Archives for November 2023

Meet Katie Villanueva, 10K’s New Salesforce Administrator

Today, we proudly announce that Katie Villanueva has joined our team as 10K’s first dedicated Salesforce Administrator for our internal org! 

Katie will be instrumental in supporting the initiatives that advance 10K’s mission: to help more customers and Salesforce experts gain the freedom to excel at the work they love. Her extensive Administrator experience and deep involvement in the Salesforce community make Katie an exciting addition to the 10K team. 

Read on to learn more about Katie, her vision for her new role, and how 10K’s on-demand model is helping Trailblazers across the ecosystem achieve their dreams. 

You’re 10K’s first dedicated Admin. What is your vision for the role, and what are you most excited to accomplish in your first year? 

My first year will be focused on growth and absorbing all of the processes, flows, pain points, and efficiencies within 10K’s platform. The more I understand how the business is set up from the inside out, the more I can flex my Admin muscle and accomplish what I came to do: 

  1. Optimize functionality
  2. Enhance operational efficiencies

Joining 10K, a company that is at the forefront of modern Salesforce consulting, is an awesome opportunity to learn from its team of Salesforce MVP Hall-of-Famers and community of elite Salesforce experts. I’m excited to help transform and carry out 10K’s vision for our internal platform into the future. 

10K’s on-demand consulting model is unique in our industry. Why do you believe in the model, and why do you think what we’re doing matters so much in the Salesforce ecosystem?

There are two layers to my answer. One: I love Salesforce. I love what it can do, I love building it, and I love how it solves business problems and provides a suite of services to provide a full 360 customer experience. I’ve seen how it can transform a company into a well-oiled machine. That’s why it makes me sad when I hear folks say they’ve tried Salesforce, but it didn’t work out, or when businesses get rid of Salesforce because they don’t know how to use it to its full potential. It’s important to me that we give customers an opportunity to evolve and enhance their businesses using Salesforce because everyone deserves a chance to be great at what they do. 

This takes me to the second part: The Trailblazer community. Everyone has hopes and dreams, and if being an independent consultant is the dream or facilitates the dream, then I want to help those people be successful. Everyone deserves happiness, and 10K helps people and businesses achieve their goals. Can it get any better than that? Everybody wins!

10K’s vision is to give people the freedom to excel at the work they love. How do you see yourself and your role in this vision?

Not only will I see the vision, I will embody it. I love to learn and grow and build, and now I get to do it all with an incredible company and people! As 10K’s Salesforce Administrator, I will be their fully dedicated expert to support and sustain the exciting growth we have ahead of us. It will be my responsibility to support an infrastructure that’s well-organized, responsive, and trustworthy. This will pave the way for 10K to create more opportunities for its growing community of Salesforce independent consultants and help more customers maximize their ROI. 

What is your favorite adventure?

In some ways, I feel like the best adventure is yet to come. I’m a Chicago girl who moved to Kentucky to be a farmer, graduated with a degree in radio, was a DJ for a time, and somehow ended up working in tech. Now, I live with my husband in a log cabin on 14 acres with three fainting goats, two dogs, and a garden we’re still trying to find time for. I got into Olympic weightlifting after a few years of CrossFit, am a yoga instructor, and have been rock climbing on and off for the last 20 years. My life has been incredibly unpredictable, but all in all, I’m happy with how it all turned out.

Why 2023 Salesforce Talent Demand Trends Hint at Technical Debt Risk

For the last six years, our team has studied Salesforce talent supply and demand trends that can help customers, hiring managers, and experts alike better understand the ever-evolving ecosystem and where it’s headed. This year, we uncovered compelling evidence that many Salesforce customers chose to rely heavily on Developer talent while deprioritizing Architect talent. Unfortunately, these trends may indicate that Salesforce customers are actively (or running the risk of) incurring costly technical debt. 

In this article, we’ll share what this year’s data shows about the demand for Salesforce Developers versus the demand for Technical and Solution Architects, and how the shift in priorities could result in excessive technical debt down the road. 

Demand for Salesforce Architects decreased the most across all roles in 2023 

While demand for Salesforce talent was down across all roles this year, demand for Solution Architects and Technical Architects declined the most. Demand for Technical Architects was down 55% YoY, followed closely by Solution Architect demand, down 54% YoY. 

Why are organizations relying less on Salesforce Architects?

There are a few potential reasons why demand for Architects went down this year. Salesforce Architect roles are highly specialized and sometimes hard to fill—they’re also not cheap. With the economic factors at play this year (e.g., inflation, rising interest rates, layoffs, budget cuts, etc.), many organizations have had to scale back hiring and tighten their budgets.

It makes sense that Architect demand would decrease so drastically. According to the latest research from Mason Frank, Technical Architects are the highest-paid (non-executive) Salesforce professionals in the United States. Orgs on a tight budget may find it harder to justify bringing an architect onto their team. 

It’s also possible that the dip in demand for Architects could be partly due to the fact that hiring (and retaining) a full-time Salesforce Architect is like finding a needle in a haystack. While Solution Architect and Technical Architect supply actually increased this year, each role still makes up just 1% of all Salesforce talent. Architect scarcity may have led many customers to seek out Developers to tackle their projects. 

Demand for Salesforce Developers slowed the least across all roles

Salesforce Developers are essential to deploying new solutions, designing custom apps, making critical updates, tackling technical integrations, and more. According to Salesforce, the role’s prominence continues to grow, with the number of new Developer positions increasing by an average of 165% year-over-year for the past five years. 

This year, demand for Salesforce talent slowed across all roles and markets. However, Developer demand slowed the least, down just 17% YoY. (In North America, demand for Developers actually increased by 23% YoY.) The role made up 26% of all job listings this year, a 9% YoY increase in overall share of demand.

So, across all roles, demand for Architects is down the most, while demand for Developers is down the least. What does that tell us? It seems that many Salesforce customers are opting for roles with more affordable rates to get technical work done. Choosing the easiest and fastest solution instead of the best solution can have short-term benefits, but, in the long run, you may incur more costs and spend more time maintaining or enhancing that quick, easy solution.

Salesforce Development without architecture creates excessive technical debt

Development without the oversight of an experienced Architect can lead to structural problems in your Salesforce org. As your tech stack grows in size and complexity, you may begin to experience buggy code, poor design, architectural inconsistencies, or inefficient deployments. (It’s like building a house without blueprints and then finding that the walls don’t match up in the end.)

Development without the oversight of an experienced Architect can lead to structural problems in your Salesforce org.

Even though Architect talent typically comes at a higher cost than other Salesforce roles, they are rarely needed in a full-time capacity and the long-term value they provide almost always justifies the investment. In fact, our research into Salesforce operational excellence shows that leveraging an Architect can significantly improve your Salesforce ROI. 

Reduce technical debt with an on-demand architect 

Technical and Solution Architects design solutions that ensure Salesforce customers are efficiently and effectively utilizing Salesforce. They’re experts in functionality and integrations and understand how the technology impacts business processes and procedures. They can also communicate highly technical concepts in a way all stakeholders can understand.

If the salary requirements or frustration of finding a full-time Architect has hindered you in the past, consider leveraging independent consultants who work on demand. 

As Mike Martin, 10K’s Chief Customer Officer, recently shared about the benefits of on-demand Architect talent: “The good news is most customers don’t have a real need to hire a full-time Salesforce Architect—hence the beauty of using an on-demand talent marketplace. On-demand architects should be hired at the onset of an engagement to ensure the right decisions are made in a fractional capacity throughout the project.” 

Connect with a 10K Technical Architect on-demand >

Learn more about the latest Salesforce talent trends 

We’re excited to announce our 6th annual 2023 Salesforce Talent Ecosystem Report. Every year before Dreamforce, our team looks forward to pouring over the latest supply and demand data from the Salesforce talent ecosystem and compiling our findings to help you make more strategic decisions for your Salesforce talent needs. 

In the report, you’ll learn about the talent trends we uncovered by role and region, changes in the sprawling partner landscape, and insights from industry experts. We also dive into the growing influence of AI technologies and how they will impact Salesforce talent in the years to come.

Get the report >