As digital transformation sweeps across practically every industry in the world, South African businesses are clamouring for people with experience in Salesforce, one of the world’s most popular customer relationship management (CRM) platforms.
While Salesforce is often marketed as a relatively low-code environment that allows business users to make changes easily, it is a system that allows for highly complex and sophisticated implementations that require highly trained, hard-core developers, says Dave Reynders, the CTO of alternative lender Merchant Capital.
Salesforce has made significant inroads into the financial sector in particular in recent years, with most major banks rolling out massive implementations on the platform. The problem is that the pool of highly capable Salesforce developers and technologists is small, and the big players – both locally and globally – are using their financial muscle to hoover up most of the available talent out there.
“If you’re a Salesforce developer, you’ve never been more in demand. People used to think that if you wanted to be a hardcore developer, you’d go out and swing big with Java or C or Python. Now we’re starting to see super-smart Salesforce developers, who would have been super-smart Java developers in another life, working on the very cutting edge of what is possible on this platform,” says Reynders.
This demand for Salesforce skills comes at a time when record numbers of companies are hiring software developers, with salaries rising sharply, according to recruiter OfferZen’s State of the Software Developer Nation Report for 2022. FinTech and Cloud Technology are still the best paying industries for South African developers.
“More and more financial services companies are using Salesforce for incredibly complex applications that can’t be fixed with ‘drag and drop’. At Merchant Capital, we’re absolutely pushing the limits of the platform in areas like performance capability, data processing and complexity. We’re managing common code bases across multiple environments, while still allowing for intense customisations in each environment to meet our partners’ and clients’ needs.”
The shortage of skills remains the big bottleneck that’s preventing Salesforce from becoming even more dominant across most industries.
“It’s a relatively easy platform to learn (but hard to master), with numerous courses and certifications available. There is also a range of roles that are in demand, from Salesforce Administrators and consultants to more technical roles like developers and technical architects.”
“We spend a lot of time thinking about how to make Merchant Capital a great place to further a SalesForce career. We offer exposure to most of the SalesForce disciplines like administration, analysis, development, and architecture. We fund ongoing certification exams and encourage people to stay connected with other salesforce professionals via the regular networking opportunities SalesForce offer. Also, we are a fun place to work where constant innovation and pushing the boundaries get us up in the morning – but that applies to more than just salesforce professionals.” says Reynders with a smile.
By Staff Writer.