Salesforce on Wednesday unveiled its new sales-focused community, dubbed Salesblazer, in a bid to buoy aspiring salespeople with a new sales certificate, free courses and team support.
Salesforce aims to make the new sales-centric group a hub for all who want to pursue careers in tech sales in hopes of filling the need for skilled sales personnel in the industry.
"A lot of sales reps, they just end up Googling their way through life," said Ketan Karkhanis, general manager and senior vice president of Sales Cloud at Salesforce.
Aggregating sales courses for a new generation
As the sales landscape shifts toward virtual buying, AI-supported tools and self-service offerings, Salesforce wants to expand its education platform to give more people access to relevant skills and best practices.
Salesblazer includes Trailhead's 55 sales-related course badges now streamlined into four learning paths: sales rep, business development rep, sales leader and sales operations professional.
Salesblazer also offers a new Sales Representative Certification, which will be available starting May 4. While the courses are free, the certification will cost $200.
Besides all the trainings, Salesblazer also features Salesforce's skilled Trailblazer community, an organization for third-party Salesforce consultants, administrators and other IT professionals that brings together learners with similar goals.
"They can find other people who are facing the same challenges that they are," said Kris Lande, senior vice president of the Trailblazer Ecosystem at Salesforce.
Trailhead student today, Salesforce consultant tomorrow
Trailhead graduate Tony Nguyen is one such person. He found the Trailblazer community when a friend suggested it after he lost his restaurant management job during the 2020 pandemic.
Over the next two and a half years, Nguyen collected eight Trailhead certifications. His most recent one, Salesforce Sharing and Visibility Architect, focuses on data security models best practices.
He now works as a Salesforce consultant at Slalom, a Seattle-based multinational technology consulting firm.
"I really couldn't get where I am today without the individuals that helped me along the way," Nguyen said.
In one of his former positions, Nguyen used his skills gained from Trailhead to help sellers transition from a manual document generation process to an automatic one that took five minutes and a few clicks to get documents written and sent to the client, he said.
Ketan KarkhanisGeneral manager, senior vice president, Sales Cloud, Salesforce
In addition to his position at Slalom, Nguyen is active in the Trailblazer community as a lead Salesforce instructor. Last year he coached more than 600 people, giving them advice on how to break into the industry.
"The hardest challenge is, 'How do we prove to other people that we have what it takes to switch to a new career?'" Nguyen said.
"There's a lot of workforce development programs that are involved with Salesforce that really helped break down this barrier," he added.
Mary Reines is a news writer covering customer experience and unified communications for TechTarget Editorial. Before TechTarget, Reines was arts editor at the Marblehead Reporter.