways that they could utilize Chatter. Common uses of Chatter include company-wide Chatter groups, polls to gauge employee feedback, and event planning groups. While those are common uses, you can customize your Chatter and Chatter groups to whatever your needs may be. Effective communication increases employee morale, so why not build out communication channels customized to your employees’ specific roles, tasks, and personal interests? 


Chatter champions

Integrating Chatter can’t be a one-person show. It requires careful collaboration to get the feature up and running successfully. Three key people need to be involved when it comes to building an effective Chatter: the executive sponsor, the evangelist, and the community manager. These roles likely aren’t ones that already exist in your organization, so you’ll need to identify current members who best fit and are willing to take on each role. 

– The executive sponsor is one executive from the company who engages with Chatter daily. Your sponsor should be someone who sees the importance of collaboration and communication. 

– The evangelist is someone who loves facilitating conversations. They can help answer questions, create groups, post content, and—most importantly—encourage others to engage on Chatter. This role might be best suited for an HR employee or someone who is already well-connected within your organization. 

– The community manager should be someone who likes sharing and curating interactive content. Their role focuses on providing resources in Chatter as well as tracking and growing user engagement. 


Create your plan

Now that you’ve identified your uses and champions, it’s time to create an implementation plan. One way to do this is by creating a schedule that slowly introduces your organization to Chatter. Within this schedule, make employees aware of the implementation date and identify your champions so they can be referred to for questions and support. You should also outline your Chatter etiquette (or Chattiquette, as Salesforce calls it) so that employees know what to expect from the channel. This can include best practices on mentions or what content is considered relevant to each group. The more you educate employees on the plan and expectations for Chatter, the easier the transition will be. 


Let Chatter do its thing

While it may seem like a lot of work to set up Chatter, it’s easy to manage and will simplify your company’s communication. Once it’s established, you’ll find that Chatter runs itself. Employees will be able to easily access documents, disseminate knowledge, and collaborate from any location. Rather than manage email chains and redundant questions, streamline your company’s communication by integrating Chatter into your Salesforce platform. 

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