Secrets Learned While Transitioning to Salesforce Lightning

Julia Salem
Senior Content Marketing Manager
November 25, 2019

Transitioning to Salesforce Lightning will accelerate your company’s digital transformation, speed up employee productivity, and optimize company operations. OwnBackup recently hosted a webinar with three Salesforce professionals who have already gone through the process of transitioning to Lightning. Watch the webinar recording or read the highlights below to find out how these Salesforce professionals successfully migrated their complex orgs to Lightning and the insights they learned along the way.

Why Transition to Salesforce Lightning?

One of the main reasons cited by our panel was the fear of missing out on the new features and functionality, including, but not limited to Path, Console Apps, and Customizable Home Pages. Lightning doesn’t just look different, it also allows you to improve user experiences and productivity. 

What to Plan Ahead for Before Transitioning to Lightning?

Change can be scary. Nonetheless, it’s important to have executive buy-in at all levels of the organization, including middle management. Be sure to start the transition during a slower time of year and when no other major implementations are happening.

Quite a few Lightning Transition tasks, such as building a mobile-ready interface, implementing a data recovery strategy, creating a user adoption plan, recruiting test users, and transitioning attachments to files, can be started during the planning stage. For example, your Lightning Transition is an excellent time to build a mobile-ready interface. The changes you make as you transition to Lightning will also make your mobile experience more useful. 

How Can Teams Leverage Their Sandboxes During Lightning Transition?

The panel identified three ways to leverage sandboxes:
  1. Have a good change management strategy. Start developing in a developer sandbox. Then move those changes to a partial sandbox for more QA testing and Power User testing. Next, move the changes to your Full Sandbox for user testing and feedback. Lastly, move the changes to production. Make yourself available for user feedback throughout the process.
  2. Put real data in your sandboxes. Import data from production so you have something to reference in each sandbox environment. Data should look as close to reality as possible.
  3. Connect your mobile app to your sandboxes. Test for mobile. Especially if your users use the mobile app often.

How to Convert Documents to Lightning Files?

In Salesforce Classic, Documents were uploaded as Attachments. In Salesforce Lightning, there’s a new upload format called Files. Before you begin converting Documents to Files, ensure all new attachments are uploaded as Lightning Files.

To do this, go to Setup > Files > General Settings > Check off “Files uploaded to the Attachments related list on records are uploaded as Salesforce Files, not as attachments”. 

Before you start the conversion process, be sure to back up and test your attachment recovery process.

Next, you may go ahead and convert the Documents currently in your database. There are three ways to do this:

  1. Build your own API integration.
  2. Use Magic Mover for Notes And Attachments to Lightning Experience, which is a free AppExchange service.
  3. Export and import attachments from one object to another through data loader or workbench.

If you have a lot of attachments, converting your documents to files could be time-consuming. One webinar panelist, Mike Mihnovich, a Salesforce Business analyst from Adecco USA, recommended doing a batch first thing in the morning, before lunch, and at the end of the day, if you have a lot of attachments. 

How to Encourage Lightning User Adoption?

Get users excited by teasing out Lightning Features ahead of time. You could do this as a presentation during a sales team meeting. 

Once you launch Lightning to users, regularly give them training materials, short internal webinars/videos, and Trailhead modules to reference and self-train. Encourage your Super Users to transfer their knowledge to other users.

Meet with team leaders to see how Lightning can better meet their daily priorities.

Leverage SABWA (Salesforce Administration By Walking Around) to make sure no one is stuck. Users are more likely to ask for help if you seem available.

The Lightning Usage App is another useful app our panels recommended. This app shows you how often users are going into Lightning and how often they're switching back to Classic. 

How to Manage Changes Post-Transition?

After each rollout, have conversations with Super Users to understand how things are going and how new functionality is being used. Speak to resistant users as well.

Have office hours during which users can ask questions. Track questions and the necessary areas of improvement. This will help you build a template to make future rollouts more successful.

Transitioning to Lightning is not one and done. Users will want more. Salesforce can always be customized further. Have a roadmap and plan different phases. Then publicize that roadmap to your users. Make sure the first group doesn’t get to stage three before the third group gets to stage one. Keep up with Salesforce release notes to stay up-to-date on the new exciting features that could help your users work better in Lightning.

Final Tips and Tricks for Lightning Transition

  • Keep it simple. Don’t try to roll out another major project at the same time as your Lightning Transition.
  • Use Lightning Experience Transition Assistant (On the setup menu in your org.) & Optimizer to identify areas you may need to focus on during the transition.
  • Learn and encourage your users to learn from Trailhead modules about Lightning.
  • Develop a plan with deadlines.
  • Have a backup and recovery plan in case anything goes wrong.
  • Get users excited by teasing out new Lightning features.
  • Use Custom Report Types to see Lightning usage by user to identify which users are experiencing roadblocks.
  • Trailblazer Community GroupsLightning Now Trailblazer Community, and Lightning Now Tour can help you speak to and learn from others in the same boat.


For even more Lightning Transition advice, download the Accelerate Your Transition to Salesforce Lightning with OwnBackup eBook.

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