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Begin Your Customer Service Journey

Learning Objectives

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:
  • Describe what Service Cloud is.
  • Describe key benefits of the Lightning Service Console.
  • Create and update a customer case.

Why Care About Customer Service

Like most companies, Ursa Major Solar is only as good as its customer service. This Southwest-based supplier of solar energy components is growing from a local player to a regional one, and they recently opened a second distribution center in a neighboring state. But solar energy customers have options. And if they don’t get the service they want, they can go elsewhere. Not only that, they can also influence their circle of friends, family, coworkers, and even social media followers to go elsewhere.

The CEO of Ursa Major Solar, Sita Nagappan-Alvarez, has heard that her company is putting customers through a frustrating service circus:

  • Alicia emailed support three times, but never received a response.
  • Greg phoned the company with a quick question, but he was put on hold for 50 minutes.
  • Colleen contacted Ursa Major Solar on social media, but her post was ignored and it made her feel alone, unliked, and unimportant.

Sita is worried that if her company gets a reputation as a service circus, company growth will vanish. She doesn’t want any customers to walk away, thinking Ursa Major Solar is a bunch of clowns.

A graphic of Sita standing on stage before the logo of Ursa Major Solar.

To make matters worse, Sita recently read that 91% of customers say they’re more likely to make another purchase when service is good.

Sita sees how service can have the largest impact on Ursa Major Solar’s brand. Today’s hyper-connected world has put new expectations on service. Customers want positive, personal experiences wherever they’re engaged: in-store, online, from email, mobile devices, and more. Sita envisions a new service model for her company. One where customers can contact her team from any device or communications channel and receive helpful interactions that build loyal relationships and drive future sales.

To help you with your service journey, we follow Ursa Major Solar through their service adventure. We watch this fast-growing renewable energy company of 200 employees figure out what they can do with Service Cloud to make their customers loyal and support agents happy.

What Is Service Cloud?

Sita and her COO, co-founder, and husband, Roberto, have spent the last 20 years of their lives creating Ursa Major Solar. They know they need to improve the company’s customer service, but they don’t have time to research or experiment with new technology. Roberto knows a little about Salesforce since his sales teams use it. He asks, “What is Service Cloud?”

Service Cloud is an easy-to-use customer service application that can help you provide and track excellent service. It keeps your customers happy and your support team sane, whether your customers contact you by email, phone, social media, or other channels from desktops, mobile devices, or apps.

A graphic of various service channels for customers.

You can get started with Service Cloud quickly—with clicks, not code.

Here’s how it works.

Service Console
At the heart of Service Cloud is the Service Console. The console is a help desk that lets anyone on your service team (or anyone at your company) see a personalized view of each customer and their case.

Case Management
A case is a customizable record in Salesforce that tracks and describes a customer issue, complaint, request—you name it. All unifying information about a customer is stored on a case, including account, contact, product, and history data so that anyone on your service team can jump in to help.

Channels & Digital Engagement
Whether the case arrived by email, phone call, web chat, social media, or text message, a support agent can quickly respond to it from the console. Agents can track any useful information and engage with customers on their favorite channels, devices, or apps to provide a great service experience.

Automatic Workflows
When a case arrives, its information is automatically assessed and routed to the right people to match any custom workflows set up for your team. Notifications keep your service team on track before they miss any key items, required responses, or service agreements.

Knowledge Base
Find, share, and store articles or answers related to cases to speed up service. Or, let customers find answers on their own from your self-service help centers or portals.

Instant Metrics
Information about cases is available in service metrics to gauge your business’s response times, resolution times, and overall service health. Use data to identify strengths and gaps; and decide how to deliver better, faster service.

Mobile & Field Service Ready
Since Service Cloud is part of the Salesforce platform, all of your business data, customized processes, and unique workflows come together in one simple place. You can even see it all on your mobile phone or tablet out in the field.

Service for Everyone
Salesforce is committed to providing accessible products for all individuals — including your service team members working with assistive technology, such as speech recognition software and screen readers. Accessibility isn’t a special feature; it’s universally designed into features for Service Cloud.

Automatic Updates for the Future
With each Salesforce release, you automatically get the latest technologies to position your support team for the future and the Fourth Industrial Revolution, including AI for predictive service. And with AppExchange—a marketplace where you can buy or find free Salesforce applications—you can choose from a variety of apps to help your team and customers.

To see how Service Cloud works, watch this video.

Note: If you don’t see the Service Console app in Lightning Experience in your Trailhead Playground (TP), create a new TP.

Sita likes how Service Cloud matches her vision of supporting customers from any device or channel to build loyal relationships. Roberto likes how a single app on the Salesforce platform they already use keeps customer information in one place. Service Cloud looks like it can put an end to their service circus.

Benefits of the Service Console

Roberto likes the idea of a help desk. No more random customer emails lost in an inbox. No more sticky notes about customer calls misplaced on monitors. Roberto asks, “So what does this console actually do for me?” Let’s look at the console and how it makes Service Cloud simple.

A Lighting Service Console with callouts to its key features listed below.

Benefit Description
(1) Split views From the start, you can see a list of cases alongside your workspace to quickly work through incoming customer issues.
(2) Related record and related list components Right out of the box, you can see information related to a customer to get a well-rounded picture of their issue and who they are. Jump to lists of similar cases, and work off lists to keep your cases organized.
(3) Highlights panel component Without configuring a thing, spot exactly what you need front and center to respond to customers quickly.
(4) Compact case feed Understand case progression and case history at a glance with a news-like feed and preconfigured pages. Colorful icons help you distinguish between people and interactions instantly, and you can add a quick comment to help your customers or team.
(5) Knowledge component See suggested articles from your knowledge base to solve cases faster, search articles to find exactly what you need, and attach common solutions from similar cases. (You must enable Lightning Knowledge first.)
(6) Preconfigured utility bar Increase productivity with tools, such as Notes to jot down things, or History to go back to recently viewed records.

Everything you need to quickly respond to customers is preconfigured for you in the console. And with Service Cloud, you can expand your service tools and customizations as your team or company grows.

Tip: To increase user productivity in your console, consider installing In-App Guidance: Boost Service User Productivity in Lightning Experience. To learn more about this AppExchange package from Salesforce Labs, visit the User Engagement module on Trailhead.

Track Customer Issues in Salesforce

Sita and Roberto like what they’ve seen of Service Cloud. As decision makers, they want more than a demo. They want to track a customer issue, which is called a case in Salesforce, and test the console. Let’s join them in seeing how easy it is to create a case.

Jon Amos called to say: “Hey, I never got my solar panels.” Now let’s walk through the process of creating a case in the console for Jon’s issue. If you have a Trailhead Playground, follow along and enable Lightning Experience.

  1. Log in to your organization, and if you’re in Salesforce Classic, switch to Lightning Experience.

    The Switch to Lightning Experience option from your username in the toolbar.

  2. Click the Add icon (The Add icon in the toolbar.), then New Case.

    New Case selected from the Add icon.

  3. Search for Jon Amos as an existing contact. If you don’t see him, select New Contact to add Jon Amos, and save your changes.

  4. In Status, leave the value as New because it’s a brand-new case.

  5. In Subject, type Missing solar panels.

  6. In Description, type Solar panels for next week’s installation never arrived.

    A new case with contact, status, subject, and details added.

  7. Save your changes. That’s it! Now you or anyone on your team can work together to resolve the case quickly.

To update the case, or see who has commented on it, click the Cases tab and select the case.

The Cases tab with the new case highlighted.

You can also add your own comment to the case’s feed. Select Post, type what you want to say, then click Share.

The Post section of a case with words typed into it.

Based on what Sita and Roberto have seen, they think Service Cloud is a good customer support option for Ursa Major Solar. But they want another opinion. They’re interested in hearing what their rock star systems admin, Maria Jimenez, thinks.

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