- LIGHTNING WILL BE AT PARITY WITH CLASSIC IN THE NEXT FEW MONTHS
With the Winter ’17 release, Lightning will be at virtual parity with Classic, with the exception of a few features including the product selector, lead-conversion enhancements, collaborative forecasting and some reporting features. (If you don’t use these features, you can migrate now.)
Once these key features are in place, there will be no reason to put off making the switch to Lightning. By the Spring 2017 release (which should happen in February), every organization that actively uses Salesforce on a day-to-day basis should be using Lightning. Which means you’ve got about three to four months before there’s absolutely no excuse to migrate.
That’s not a lot of time—most organizations should start thinking about Lightning migration today. That’s a very different takeaway from Dreamforce last year, where it was unclear if Lightning was ready at all. Now, with the new UI updates, Salesforce has made it clear that the focus of all product roadmaps is Lighting parity with Classic.
- EXPECT MOST NEW FEATURES TO BE LIGHTING-ONLY
Every new feature exposed to the UI will primary be available in Lightning only (with the exception of a small handful because they’re platform features, not UI features). These include Gmail integrations, calendars, record productivity tools, dynamic report filters, dashboard enhancements, most Einstein features, and the list goes on.
If you don’t decide to start working on your Lighting rollout now—which many people have not done—you’re going to be looking at software that will not be upgraded, meaning your company will be paying for a legacy application which is no longer upgradeable.
- SENIOR EXECUTIVES WILL QUESTION YOUR DECISION NOT TO MOVE TO LIGHTNING
If you value Salesforce as a fundamental tool for your business, you need to upgrade to Lightning or you will be left behind. And that may not sit well with your senior executives. As early as a year ago, I was responding to questions from Sales Ops Managers asking “Should we move to Lightning?” Those questions came up time and time again because the CEOs were asking their Sales Ops Managers about Lightning. If you don’t make the move, you’ll eventually have to explain this decision to your bosses. With lightning at feature parity, the only excuse you’ll have is that you didn’t have the time. That’s not going to be acceptable. And that’s not a prudent technological decision, either.
TO SUM UP…
My biggest takeaway from Dreamforce is that True to the Core now equals Lightning (see part 1 of my post if you missed it). The idea that Lightning will die is fundamentally not true. It will happen, and it must happen. There were lots of challenges in Lightning’s first year. Some might even say it failed. There was a ton of discussion about its readiness and I’ve talked to many people in the field who basically blew it off because it wasn’t ready. All that has changed: Lightning is ready and you’d better start figuring out how to use it.
So get a sandbox going, start doing regression testing and end-to-end testing and prepare a training plan, because it’s going to take a few months. And you need to be ready.