Op-Ed: Think like a Game-Tutorial

Target Group: Admins
Complexity: Simple

6 months of sweat and tears but you made it. You got the project life in time and budget. UAT passed with flying colors and power Users are excited.

First User feedback is trickling in, it’s not great. What could have happened?

Let’s follow the default User experience of a Salesforce onboarding:

After I log in I’m greeted with a Home-Page with a dashboard full of empty reports, an empty list of tasks, and some strange “Lead Component” I don’t understand.

In my navigation I’ve 10 tabs, none of them make any sense to me as a new User. All I want is to qualify for some Leads.

The trainer will say something like: “Ignore all of that for now, we will talk about that later. For today we only focus on the Lead tab.”

And on the Lead tab, the same happens. An empty Lead list, with a bunch of cryptic buttons.

“Ignore the buttons, for now, click New Lead, and let’s create a Test Lead together.” 

Please make sure you create the Lead exactly as I show, but in the future, you don’t need to create Leads yourself, you will just pick a Lead from the list.”

Total time spent: 15 Minutes
Feeling: Overwhelmed
Things learned: Nothing


I did it exactly like that many times but I realized, that’s as bad as it can be, the new User is completely overwhelmed and under-impressed.

While there’s a lot of information, the User learned nothing of value for her. She spent 15 minutes trying to understand and all she was told:  “None of that matters to reach your goals.”

Most Users have been lost by now, no matter how good your solution is, it’s an uphill battle from here.


Ask yourself: What should the first 5 minutes for a new User look like? How can I help the User to have a feeling of success within the first 5 minutes?

I think game tutorials do a great job here.

(Good) Game Tutorials start with a limited set of features and make sure you have your first success within minutes.

In our Salesforce world I’d do it the following way:

The Login screen is already branded to the company, MyDomain makes that super easy.

After Login I’m immediately at the Lead List. The Lead List is filled with Demo Leads that feel real. The ListView has no Buttons. 

Selecting a Lead shows me a small subset of Fields and only one! action/button I can do next. 

A small Rich-Text field highlights that action even more. Clicking that action lets me log a call. The “Log A Call” screen has even an example text in it. All I’ve to do is click Save.

Clicking Save showers me with Confetti.

Total time spent: 5 Minutes
Feeling: Fabulous
Things learned: Log a Call

Slowly I enable more and more features for that Usergroup by adding Permission sets. Whenever they mastered a functionality, the next functionality is enabled. There’s always only one new mechanic available at a time.

I know, this takes quite some effort to plan, build and pull off but I’m sure: Your Users will love it.