Top 10 Spring ’17 Service Cloud Features by Abhilasha Dhamija

Top 10 Spring ’17 Service Cloud Features

Zap! And the Lightning Experience hits Service Console with this new Spring ’17 release. Enjoy the streamlined UI and the ease of customizing it with the drag-and-drop Lightning App Builder. Not only this, but Knowledge also gets a Lightning charge, with a unified Knowledge tab and standard record types replacing custom articles types. Also, Field Service comes to your technicians with an iOS app now. And Open CTI comes to Lightning Console Apps, while Desktop CTI takes its final bow. Below are the top 10 wins for Service Cloud in detail:


  • Console: Lightning Strikes the Service Console (Beta)

The Salesforce Console is now part of Lightning Experience! It gives you an out-of-the-box Service Console app, a streamlined setup flow just for service-related features, and even more bells and whistles. Previously, the console was available only in Salesforce Classic.

Now easily take advantage of all the awesomeness that Lightning Experience has to offer. Service agents would love the updated user interface and easy-to-use Lightning components, and the ability to customize the console in just a few clicks. To get you up and running in the console quickly, salesforce gives you an out-of-the-box app called Service Console that you can customize accordingly.


Here’s what the Service Console app comes with.

  • Preconfigured Lightning page for cases that uses a three-column layout (1) that includes Related Record components (2), Related List components (3), and the Knowledge sidebar (4)
  • Preconfigured utility bar with History and Notes (5)
  • Compact case feed (6)

Customizing a console in Lightning Experience becomes a breeze now. From Setup, use the App Manager to:

  • Add your own branding
  • Add other items, such as products and contracts (the Service Console app includes accounts, contacts, cases, opportunities, and leads by default)
  • Add other utilities, such as an Open CTI softphone
  • Assign the app to the appropriate user profiles, like your service agent profiles

Want to customize even more? To update Lightning pages, head over to the Lightning App Builder to drag and drop components on a page.


  • Lightning Service Setup—Your Life Just Got a Whole Lot Easier! (Beta)

As we know that Service Cloud is a powerful tool with so many features that setup can seem daunting, especially if you’re new to the product. “Which feature do we set up first? Can we enable our Facebook pages? How do we add users to the Service Cloud app?” Thanks to Lightning Service Setup, those days of doubt are in the rearview mirror.

Spring ’17 comes up with some cool setup flows, an intuitive setup tree displaying the most essential nodes, and a performance metrics dashboard. Prefer a guided step-by-step experience? Here you go, a Recommended Setup to help you get started.

Here’s what the Lightning Service Setup home page looks like:

02_2 full_dash

Setup Home: Have a Look Around!

Explore branches of the setup tree and check out all the features at your disposal.

Guided Setup Flows

Maybe you want customer emails automatically turned into cases. Maybe you want Facebook posts and Tweets automatically turned into cases. Sounds good? With guided setup flows you just follow a few simple prompts and your email and social channels are up and running, ready to field customer queries.

Recommended Setup

Whether you’re a Service Cloud newbie or a seasoned veteran, Recommended Setup is a fun and efficient way to get ready for customer success. In 10 simple steps you can set up key features, learn more about the power of Service Cloud, and get plugged into the Salesforce community!


Setup Home also offers a performance dashboard to monitor your service metrics. See how your email and social channels are doing, analyze call center spikes, and view up-to-the-minute caseload stats—all from Lightning Service Setup!


  • Knowledge: Say Hello to Lightning Knowledge (Beta)

Knowledge has taken the leap to Lightning Experience, giving you a high-powered yet streamlined way to manage your knowledge base. With Lightning Knowledge, you get the benefits of standard objects that work just like other objects in Salesforce. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.

This release contains a beta version of Lightning Knowledge, which means it’s a high-quality feature with known limitations.

Simplified Actions and Permissions

For Lightning Knowledge, you no longer assign article actions with public groups. Access and permissions are now based on record types, not article types, and there are new CRUD values and profile permissions.

Knowledge Search

Use search in Lightning Experience to perform a Knowledge search, and use advanced search to pare down your potential results. Read snippets of top results before you click (beta), search archived articles, and see the results count in the Knowledge tab and sidebar. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.


Unified Knowledge Home Page

Lightning Knowledge has one centralized home page instead of two tabs for Knowledge (searching and viewing articles) and Article Management (authoring, editing, and translating articles). Plus, you can do several authoring actions without leaving Knowledge home.

Record Types Takes the Main Stage

When you enable Lightning Knowledge, record types replace article types to distinguish different types of articles. For each record type, you can customize its page layout and compact layout to control what displays for different types of articles or user profiles. You can also share fields and define Workflow across record types. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.

For each record type, you can select page layouts by profile or choose to apply one layout to all profiles.


Standard Record Home: Get More from Your Articles with Five New Components

Knowledge record types give you a standard record home for articles. Spring ’17 introduces five components in the standard record home for Knowledge articles: Ratings, Files, Versions, Data Category Viewer, and Data Category Chooser.

Thumbs Up to Knowledge Article Ratings

With the new ratings component, your agents, internal employees, and customers can see how others have rated an article and add their rating to the mix.


Add Files to Knowledge Articles in a Snap

In Lightning Knowledge, the file selector replaces the custom Knowledge File fields in Classic Knowledge. Add files to articles the same way you add files to other Salesforce records. Add the Files related list in your record type page layouts using Salesforce Classic Setup.

View Previous Knowledge Article Versions and Changes

You no longer have to leave an article’s record home to see its version history and the changes that were made. From the versions component, get a high-level view of the changes, or click through to see the complete article.

View the Data Categories Assigned to a Knowledge Article

See how articles have been tagged with the Data Category Viewer. You can expand and collapse data categories and subcategories for a high-level or granular view.


Add Data Categories to a Knowledge Article

Change the data categories on an article draft right from the Data Category Viewer. Anyone with the “Edit” permission on Knowledge can change the data categories for an article draft. Select individual subcategories, or a group. You can add up to 8 data categories per data category group per article.

Search, Attach, and Follow Articles, with the Knowledge Sidebar for the Lightning Service Console

Keep agents connected to your Knowledge base while they’re working in the console with the new Knowledge sidebar. Agents can see suggested articles for the case they’re viewing or perform a search to find more articles. They can use the sidebar to track articles and attach them to cases.


  • Field Service: Outstanding in Your Field

Technicians, rejoice! The Field Service mobile app for iOS (Generally Available) is your all-in-one solution. Take your onsite service to the next level with parts and van stock tracking, service appointment status, work order priority, and reporting.

The Field Service Lightning iOS Mobile App (Generally Available)

Take your field service operation to the next level with the Field Service Lightning iOS mobile app. Technicians can harness the wealth of data, scheduling and automation tools, and customizability of your Salesforce org to get work done quickly from anywhere. And offline-first design means that technicians can always do their job, even without internet access. More productive technicians means happier customers!

Track Your Parts and Van Stock

Track multiple aspects of your parts and van stock such as, which parts are available where, which parts are required for a work type, and which parts were consumed for a work order.

Field Service Locations

Sort your locations into vans, warehouses, customer sites, or whatever suits your organization and track parts available at each location.

Your service locations can be as large as a warehouse or as small as a tool box. They can be your client sites or your service vans. They vary in size, location, and what they contain, and they are unique to your company. Salesforce Field Service lets you create locations to fit your needs.

Add the Location Type and Inventory Location and Mobile fields to your location page layouts.


Create Templates for Field Service Customer Reports

Help your technicians make your customers happy with fast field service reports delivered to their inboxes. You can create templates so your technicians and dispatchers can create reports for work orders, work order line items, and service appointments and email them directly to the customer. You can use standard templates or create variations of your own.

On the page layouts of Work Orders, Work Order Line Items, and Service Appointments, add the button Create Service Report.


Now technicians and dispatchers can access and send the reports from the object. They can choose from the standard template for the object (work order, work order line item, or service appointment) or a custom one.


Service Appointment Status

Set and view the status of your service appointments in acute detail from not scheduled to completed, including late and running long.

09_service status

Optimize Scheduling with the Field Service Lightning Managed Package

The Field Service Lightning managed package builds on Salesforce’s standard field service features to deliver a rich, highly customizable experience for dispatchers and technicians. You can download the package if you have the Service Cloud and a Field Service license.

The managed package comes with:

  • Scheduling and Optimization: With a robust toolbox of work rules and scheduling policies, the scheduling engine optimizes resource assignments, considering skills, location, and your business objectives.
  • Dispatcher Console: With appointment lists, scheduling actions, Gantt chart, and an interactive map, the console gives dispatchers and supervisors a bird’s-eye view of all service appointments.
  • Administration App: A one-stop-shop for integrating and maintaining scheduling policies, global actions, sharing tools, and optimization rules.
  • Automatic user permission setup and updates: Set up your field service user permissions and keep them updated with the click of a button.


  • Lightning Case Management

Resolving customer issues and managing cases in Lightning keeps getting better and better! This release provides a revamped compact case feed so that agents can quickly see the case progression. The Case Assignment checkbox is now visible on the case page layout so that agents can trigger assignment rules when creating and editing cases. These changes apply to Lightning Experience only.

Compact Case Feed Gets a Makeover for Lightning Experience

We’ve enhanced the compact case feed to make it easier for busy agents to quickly understand the case progression at a glance. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.


Case Assignment Checkbox Visible in Lightning Experience

Support agents now can see the Case Assignment checkbox on new cases in Lightning Experience. This change applies to Lightning Experience only.

Previously, the Case Assignment Checkbox wasn’t visible in Lightning Experience. To allow agents to trigger assignment rules manually when cases are created or edited.


  • Social Customer Service: Seamless Support

Use the Chatter REST API to set up Social Customer Service in your org, do and discover more on the social post detail page, reply and direct message with ease on the case feed, and connect your API enabled Professional edition org with Social Customer Service.

Social Customer Service API Support

Use the Chatter REST API to enable (or disable) Social Customer Service in your org, monitor your social accounts, get social network authorization information, retrieve a user’s social accounts, and start social posts flowing.

Social Post Detail Page Just Got a Little More Detailed

From a social post detail page, you can triage the post, view the available social accounts, click into the social handles, see the status of the post and, in the related list, click the title to see the post content.


Social Post Tab in Lightning

Along with being available in Lighting, the Social Post tab has mass actions, allowing you to triage posts in bulk, icons to easily identify the provider, and a clickable Content field to see a post’s content.


Professional Edition Supported in Social Customer Service

If you have an API enabled org, you can enable Social Customer Service.


  • Omni-Channel: Supercharge Your Supervisors; Enjoy Increased Limits

Put real-time insights at your support supervisors’ fingertips with Omni-Channel Supervisor (Generally Available). This release also sees an increase in Omni-Channel org limits, and you can set a default user or queue for to assign work to when your org reaches the limits. This change applies to Salesforce Classic only.

Omni-Channel Supervisor Is Generally Available

Omni-Channel Supervisor brings real-time operational intelligence, all in a handy tab in the Salesforce Console. Information about your Omni-Channel agents, queues, and work is streamed live into the panel. Yes, you read that right: live. You see waiting times, open work, and more in real time.


 Supervisors can check the health of their call center using the Agents, Queues, and Work tabs. They can survey the landscape and see what’s open and active, who’s assigned to what, and other details, such as open capacities and average wait times for customers.

Plus, they can drill down for more detail about a specific agent, work, or queue, or take a look at the agent timeline for a more visual way of checking up on their team.

In every tab, they can use sorting and filtering to focus what’s on the screen and get what they need faster.

Assign Overflow Work to a User or Queue

You don’t have to miss out on work that’s created after your org reaches Omni-Channel limits. Set a user or queue to receive work until Omni-Channel is ready to use again. This change applies to Salesforce Classic only.

You set the Overflow Assignee in your Routing Configuration. Make sure that:

  • The user or queue you set has access to the object types that the Omni-Channel queue handles
  • All Omni-Channel queues in a bulk operation (such as changing the status or owner for multiple requests) use a routing configuration with an overflow assignee

Omni-Channel Org Limits Raised

The Omni-Channel party continues as salesforce “raise the roof” to 5,000 maximum queued work items per hour and 30,000 maximum pending routing requests. This change applies to Salesforce Classic only.


  • Live Agent: Route Chats on Omni-Channel, and Enjoy Updated Chat Transcripts and Features

Like other Omni-routed work, Live Agent chats routed with Omni-Channel can be sized and prioritized by queue, and the Live Chat Transcript is created when the chat’s requested. Plus, customers can save chat transcripts on iOS, chats now display live hyperlinks, and some notification sounds have been improved. This change applies to Salesforce Classic only.

Omni-Channel Routing for Chats is Generally Available

Route Live Agent chats with Omni-Channel to prioritize and size chats alongside other work and take advantage of Omni-Channel’s powerful routing system.

Instead of using Skills to route chats to the best-fit agent, select Omni as your button’s routing type and use your Omni-Channel queues instead. With Omni-Channel routing, your chats are prioritized relative to each other and to your other channels. Plus, you can change the size and priority of your chats by updating the routing configuration settings for your chat queues.

And there’s even more to love with Omni-Channel routing for chats, including consolidated notifications for chat agents, more reporting options using Agent Work, and Omni-Channel Supervisor for chat supervisors.

Page Layouts for Active, Waiting, and Ended Chat Transcripts

For chats routed with Omni-Channel, the Live Chat Transcript covers the entire chat lifecycle, starting from the chat request. You can customize page layouts based on the chat’s state: Waiting, Active, or Ended. That way, your support staff has just the information they need at each phase of the chat.

Customize Your Default Sidebar Lookup Component

A default sidebar lookup component for the Salesforce Console is now created for you when you create your first Omni chat button.

Customers Can Save Transcripts on iOS

Your customers can now save the chat transcript on iOS devices when the chat has ended. They click Save Chat to open the transcript in the Notes app. Then, they can save their transcript in Notes or copy-and-paste to move the text somewhere else.

Use Clickable Links in Your Chats

Sometimes customers want to share the web page or Knowledge article they’re viewing with their agent. Your agents are busy enough—they don’t have time to copy and paste. The links that your customers share in a chat now appear as hyperlinks for the agent in both the chat and the chat transcript. Previously, hyperlinks were available only for chats sent from agents to customers.


  • Snap-ins for Web: Bring the Power of Service Cloud Components to Your Website

Ever wish you could add nifty Service Cloud features like chat directly to your website or to a mobile browser? Snap-ins let you embed Service Cloud components into your web pages so that you can provide contextual support to your customers.

Snap-ins Chat Graduates from Beta to Generally Available

Snap-ins Chat is ready for prime time! It now provides key customization features. You can customize the pre-chat form based on your company’s needs. You can also customize the colors and font used in the chat widget so that the chat experience reflects your company’s branding and image.


Customize the Snap-ins Pre-Chat Form to Provide a Seamless Experience for Your Customers

Create a pre-chat form that addresses your different business needs and associates customer information with Salesforce records, like leads, cases, and contacts. You can also customize the fields used on the form.


Associate Sales Inquiries with Lead Records

If customers use chat to ask questions about sales, design a form that gathers customer contact information and relates it to leads in Salesforce.

Associate Service Inquiries with Cases and Contacts Records

If customers use chat for service inquiries, design a pre-chat form that creates cases and contacts so that agents can easily resolve customer issues.

Associate Other Inquiries with Contacts Records

If customers use chat for other requests, design a form that creates only contacts based on the customer information so that the right department can follow up.

Customize Your Snap-ins Chat Widget to Reflect Your Company’s Brand

Specify your company’s primary and accent colors so that the Snap-ins chat button and widget match your company’s branding and image. Select the chat body text font to reflect your branding.


Snap-ins for Mobile Apps

This release adds some great features to the Snap-ins SDKs for iOS and Android to make your mobile apps even better. With case deflection, solve your users’ problems before they even need to create cases. Build knowledge bases customized for specific user profiles so that users get the right information for their needs. Live Agent Chat and SOS has also been improved so that you can provide even better real-time support to your customers.


  • Other Changes in Service Cloud

Web-to-Case: Thwart Spammers with reCAPTCHA

Add reCAPTCHA to your Web-to-Case form to make it easy for customers to contact your company while making it difficult for spambots to waste service agents’ time. The reCAPTCHA widget requires customers to select a checkbox before they can create a case. Enabling spam filtering lets customer service agents focus on resolving real customer issues, and not on spam cases. This change applies to both Lightning Experience and Salesforce Classic.


Automatically Assign Cases to Queues When Customers Submit Cases via Email-to-Case

Automatically assign cases to support queues when customers submit cases using Email-to-Case, so that service agents can quickly triage and respond to new cases. When you configure an Email-to-Case routing address, select a queue to assign cases to. This change applies to both Lightning Experience and Salesforce Classic.

When you assign cases to a user or queue via the routing address, your selection overrides the default case owner that’s specified on the Support Settings page.

Previously, assigning cases to queues was supported only for Outlook routing addresses, not for Email-to-Case routing addresses.


Call Center App Gets a New Name

To better align with the future direction of the Service Cloud, salesforce has renamed the Call Center app to Service. You can access this app in Salesforce Classic using the app menu and in Lightning Experience using the App Launcher.

Chatter Answers Retires in Winter ’18

Start planning that retirement party for Chatter Answers! After years of faithful service helping users find answers to their pressing questions, Chatter Answers is calling it quits in Winter ’18. Salesforce will no longer support Chatter Answers, and users of Chatter Answers will no longer be able to post, answer, comment, or view any of the existing Chatter Answers data. Chatter Answers is passing the torch to Chatter Questions, an eager young thing ready to take up the self-service mantle.

Lightning for Outlook and Lightning for Gmail (Beta) Welcome Service Cloud Customers

In this release, salesforce extends the support for Lightning for Outlook and Lightning for Gmail to customers with Service Cloud licenses.

Abhilasha Dhamija is the makepositive Service Manager in Managed Services now based in London, UK, previously working for makepositive in Gurgaon, India and a regular blogger. Click here to see Abhilasha’s blog.

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