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How to build a successful Salesforce Admin career

by | Mar 2, 2022

In the last 12 months, nearly three million jobs were posted that required Salesforce training and experience. Salesforce is one of the world’s leading cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) software platforms. Over 150,000 companies across every industry use Salesforce to track interactions with customers, monitor sales, streamline business processes, and generate important business reports.

A Salesforce admin career path is ideal for individuals who want to pursue a high-demand digital skills career that offers a competitive salary and abundant opportunities for career progression. This article takes a closer look at the career path and salary outlook for individuals interested in launching and growing a successful Salesforce admin career.

Why get a job as a Salesforce Admin?

In the coming years, the demand for professionals with Salesforce training and expertise will continue to increase as more companies switch to cloud-based computing technology like Salesforce. Roles requiring Salesforce admin skills are projected to grow by over 30% in the next ten years.

Not only do companies need qualified applicants to fill Salesforce administrator jobs, but there are also a few additional reasons why professionals are deciding to pursue a Salesforce admin career:

  • The cloud-based computing software economy is booming. Analysts forecast that by 2026, the use of Salesforce and its ecosystem will generate new revenues for its customers of up to $1.56 trillion worldwide. This spike in revenue is expected to create millions of new jobs as more companies utilize cloud-based computing software programs to run their businesses.   

  • Qualified candidates are in a position of power. Simply put, there are not enough qualified applicants to meet the increase in demand for skilled Salesforce administrators. As a result, candidates for Salesforce admin jobs can use this to their advantage during the job application and salary negotiation process. Applicants can choose from a wide range of job openings, select the company or position that fits their career goals, and negotiate a good salary.

  • Salesforce roles offer competitive salaries. Platforms like Salesforce play a vital role in any thriving business’s daily function and success. Because of this, professionals who play a role in helping platforms like Salesforce function correctly and efficiently receive generous compensation.

  • The Salesforce admin career path offers career progression opportunities. Once you’ve gained the necessary skills and training to succeed in an entry-level Salesforce admin position, you will have ample opportunities to gain additional skills and experience to progress along the Salesforce admin career path or pursue other careers within the Salesforce ecosystem.

Is a Salesforce Administrator Career right for you? Find out more in this video

What is the career path of a Salesforce admin?

A Salesforce Administrator plays a critical role in the success of any Salesforce ecosystem. They enable users to get the most out of the Salesforce platform by bridging the gap between a business’s unique needs and the technology’s capabilities. In doing this, the administrator can configure and manage the platform’s tools to improve its function and efficiency for any business type or industry.

Those interested in pursuing a Salesforce admin career path do not need a technical background, degree, or previous knowledge of Salesforce to start their journey. In addition to free resources like the Salesforce online training platform Trailhead, individuals can begin their career by enrolling in online certificate programs like the Salesforce Administrator Career Certificate offered by the Harvard Division of Continuing Education Professional Development programs. This online program gives students the knowledge and hands-on support they need to prepare for the Salesforce admin certification exam and launch their Salesforce admin career. After passing the exam, students will receive a certificate that verifies that they have the skills and experience necessary to succeed as a Salesforce Administrator.

Under the Salesforce Administrator role, there are five levels of credentials: Administrator, Advanced Administrator, CPQ Specialist, Marketing Cloud Administrator, and Platform App Builder. The information below focuses specifically on the role of Administrator and Advanced Administrator. Both the Administrator and Advanced Administrator credentials concentrate on the applied administrative features of the platform, such as user management, customization of the platform, data management, reporting, and more. To learn more about the other three Administrator credentials, click here.

Entry-level jobs

The Salesforce Administrator role is an excellent starting point for anyone interested in beginning a career within the Salesforce ecosystem. This role is typically an entry-level position for individuals who have experience with Salesforce and have earned a Salesforce Administrator credential.

The duties and responsibilities of a Salesforce admin include:

Reports and Dashboards

Salesforce dashboards allow users to view essential data in charts, gauges, tables, and metrics. The administrator is responsible for building personalized dashboards using custom reports. 

Contact Management

The management of new leads and existing contacts within Salesforce is a daily task for administrators. The administrator uses the data loader feature to import, update, export, and delete Salesforce accounts. They may also be responsible for developing standard operating procedures to streamline and automate portions of this process.

User Management

The administrator is responsible for creating and managing each user account in Salesforce. This duty requires knowledge and understanding of Salesforce permission sets (i.e., the settings and permissions that give each user access to various tools and functions within the platform). An administrator can add new users, modify existing user accounts, update permission settings, and restrict or open access to specific data on the platform.

Data Management

Salesforce gives companies the ability to keep and maintain a wide range of valuable data about their accounts and customers. The administrator uses data modeling to interpret the data and create easy-to-read reports for their team. With the use of custom objects and fields, an administrator can further customize the company’s reporting capabilities. 

Salesforce Platform App Builder

Using the Salesforce Lightning App Builder, an administrator can build low-code apps and custom pages to leverage the Salesforce ecosystem to meet the needs of a company and its customers.

In addition to the administrative roles outlined above, an administrator also supports the company in building workflows, streamlining sales processes, and improving customer success. A Salesforce Administrator must also possess a wide range of non-technical business skills to solve user problems in real-time, communicate essential account details to key stakeholders, and increase productivity across the platform.

Once a professional has gained experience working as an administrator and mastering the platform’s functions, there are opportunities to advance along the Salesforce Administrator career path by pursuing an Advanced Administrator role.

Salesforce Advanced Administrator

The Advanced Administrator role is the next step on the career path of a Salesforce Administrator. This role is designed for individuals who want to build on their foundational knowledge of the platform to develop and master advanced Salesforce features and functionality. To qualify for an Advanced Administrator position, applicants must have a Salesforce Administrator credential and a Salesforce Advanced Administrator credential.

In addition to mastering the fundamental administrative functions of a Salesforce administrator role, a Salesforce Advanced Administrator must have advanced knowledge in seven additional core topic areas of the platform:  

  1. Security and Access
  2. Object and Applications
  3. Auditing and Monitoring
  4. Cloud Applications
  5. Data and Analytics Management
  6. Environment Management and Deployment
  7. Process Automation

The Advanced Administrator certification process helps admins advance their knowledge of the platform, compete for higher-paid positions, and assist companies in solving various business problems by deploying advanced features or functions within the platform.

The Salesforce Administrator is a great place to begin a career within the Salesforce ecosystem. Not only is this a high-valued role within hundreds of organizations, but it’s also a great jumping-off point for anyone who wants to pursue other careers within the Salesforce ecosystem. Want to learn more about the different career paths people have taken with Salesforce and how they landed a job? Watch this webinar with Salesforce admin panelists here.

What is the average Salesforce Admin salary?

The average salary of a Certified Salesforce Administrator is $84,000/year. However, salaries can range from $25,000 – $125,000 depending on company size, location, and individual experience. On average, Salesforce Administrators with five or more years of experience can expect to earn $87,000/year.

Launching your Salesforce Admin career with Pathstream

The first step to launching your Salesforce admin career is learning how to use the platform. Through Pathstream’s Salesforce Administrator Career Certificate program, students can gain the fundamental knowledge and skills needed to pass the Salesforce Administrator exam and launch their career as a Salesforce Administrator.

This 18-week online certificate program is for busy professionals who want a personalized yet flexible approach to career development. This instructor-led program will teach you Salesforce administrative skills directly inside the platform and help you master in-demand tools like the Salesforce Sales and Salesforce Service Cloud. Most importantly, once you’ve passed the Salesforce administrator exam, Pathstream will help you improve your resume, prep for interviews, and connect you with job opportunities to ensure that you start advancing your career right away. Learn more about getting started as a Salesforce admin with Pathstream here.  

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