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How to Keep a Distributed Workforce Engaged Using Salesforce

Written by

Manu Varma

VP Alliances and Friends of Traction at Traction on Demand

How to Keep a Distributed Workforce Engaged Using Salesforce

Salesforce is well known for what it can do for customers in their sales journey. At Traction on Demand, we’ve also leveraged the power of Salesforce to connect with our employees around the globe. We wanted one system to drive employee engagement that’s connected to our regular “business” platform, to maintain data truth, avoid unnecessary technical debt and create a great experience for employees and managers alike.

There are a couple of key things that employees are always looking for:

1. Real-time access to how they’re doing that they can access anywhere, anytime.

2. Next steps in their career progression: what they need to do, to what extent, to what outcome.

The Salesforce platform has helped build and improve our culture by leveraging its ease of configuration and flexibility across various lines of business. We’ll look at employee engagement through four lenses: onboarding, real-time performance metrics, showing a path forward and connecting humanity with activity.

1. Onboarding

Employee engagement starts with onboarding. Having role-specific onboarding, as well as company-wide mandated training through video, self-paced, or instructor-led interventions enables employees to be productive more quickly. It facilitates consistency across geographies and ensures messages are not diluted. The business outcome enables employees to take control of their onboarding journey and simultaneously provide insight to the hiring manager of the incoming employee’s progress

We’ve built job specific onboarding paths for different positions as detailed below. These contain domain and role-specific training as well as company-wide, and regulatory training — all built and tracked on Salesforce.


2. Real-Time Performance Metrics: KPIs and Softer Skills

Imagine having all your team’s performance data in one place? Not having to toggle between systems, and gather feedback from all around the company.

Having every employee’s performance on your “business” operating system has many benefits. Employees don’t need to wait for their annual or quarterly reviews — the business KPIs are the employee KPIs.

At Traction on Demand, we’ve centralized our employees’ performance on a single dashboard that captures their KPIs as well as some of the “softer” and more crowd-sourced feedback they have been providing and getting in return. Below is an excerpt from our performance dashboard highlighting some KPI’s around execution for our consultants. In this case, the utilization over the last 30 days is at 101.9 per cent; over the last 60 days has been at 78 per cent. We also can see their capacity on the next row down. Employees all know what they have done, what they are expected to accomplish and what is coming in the future.


In this portion of the same performance dashboard, pictured below, we see more of the “softer” side of our KPIs. We can see V2MOM measures (how they are progressing in terms of the goals they have set). Next, the Expert Path Progress outlines the steps they have taken in their career advancement. Skill is the crowd-sourced “badging” component, where there is peer-to-peer recognition for great work: 100% customized. Last, the certifications show the continuous improvement the employees have made towards certifications on the Salesforce platform.


Here is an example of some of the many badges our employees have made for peer-to-peer recognition. This helps open up the feedback valve to anyone in the organization that has worked with any employee to provide feedback by way of badging.


By incorporating all employee KPIs with more “free format” crowd-sourced feedback, employees feel empowered, enabled and engaged to give their best.

3. Showing a Path Forward: More Than Just People Management

The third lens to explore around employee engagement is career paths. One of the biggest mistakes I still see companies do is promote employees that are great individual contributors to a people managing role as a natural career progression. Companies need to create expert or technical paths for leaders in their organizations that don’t want to become people managers, nor should they be. Leaders can still be leaders and not have any direct reports.

To have these various experts or technical leadership paths, companies need a way to track and be transparent about what those paths look like. At Traction on Demand, we created and continue to build on paths that are housed in Salesforce. These paths contain domain-specific knowledge, on the job experience, certifications, external thought leadership etc.

Take a look at a quick video clip showing an example path for our Field Services Subject Matter Expert Path:

4. Connecting Humanity With Activity

Another way Traction on Demand is promoting employee engagement, is by putting the power into our peoples’ hands – both literally and figuratively.

That’s the thinking behind Traction Pulse – our engaging data collection platform that captures our team members’ sentiment in real-time. It’s a great way for our managers to keep their remote teams engaged, a convenient means for teams to feel connected, and an unbelievable resource for identifying blockers that could be hampering productivity.

With the current shift towards remote work, our people are taking more ownership of their own identity, and better investing in their own mental happiness. By unlocking their true potential and logging their sentiment, our teams are gaining a clear understanding of how they can make their individual tomorrows better.

And that’s something we’re all feeling good about.


With workforces being more distributed by the day, engaging your teams effectively is more important than ever before. Let us help you develop the solutions to make employee engagement a highlight of your organization.

Talk to one of our engagement specialists today.

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