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Three must-follow career tips for Salesforce beginners

Three must-follow career tips for Salesforce beginners

Career adviceSalesforceCareer startersIndependent professionals

If you carefully and strategically map out your Salesforce career path, it won’t take long to rise up the ranks, says Edgar Santos from K2.

His own career is a case in point. Edgar transitioned into a Salesforce role just five years ago and is now the IT Manager for Managed Solutions and M&A Strategy at K2.

Edgar, who was previously a Service Cloud Consultant at K2, reveals how he became successful in Salesforce and offers three valuable career tips for newcomers to the ecosystem.

Please tell us about your background.

I have an MBA in Supply Chain Management. Since 2017, I’ve challenged myself in this amazing and beautiful area called IT, especially working with Salesforce and the support process, or application management service (AMS).

You previously worked in freight logistics. How did that job influence the way you think about business challenges?

I believe that my previous experience gave me an important understanding of processes, especially in understanding the value that every solution must deliver.

You then got a job via K2 doing implementation in the transport sector. How did that role come about?

I was looking for an opportunity to work on an IT project, and I’d already submitted my resume on the K2 website. One day, a commercial manager from K2’s Brazil office invited me to take on a position for an important client here, being responsible for a transportation management system (TMS) implementation. I started as a business analyst and finished as the project manager!

What did you learn from that role that helped shape the rest of your career?

Basically everything! I learned more about how the discovery process really works, and I put into practice all my knowledge about lean process management. But most importantly, I learned a lot of new knowledge from the amazing people I worked with. And with help from K2 University, I started to participate in Salesforce courses.

In 2019, you moved into a Salesforce career. How did you do this, and why Salesforce?

K2 helped me by introducing me to the IT manager of one of K2’s major clients, which gave me an opportunity to work in their Salesforce practice. I chose Salesforce because it offers an incredible learning ecosystem. I began my studies on Trailhead and then took a K2 University course, which prepared me and gave me the confidence to enter the Salesforce world.

Do people need to know how to code to start a Salesforce career?

No! Coding is only one of the Salesforce roles that you can choose. Salesforce is huge and normally you’ll find more opportunities in other strategic jobs, such as business analysis, UX/UX etc.

What was your first Salesforce certification? And what’s your advice for anyone studying for a Salesforce certification exam?

Administrator was my first one. I studied from Focus on Force material and via Trailhead. I strongly recommend having a well-structured certification learning plan: complete the relevant Trailhead modules, review Focus on Force exams and study guides, and engage with the incredible Salesforce community ecosystem where you can get all kinds of tips to help you with the exam.

You moved to K2 in 2020 as a full-time employee and Salesforce specialist. What made you join?

I think that I always saw myself as a future K2 employee! All the career challenges that I faced worked as motivators that showed me I could be a very valuable asset here. The opportunity to be part of this amazing team has now changed my life. Thank you to everyone who’s helped me at K2!

What do you do in your current role? And what do you like best about the job?

Essentially my role at K2 is exactly what I’ve been since the beginning of my career: I’m a facilitator. My job gives me an opportunity to establish contacts with all K2 offices around the world, helping with specific demands and learning from a very good senior team. The best thing about working here is that there are no walls! You can talk with everybody, ask questions, and give suggestions to anyone in the company, from beginners to senior leadership, including the CEO.

How important are soft skills for success in Salesforce?

They’re critical – a Salesforce job is 50% technical, while 50% depends on your soft skills, including humility, communication, emotional intelligence, patience, perseverance, faith, responsibility, commitment and teamwork.

What are some Salesforce career lessons that you’ve learned? 

1) Do in-depth research about Salesforce. I recommend applying the 5W2H framework to understand, first of all, what Salesforce does and which kinds of roles are on offer.

2) Plan your career and your studies. Where do you want to be in the next five years in the Salesforce ecosystem?

3) Be honest with yourself. Salesforce isn’t a 100-meter sprint; it’s a marathon! Understand that you will always be studying something new. Enjoy the continuous learning process.

Want to launch your own Salesforce career? Find out more about K2 University’s wide range of official Salesforce courses, designed with graduates in mind.

Contact us today.

Simon Mortlock, Head of content

Simon Mortlock, a seasoned writer and editor, is an expert in producing content across diverse digital channels. Having joined K2 in 2023, he brings over a decade of specialized experience covering talent-related subjects.

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