Salesforce admins are one of the most in-demand jobs in the Salesforce ecosystem. As an admin, you hold a lot of important responsibilities, including platform maintenance such as fixing bugs, creating reports, and training users.
With all of that responsibility, you want to make sure you are set up for success in your role. When interviewing for a new admin position, you have the opportunity to find out more about the company and role you might step into. Here's a list of top questions you can ask a potential employer in your next interview, grouped by topic, as well as what to listen for in their answers (Note that I didn't include additional context for every question).
Role and responsibilities
1. Will the previous admin help with my onboarding process (if still with the company)?
Even if this isn’t your first Salesforce admin job, every company’s Salesforce environment is unique. Try and get a sense of how much support you'll have in your first few weeks or months on the job, including what the onboarding process looks like.
2. Is the admin expected to implement new business processes, communicate them, and train?
3. Do you have a business analyst to help the admin?
Salesforce business analysts often work closely with admins, helping companies improve processes and efficiency in Salesforce by eliciting, documenting, and analyzing requirements around business challenges.
If a company doesn’t have a dedicated business analyst, they may ask the admin to take on business analysis as a job function. It's good to have an idea of whether or not these responsibilities will fall to you before taking the job.
4. Are you using any consultants or SI partners to help manage Salesforce?
Salesforce Consultants or System Integrators (SIs) can be valuable resources for a Salesforce admin, especially if the admin and their team takes on a major project in Salesforce. Once you start the role, you'll just want to make sure any outside partners who have access to your Salesforce org are trustworthy and knowledgeable.
Vision and strategy
5. What does your roadmap for Salesforce look like right now?
6. What are the top projects/priorities you are looking for this position to tackle in the next year?
Salesforce enables companies to grow their business through large-scale, transformational projects. This can include implementing a new org for a new business division, migrating data from one org to another, and integrating third-party applications, to name a few.
Try and find out if any of these initiatives are on the horizon for the company you are interviewing for, and what your role would be in helping manage them.
7. What is user adoption like within Salesforce?
If the organization hasn’t already bought into using Salesforce, boosting adoption can be a big part of the role. Ask your interviewer what they think the obstacles are. You can also ask what kind of training and enablement processes they have in place for new users.
8. How often do you deploy changes?
9. Who is the decision maker when it comes to Salesforce changes?
10. Do you have a change management program in place?
A couple of key admin responsibilities are to manage change requests from users, and proactively make changes to Salesforce based on business needs. Without a process in place, change management can be very time-consuming and inefficient. Try to find out the basics of their change management process.
11. Who does the Salesforce technical team comprise of?
12. Who does the Salesforce admin report to?
Depending on the size and structure of the company, the Salesforce admin role can sit in marketing, sales, or IT. Regardless who the admin reports to, find out what team the role is on and who is on it. You can also ask what communication is like between the company's business teams using Salesforce, since it will be important to have a key contact in each.
Career opportunities and growth
13. Will you cover the cost of certificates/training?
14. What are your KPIs for this role and progression/reward structure?
It’s a best practice for Salesforce admins to get certified. In addition to enhancing your knowledge of the platform, it also opens you up to a higher salary. Find out if the employer will cover the cost of the certification and/or provide PTO while you study and take the exam.
Also, like with any job, get a sense of the opportunity for career progression possibilities in the role. Salesforce offers many career paths for admins, including business analyst, developer, and many others.
15. What does your tech stack look like?
Try and get a sense of what integrations are already in place with Salesforce. This will give you an overview of the technical landscape and what other systems you might need to be familiar with.
16. Are you on Lightning? If not, what is your migration plan?
Most orgs have transitioned to Lightning already, which is Salesforce’s latest version of their platform that they introduced in 2019. If their company is still using Classic, you'll likely be in charge of migrating to Lightning, which can be a complex project.
17. What is your org’s score?
A quick way to gauge what challenges a Salesforce org has is its health score. While there may be other factors to consider, an org’s health score is an easy way to benchmark the condition of the org you may soon be managing.
18. What is your permission structure like?
19. How many people have admin rights?
While your interviewer might not be comfortable divulging this information, it would be wise to find out what you’re getting into. Custom profiles with “Modify All Data'' permissions can be extremely risky and can open the door to user-inflicted data loss and corruption. Additionally, having multiple “System Admin” profiles could invoke ungoverned changes that will make your Salesforce data difficult to manage.
20. What is your backup strategy for Salesforce?
Speaking of data loss, Salesforce admins are usually the ones on the hook when there is any sort of data loss or corruption. Having a backup strategy in place can save an admin hours, days, or even weeks recovering from such an incident. At Own, many of our customers tell us that when looking for their next admin role, having a backup and recovery solution was a non-negotiable requirement of their next employer.
Own: Every admin's secret weapon
If you’re an admin looking to protect your new company’s Salesforce org, Own (formerly OwnBackup) can help. As the #1 backup and restore independent software vendor (ISV) on the Salesforce AppExchange, we provide automated backups and rapid recovery of SaaS data.