Scaling Salesforce as You Grow, Part 2 [Tech Tips]

Scaling Salesforce as You Grow

In the first post of this series, I covered considerations for approaches to the Owner field in Salesforce.com to ensure your organization can scale its use of Salesforce.com in the future. Today, let’s talk about another topic.

Multi-Select Picklists

Multi-Select Picklists are intended to allow Salesforce.com users to quickly grab multiple values of record categorization and apply them simultaneously to the same person or thing. They look pretty, and can quickly replace massive checkbox grids or a series of single-select picklists.  My issues with them run deep and strong, especially with their limited ability to be easily referenced in Salesforce.com automation processes such as workflows and formulas (though this has improved over time), as well as how they are handled in Salesforce.com reporting, which is literally as a series of text-only values in some cases.

For these reasons, I always ask two questions when considering multi-select picklists:

  • Are they a primary or secondary differentiator of the values contained within them?
  • Do you simply need to see the information in these picklists on a record, or actually build reports and Salesforce.com automation based on it?

I prefer to use multi-select picklists to further define a single-select picklist (or checkbox) value, which preserves some of the best of both worlds: high-level definition for reporting and ease of automation, with additional granularity applied at a lower level.

How do you use the Multi-Select Picklists in Salesforce? Let us know in the comments below.

Stay tuned to The Connected Cause for the next post in this series covering Picklist Value Collisions.

Don’t miss Part 1 of this series that discusses the Salesforce Owner Field.

Tracy Kronzak

About Tracy Kronzak

Tracy is a CRM implementation strategy, change management, and organizational leadership and technology adoption expert. She has more than 15 years of experience in the nonprofit sector and its related industries, including philanthropy, activism, research, technology management, and Salesforce CRM platform consulting. She holds a Master of Public Administration degree from New York University, and is a Salesforce.com Certified Administrator and Developer. Tracy frequently presents on CRM selection/implementation and technology strategy, and is a proud member of the NTEN Community, serving in an advisory capacity to the NTC and Leading Change conferences. In August 2014, Tracy was recognized by the Salesforce Foundation as one of 30 Community Heroes for her contributions to the advancement of nonprofits using Salesforce.com. In her free time, she is a ceramic artist and potter, avid bicyclist, and burgeoning markswoman.

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