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Salesforce Heretic » Templates… Over-dependance is a bad thing… mmmkay?

August 26, 2006

Templates… Over-dependance is a bad thing… mmmkay?

Filed under: The Heretic, The Soapbox — heretic @ 8:35 pm

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So I’ve got this client who is a customer of a company currently using Salesforce.com under the “Communications & Media” category. The services being provided to my client are more then over their heads so I’m acting as point of contact thru implementation. (Not an uncommon thing really.)

Unfortunately this has been one of those Murphy-like projects — if it can go wrong it will, and in the defense of the C&M company not all the problems have been their fault. But if I get one more SFDC-based email template from these guys I’m gonna flip my top.

Now going down the list, I don’t mind the ‘Welcome to XXXX’ email that we started with. Now they apparently open cases for their, ‘installations’ to track what needs to be done after you sign up. Ours wasn’t assigned until, really, after we had basically semi-turned-up service with them. Why? No idea. And it really doesn’t matter to me either. We had so many problems up through that point we were already dealing with the 3rd / 4th level of engineers, so it was moot as far as I was concerned.

Then I got the 2nd welcome email, sent when the install engineer was assigned, asking me for some information so they could turn on our service, this was over 2 months after the case was opened. Nevermind the service was, for all practial purposes, up and running. Now I can admit, having been the recipient of 100+ note cases/tickets in the past not wanting to read through all 100+ notes. But sending out requests to customers blind asking for information you already have just looks bad.

Now those of you who’ve read my prior blogs, or my posts on the SFDC forums know what happened next. I called him out on it. Now the response was especially interesting as he called it a ‘formality’ and that the information wasn’t in the case. So, mentially, I’m thinking, “lets add ‘not documenting cases’ to the list of problems…”. And we move on. (Yes I gave him the information in my first reply too, I’m not a complete ass. :D )

So 10 days later, still experienceing problems, and open issues galore I get another welcome email telling me our installation is “complete”. Now apparently the thing is it’s supposedly complete-enough to start billing. (That’s debateable, but really not an installation issue by any stretch.) The “complete” email is sent when billing starts. Now this installation has been, really, nothing but problem after problem after problem after problem, and to get an email saying it’s complete would infurate most people. It sure infurated my client when I sent it to him.

So that brings me to my thought for today….

Before you write an email template — or tell your users to use them, please make sure you know exactly how they are being used. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line — your users will not want to have to re-read every email going out to make sure it fits 100%. But the image your company gets when your user takes that shotcut can make you look like idiots. It’s the difference between being quality and being quick. People remember both.

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    Email Templates: Some Sound Advice…

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    The Official Salesforce Blog — August 28, 2006 @ 3:54 pm

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