Enhancing your Managed Services experience - Davanti NOW
02nd November 2020
Author Thomas Fursdon
Introducing our new Managed Services portal, your go-to place for all things Davanti and Salesforce.
Davanti’s Managed Services offering
We have two practices that specialise in Salesforce solutions at Davanti: Business Applications and Managed Services.
Our Business Applications practice delivers exceptional Salesforce solutions on a project or engagement basis, which would typically be a concerted effort focussed on delivering to specific outcomes.
Our Managed Services team works slightly differently through service agreements that typically span longer periods of time and support BAU (Business As Usual) enhancements, or help resolve any issues that may arise within our clients’ Salesforce environments. This enables our clients’ teams to quickly scale up and down depending on the level of support required.
What is Davanti NOW?
Davanti NOW is the name we’ve given to our new self-service portal, which is available to all our Managed Services clients.
It allows you to log in and see an overview of your service requests, log new service requests with the team and view their progress, and see how many service hours you have used relative to your monthly and quarterly allocations.
We’ll be expanding on the portal’s capability over the coming months to make it a one stop shop for all things Davanti and Salesforce, so that you’re kept up to date with the latest information in a way that’s easy to access and understand.
At Davanti, we use Salesforce internally and this now includes Davanti NOW. Built entirely on the Salesforce Lightning platform, Davanti NOW is a Salesforce Customer Community that exposes Case data to users.
The process of logging a new service request is accomplished through Flows, which allows easy configuration of screens and fields to gather the right information to resolve service requests as quickly as possible.
“I really like the inclusion of the definition of severity when creating an “Issue” service request.”
The Flow can be launched from anywhere within Davanti NOW by clicking the ‘Create service request’ button at the top of the page.
Salesforce Communities allow for additional customisation though custom styling, which we’ve used to achieve a modern website look and feel, and to better align the community theme with the main Davanti website.
How we made Davanti NOW a reality
We approached the Davanti NOW project as we would a project for one of our clients. As described above, the need for better reporting capabilities was identified and was the main driver for the project, which prompted further thought and analysis. A portal was available previously, but functionality was limited with no real overview of how support hours were being used and a case logging process that did not guide users to supply all the necessary information required to easily resolve issues.
Analysis and design
At Davanti, we believe strongly in human-centred design. Assessing how real people might use the tools we build is important to us and taking the time to design and prototype up front will often produce better outcomes and reduce rework later. Keeping with this philosophy, we engaged our very own Design & Experience team who interviewed Managed Services clients and developed and iterated wireframes with client feedback.
“I love the new look and feel!”
We also worked closely with our Managed Services consultants to figure out which questions they were asked most frequently by clients they’ve been working with, and to get an idea of what kinds of information would make their work faster if it were available before working on any given service request.
Davanti’s Design & Experience team were able to incorporate those insights, then build the wireframes to support their findings and iterate based on feedback. The original design looked something like this:
Using Salesforce to deliver on design concepts
While almost anything is possible given enough time and money, one of the advantages of building on the Salesforce platform is the ability to quickly configure out of the box functionality to speed up delivery timeframes.
The wireframe that was put together is platform agnostic and doesn’t quite line up exactly with any of the standard Salesforce Customer Community themes. To deliver on a minimum viable product, we took the key elements of the wireframe, then adapted them into something that would work in Salesforce with as little customisation as possible while still accomplishing core functionality and feeling like a modern website experience.
Some custom code was necessary and Lightning components were built to display modern, interactive charts and dashboards that fit with Davanti styling.
“The homepage is fantastic, with the dashboard components front and centre.”
“I love being able to filter by status!”
Salesforce communities are responsive, so we made sure that any custom functionality would also work well on mobile devices. Davanti NOW can be used on the move!
We added style overrides to standard community pages so that they will look and feel like a Davanti experience, without the need for building custom functionality from scratch. This also enables us to quickly change the layouts of pages quickly through Salesforce configuration, without the need for a developer while preserving the same look and feel.
Proving the solution
Once built, Davanti NOW was tested thoroughly by Davanti’s Managed Services team before being made available to a small group of pilot users.
The pilot users were able to start using the portal to log new service requests immediately and provided us with valuable, real user feedback that we used to improve the user experience before releasing Davanti NOW to all of our managed services clients.
Currently, Davanti NOW is still in its minimum viable product state and we have lots of ideas to enhance it over time.
First up, we’re looking at improving reporting capabilities by taking a snapshot of key metrics each month, then using a Conga solution to generate rich report documents that can be downloaded and supplied to other stakeholders within your business.
After that, the solution will be expanded to provide access to key Salesforce update information that we think our Managed Services clients should be aware of.
Whether you’re interested in leveraging Salesforce Communities for your own customers or in making the most of your Salesforce environment through support from our Managed Services team (which includes access to Davanti NOW), we’d love to hear from you! Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thomas is one of Davanti’s Manager Consultants. He leads the delivery of projects as part of Davanti’s Business Applications team, with a current focus on the Financial Services sector.