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CPQ-201 Salesforce CPQ Admin Essentials for New Administrators

Exam Specification: CPQ-201 Salesforce CPQ Admin Essentials for New Administrators

Exam Name: CPQ-201 Salesforce CPQ Admin Essentials for New Administrators
Exam Code: CPQ-201
Exam Duration: 90 minutes
Passing Score: 65%
Exam Format: Multiple-choice
Exam Delivery: Proctored online or at a testing center

Course Outline:

1. Introduction to Salesforce CPQ
- Overview of Salesforce CPQ and its benefits
- Key features and capabilities of Salesforce CPQ
- Introduction to the CPQ administration interface

2. Product Setup and Configuration
- Creating and managing products in Salesforce CPQ
- Configuring pricing rules and discount schedules
- Defining product bundles and options

3. Pricing and Quote Creation
- Managing price lists and price books
- Creating and customizing quote templates
- Configuring quote line editors and quote line fields

4. Quote Calculation and Pricing
- Understanding quote calculation and pricing methods
- Configuring price rules and pricing strategies
- Implementing pricing and discounting formulas

5. Quote Document Generation and Delivery
- Generating and customizing quote documents
- Configuring document templates and merge fields
- Emailing and delivering quotes to customers

6. Contract Management and Renewals
- Setting up contract management in Salesforce CPQ
- Configuring contract templates and terms
- Managing contract renewals and amendments

7. Reporting and Analytics
- Utilizing standard and custom reports in Salesforce CPQ
- Analyzing sales and quoting performance
- Monitoring key metrics and generating dashboards

Exam Objectives:

1. Understand the fundamentals and benefits of Salesforce CPQ.
2. Configure and manage products in Salesforce CPQ.
3. Set up pricing rules and discount schedules.
4. Create and customize quotes using Salesforce CPQ.
5. Calculate and apply pricing and discounts accurately.
6. Generate and deliver quote documents to customers.
7. Manage contracts and renewals in Salesforce CPQ.
8. Utilize reporting and analytics features in Salesforce CPQ.

Exam Syllabus:

Section 1: Introduction to Salesforce CPQ (10%)
- Overview of Salesforce CPQ and its benefits
- Key features and capabilities of Salesforce CPQ
- CPQ administration interface overview

Section 2: Product Setup and Configuration (20%)
- Creating and managing products in Salesforce CPQ
- Configuring pricing rules and discount schedules
- Defining product bundles and options

Section 3: Pricing and Quote Creation (15%)
- Managing price lists and price books
- Creating and customizing quote templates
- Configuring quote line editors and fields

Section 4: Quote Calculation and Pricing (20%)
- Quote calculation and pricing methods
- Configuring price rules and pricing strategies
- Implementing pricing and discounting formulas

Section 5: Quote Document Generation and Delivery (15%)
- Generating and customizing quote documents
- Configuring document templates and merge fields
- Emailing and delivering quotes to customers

Section 6: Contract Management and Renewals (10%)
- Setting up contract management in Salesforce CPQ
- Configuring contract templates and terms
- Managing contract renewals and amendments

Section 7: Reporting and Analytics (10%)
- Utilizing standard and custom reports in Salesforce CPQ
- Analyzing sales and quoting performance
- Monitoring key metrics and generating dashboards
Salesforce CPQ Admin Essentials for New Administrators
Salesforce Administrators candidate

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Salesforce CPQ Admin Essentials for New Administrators
Question: 52
Universal Containers has a requirement to ensure that Product B is always quoted with Product A in a bundle. The
products are in separate features and there is no clear indication that they must be sold together. They implemented a
Product Validation rule to fulfill this requirement, but received complaints that it was not user friendly.
What other approach should the Admin take to fulfill this requirement?
A. Create an Option Constraint with Type: Add.
B. Create a Configuration Price Rule to add Product
D. Create a Product Selection rule to add Product
F. Create an Option Constraint with Type: Dependency.
Answer: C
Question: 53
What is a valid formula for use in a Price Action where Target Object is Quote Line?
A. SBQQ__Product__r.SBQQ__DiscountSchedule__r.SBQQ__Order__c
B. SBQQ__Product__r.Name
C. SBQQ__Feature__r.SBQQ__Number__c
D. $User.FirstName
Answer: B
Question: 54
Bundle A has four Product Options within Product Feature A: Products A, B, C, and D. When Bundle A is added to a
How should the Admin set up a Discount Schedule so that the quantities of all Product Options on this Quote are
A. Set the Discount Schedule on Product Feature A and mark the Cross Products: Checkbox as TRU
C. Set the Discount Schedule on Product Feature A and mark the Cross Products Checkbox as FALS
E. Set the Discount Schedule on the Product Option records and mark the Cross Products checkbox as TRUE
F. Set the Discount Schedule on the Product Option records and mark the Cross Products checkbox as FALSE
Answer: A
Question: 55
A User tries to add a specific product to the quote and has typed the full Product Name into the Product Name search
filter and clicks apply, but does not see the product in the search results.
What is the reason why this product is not displayed?
A. A hidden search filter was set
B. A product rule is firing
C. A quote process is active.
D. Sort Products in Memory is enabled.
Answer: A
Question: 56
The Admin has created the Promotional Discount ABC price rule below.
TABLE Assuming a quote where all conditions form this rule are met, which products on the quote get a discount?
A. Product C
B. Product A, Product B, and Product C
C. Product A and Product C
D. Product B and Product C
Answer: D
Question: 57
Universal Containers needs to set up a bundle so that the sales rep can set some values that apply to the bundle rent,
and others that apply to specific options.
Which two configurations meet this requirement?
A. Use custom product option fields for option-level values.
B. Use configuration attributes for option-level values.
C. Use custom product option fields for bundle-level values.
D. Use configuration attributes for parent-level values.
Answer: A, D
Question: 58
A User forgot to store an Additional Discount at the Quote level while they were in the Line Editor. Rather than going
back in, they have changed the field on the Quotes detail page. After doing so, however, no prices were updated to
reflect the new discount.
Which reason could explain this unexpected behavior?
A. The Additional Discount is only applied to the Amount fields on the Quote.
B. Fields updated outside of the Line Editor do not affect Pricing.
C. The Additional Discount field is not in the Calculating Fields field set.
D. A Price Rule is needed to inject this value into the Quote Lines.
Answer: D
Question: 59
Universal Containers has the following Discount Schedule attached to product L. Product L is a Product Option for
two bundles, A and B. A user at Universal Containers has added both bundles to a Quote. In Bundle A, Product L has
a Quantity of 7. In Bundle B, Product L has a Quantity of 8. On this Quote, however, both Product Options are being
discounted using the second tier in the table above.
Which two actions allow both Product Options to be discounted using the first tier?
A. Set the Aggregation Scope field on the Discount Schedule to None, as well as uncheck Cross Products.
B. Apply a separate discount schedule to the Product Option records in each Bundle.
C. Move Discount Schedule X from Product L to the corresponding Product Option records in each Bundle.
D. Change the Product Option Type for Product L to Related Product in both Bundles.
Answer: AC
Question: 60
Universal Containers wants to prevent a User from putting in a discretionary discount at or above 40 percent on any
quote Line.
How should the Admin implement this restriction?
A. An Alter Product Rule will use an Error Condition against the Quote Line object. The Additional Discount (%)
field will be tested in the Error Condition.
B. An Alert Product Rule will use an Error Condition against the Quote Line object. A Summary Variable will be used
to calculate the maximum discount.
C. A Validation Product Rule will use an Error Condition against the Quote Line object. The Additional Discount (%)
field will be tested in the Error Condition.
D. A Validation Product Rule will use an Error Condition against the Quote Line object. A Summary Variable will be
used to calculate the maximum discount.
Answer: C
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Salesforce Administrators candidate - BingNews Search results Salesforce Administrators candidate - BingNews As AI Wipes Out Entry-Level Jobs, America Needs More Apprenticeships

The surprise hit song of the summer came from a Virginia singer-songwriter named Oliver Anthony.

Ryan Craig Portrait

Ryan Craig


I’ve been sellin’ my soul, workin’ all day

Overtime hours for bullshit pay…

…Young men are puttin’ themselves six feet in the ground
‘Cause all this damn country does is keep on kickin’ them down

“Rich Men North of Richmond” made Anthony the first unknown artist to debut at No. 1. He was singing for a young generation of outsiders with no way to break into the economy—and as an indictment of those profiting off them.

Young Americans are more frustrated than ever at their inability to access good jobs — and the rise of artificial intelligence will only compound the problem. To provide jobs and paths ahead for the largest number of people in today’s cutting-edge economy, the U.S. needs to revisit an old-fashioned way of training workers: apprenticeships.

For over half a century, college was the way for American kids to succeed — a socially accepted path to socioeconomic mobility that worked most of the time. From the 1960s to the turn of the century, America’s colleges were fairly affordable, costing students less than a new car.

In turn, the vast majority of college grads got hired by good companies and learned on the job while making enough to afford a place to live and a car to commute. The cherry on top was that it felt good. The ethos of college — equipping young people to fulfill their potential, whatever direction it might take them — was the ethos of America.

40% of College Grads Have Jobs That Don’t Require a Degree

But starting about 25 years ago, things began to change. Tuition and fees grew annually at double the rate of inflation. Digital technology transformed the economy. The good jobs college grads hoped to land were different than they had been a generation before. According to the National Skills Coalition, 92% of jobs now require digital skills — generalizable only inexactly. Employers want candidates to know how to work on platforms like HubSpot for marketing, Zendesk for customer service, NetSuite for finance, Workday for HR, and Salesforce for customer relationship management.

Few colleges incorporate training on these platforms into degree programs. To top it off, skills aren’t enough anymore. College grads can easily access Salesforce’s Trailhead courses to become certified Salesforce administrators, but not many organizations are excited about hiring a newly minted Salesforce admin without any experience. College graduates are now facing a skills gap and an experience gap, resulting in persistent underemployment; more than 40% of recent college graduates are underemployed — working in jobs they could have gotten without a degree or that don’t require the skills they gained in college.

Because underemployed grads have difficulty repaying student loans, national attention has focused on college’s crisis of affordability and student loan forgiveness. After the Biden Administration’s $400 billion plan to forgive student loans was struck down by the Supreme Court, the president announced a new effort to cancel loans, in addition to changes to income-driven repayment that could cost taxpayers as much as $475 billion. It’s a lot of money to try to mend a broken system.

AI Makes It Harder to Land That First Job

Meanwhile, underemployment is about to get worse. By taking over menial work that entry-level college-educated workers used to do while they learned the job and industry, artificial intelligence will make it harder to get a good first job. IBM has predicted that while AI won’t replace people, people who use AI will replace people who don’t. That’s going to widen the experience gap and further complicate career launches for young Americans.

Think about a recent graduate trying to get a first job in the claims department of a health insurer. Today, new hires learn on the job while doing a good deal of menial work. But once the insurance company implements AI, new workers won’t review every claim. Only claims that trip one or more flags will warrant human intervention, and such work is more likely to involve problem-solving and troubleshooting — skills requiring some level of insurance claims experience.

The same will be true across financial services, healthcare, technology, and logistics — a wide array of sectors where new college graduates are seeking to launch careers.

US Ranks Last in Apprenticeships

The best and most complete solution to this conundrum is apprenticeships, which provide the skills and experience young workers are missing. Apprenticeships are full-time jobs where a company hires candidates with the express purpose of training them — both in a classroom and on the job. Wages are lower at first but rise as apprentices gain skills and become more productive.

There are about 500,000 apprentices in the U.S. today. That may sound like a lot, but represents only 0.3% of the workforce and puts the U.S. last among developed countries. Approximately 70% of U.S. apprentices work in the construction sector.

Meanwhile, in the U.K. and Australia — where there are eight times as many apprentices per capita — it’s common to launch careers in software development, accounting, and healthcare via apprenticeship without a degree. And the Central European giants of apprenticeship — Germany, Switzerland, and Austria — do 10 to 15 times better. Germany has 323 occupations with national apprenticeship standards, including a raft of jobs in healthcare and services, like doctor’s assistant, dispensing optician, and banker.

Begin Shifting Public Funding for Colleges Into Apprenticeships

If the U.S. hopes to catch up, we need to support and fund dedicated apprenticeship programs. Other countries have recognized the central role played by intermediaries: nonprofit, for-profit, and public enterprises that hire and pay students until they become productive.

In the U.K., there are 850 apprenticeship intermediaries like Multiverse, founded by Euan Blair, son of former prime minister Tony Blair, knocking on the doors of virtually every large and mid-sized company to sell apprenticeship programs. (I’m the managing director of Achieve Partners, which invests in Multiverse.) In the U.S., there are only a handful.

Current funding for apprenticeship intermediaries and other programs is a fraction of what we spend on college classrooms: federal, state, and local governments continue to pour more than $400 billion each year into college while total spending on apprenticeship is under $400 million. An apprentice receives about 2% of what taxpayers spend on a college student.

The only way to rekindle the American Dream is to make apprenticeships part and parcel of core educational programs in college and high school. If we don’t want the soundtrack of the Age of AI to be songs like “Rich Men North of Richmond,” let’s begin giving young people work experience while they’re still in school.

About the Author

Ryan Craig is the managing director at Achieve Partners, a private equity firm investing in the future of learning and earning. He is also the author of College Disrupted, A New U, and the upcoming Apprentice Nation. He will speak about Apprentice Nation at the ASU California Center Grand in downtown L.A. on Tuesday, Nov. 28, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. RSVP for this event here.

Thu, 16 Nov 2023 04:22:00 -0600 en-US text/html
Salesforce collaborates with ICT Academy, AICTE to focus on Indian teacher’s upskilling

Customer relationship management platform Salesforce has collaborated with the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Academy and the All-India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to introduce the Educator’s Empowerment Program (EEP) on Salesforce Technologies. 

Sanket Atal, Managing Director - India Site, at Salesforce India, said, “The Educator’s Empowerment Program on Salesforce Technologies is a testament to our dedication to elevating the standards of technical education in India. Through this program, we aim to equip educators with the skills and expertise required to stay ahead in their field, foster innovation, and prepare students for the challenges of the future.”

The company noted that this collaboration is driven by the collaborators' shared vision to empower educators with the knowledge and skills they need to thrive in the ever-evolving landscape of technical education, thereby ensuring quality education for the learners.

“We believe this initiative will not only benefit educators but also lead to an enriched and dynamic learning experience for students across the country and thereby empower the education landscape,” Atal from Salesforce explained.

Salesforce said that the program will support virtual internships, leveraging Trailhead, their free online learning platform as part of the instructional practice. Three specific tracks have been identified, which include the Salesforce Platform Developer Track intended for individuals who have knowledge, skills, and experience building custom applications on the Lightning Platform. 

T. G. Sitharam, Chairman at AICTE, noted, “In this dynamic and fast-changing world, it is paramount that we deliver our teachers new skills, and more exposure to professional development programs that prepare students to be confident of adapting to the environment. We are delighted to partner with Salesforce through the ICT academy, to ensure upskilling of students with new concepts and techniques and encourage learning of Salesforce technologies to support learners' needs.”

The Salesforce Administrator Track, a guide to customise the platform while connecting business and technology and lastly, MuleSoft training on seamlessly inter-connection of data, applications and devices across on-premises and cloud computing environments, the company said.

Hari Balachandran, CEO at ICT Academy, added “ICT Academy in association with AICTE and Salesforce, is proud to bring the ‘Educators Empowerment Program’ on the Salesforce Technologies to the faculty members of higher education institutions across India. The initiative exemplifies our unwavering commitment to fostering educational excellence. By investing in our faculty's professional growth and equipping them with the latest teaching methodologies and skills, we are creating a ripple effect that will positively impact our entire academic community.”

Fri, 10 Nov 2023 09:09:00 -0600 en text/html
Residents of St Johns County will be able to help choose a new County Administrator No result found, try new keyword!Now the county is announcing the recruitment timeline for the selection of its next County Administrator from the pool of qualified candidates who applied for the vacant position. St. Johns County ... Thu, 05 Oct 2023 12:00:00 -0500 en-us text/html Checking out the Mercedes-Benz transformation journey as Salesforce updates Automotive Cloud

With connected cars predicted to make up as much as 95% of new vehicles sold by 2030, there’s clearly huge commercial opportunity here for tech vendors. This week sees Salesforce expanding its Automotive Cloud offering, providing real-time views of driver and vehicle data, including location, speed, and in-vehicle apps and systems.

As per the formal announcement, coming early in 2024: 

  • Connected Vehicle Visualization, pitched as “a real-time visualization of a vehicle’s connected features and services that will help make it easy for automakers to provide better in-car experiences, like remote assistance, and surface relevant new services to consumers – like notifying them about a free park assist trial”.
  • Actionable Telematics - these are intended to help automakers monitor telematics data, like vehicle location, speed, fuel, or battery consumption, and use automation to detect and alert customers to changes in their car’s status. Salesforce cites the example of Automotive Cloud being able to read the data coming off of a vehicle, noting an increase in revolutions per minute (RPMs), or loss of tire pressure, and automatically sending an alert to the driver in their infotainment console to warn them of the potential safety issue.
  • More data management - Automotive Cloud taps into Salesforce Data Cloud and as such is positioned as securely connecting data from any source, like telematics and dealership management systems, so automotive companies have a unified, real-time data foundation to build connected vehicle and driver experiences.
  • AI - Inevitably there’s an AI angle. Automakers can use Einstein Studio to build and train custom AI models. Using connected car data with custom AI models will enable automakers to deliver predictive insights, such as automakers being able to alert dealers automatically when a driver’s vehicle is about to hit 100,000 miles and proactively pitch new vehicles or offer personalized discounts and trade-in offers.


I confess at this point that I’m not a ‘car person’ myself  (unlike Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff who’s a big EV fan), but this announcement brought me back to the Automative keynote session at Dreamforce a couple of months back, where the company’s thinking around the future of mobility was laid out. 

According to Bart Seidner, Senior AVP Sales for Energy, Automotive and Utilities at Salesforce, while the company has been working with leading players in the automotive industry for over two decades, advances in technology mean that everyone is navigating what he calls “uneven terrain”. Expectations have never been higher, he says: 

Customer experience is a top priority. With the advent of the EV, new vehicle innovations are no longer just about the vehicle itself; it's about the software that differentiates the vehicle. Every vehicle is a connected vehicle. The automotive industry is trying to find new revenue streams, recurring revenue streams. Finally, [there's] sustainability. There's so much happening with sustainability, sustainability with EVs, sustainability in the value chain. Customers are driving sustainability behaviors. 

Seidner also highlights the amount of data that’s being generated by connected vehicles.  According to consultancy McKinsey, a connected car can generate around 25 GB of data every hour - and that’s just today. With further advances in technology, how much larger does that number become? This new stream of data is an opportunity, suggests Seidner: 

We must be smart about how we leverage this data. We can take advantage of AI, automation, analytics. We can leverage this data at scale. I have the opportunity to talk to customers in the automotive industry from all over the world and everybody agrees the opportunity in this industry could not be bigger. Strategic imperatives are changing the way that we operate. We must harness all this data so we can create new experiences to increase customer lifetime value, increase vehicle lifetime value, create those new revenue models, and deliver on the promise of AI.

The Mercedes-Benz journey 

Among Salesforce customers putting this into practice is German giant Mercedes-Benz. Timo Bularczyk, Director of Global Operations at Mercedes-Benz Mobility AG, has a clear vision of  the direction of travel for his industry: 

There's no doubt that the future is is fully electric and fully connected. We have more and more devices where we get data from. It's up to us to make use of that data, to ensure that we can offer the right product at the right time to our customers. 

For a brand like Mercedes-Benz, a key concept is luxury and that extends to the customer journey itself, with consumers expecting a seamless online/offline convergence. That presents two challenges, according to Bularczyk: 

First of all, we need to run this in the most efficient way that you can imagine. The other [challenge] is that it must be very customer-specific. So, two targets that are contradicting themselves. With Salesforce, we have 'out of the box' scalability with standard processes that we can use throughout the globe, and we enrich that with the data that we are getting from all of the different sources to create that luxury journey with unstandard processes. 

Mercedes-Benz's engagement with Salesforce on this transformation dates back a couple of years to when the automotive manufacturer carried out an analysis of where there would be room and opportunity to optimize potential. Salesforce was invited to take part. Bularczyk recalls: 

We saw that there was a lot of potential when we integrate the different Salesforce implementations that we have in Mercedes-Benz. With the replacement of legacy [systems], we could pull data together much better. We started the journey together with Salesforce Professional Services. They came in and they helped us to refine our strategy, gain confidence on the way forward, and ensured that we have the right skills in place to go on that journey together.

The customer experience is at the heart of the Mercedes-Benz transformation, insists Bularczyk:

As the customer, you don't want to understand that sales, after sales, financial services are independent legal entities with different people, different telephone numbers, different call centers. If you have a roadside assistance case with a leased vehicle, the last thing that you want to have to figure out is who you have to call to get assistance. 

Just imagine that you have a single source of truth, of customer data, and the agent has that available at their fingertips - that's where we want to go. That's how we want to integrate our products seamlessly together…So when it comes to the fact that there is a roadside assistance case that we can bring the best customer experience in that special moment.

Automotive Cloud is helping to enable this, he concludes: 

It helps us with the standardization of our data. There's a data model in place. Within Mercedes, we have different opinions on how this should be done, but we want to stick to the standard. We leverage the capabilities of the platform. You don't want to bring new services into every market with legacy software and re-invent the wheel every time.  You want to go on a platform. You want to have easy integration. You want to have the data available. And that's the journey that we're currently on, that we have started with, that we're successful with, and that we will grow. So, Automotive Cloud will have an increasing footprint in our strategy.  

Wed, 08 Nov 2023 00:09:00 -0600 BRAINSUM en text/html
Exploring The Potential Of AI In Business Transformation

Tirtha is a global business transformation leader at Salesforce, driving profitable growth, customer outcomes and operational efficiency.

Business transformation plays a pivotal role in staying relevant in a rapidly changing world. When I say "business transformation," I'm talking about strategic company-wide initiatives that are often difficult to implement but, when planned and executed successfully, can lead to innovation, increased revenue, improved operating margins, better customer experience and higher employee productivity.

Business transformations are either triggered by major external or internal changes. External triggers include major industry and business model advancements, rapidly shifting customer demands, new technology or pressure from activist investors. Internal triggers include cultural changes, organizational restructuring or major leadership changes.

Considering OpenAI's ChatGPT took only five days to be adopted by one million users, it’s a strong indicator that the world is ripe for AI-based transformations.

AI Integration In Business Transformation

As AI continues to evolve, several areas of business are experiencing groundbreaking transformations. Let's delve into some potential areas where AI is changing the landscape.

Sales And Marketing Optimizations

• Tailoring Diverse Customer Segments: AI's ability to analyze vast amounts of user data empowers businesses to identify patterns and segment customers more effectively based on usage trends, demographics, buying behaviors and organizational roles. These insights can assist businesses in crafting highly personalized products, services and add-on bundles.

• Enhancing The Sales And Marketing Lifecycle: By integrating AI in an end-to-end lifecycle, businesses can boost sales and marketing outcomes. From the initial stage of lead generation to closing deals, AI can assist in forecasting revenue and tailor product recommendations by precisely understanding what customers need and when they are ready for it. It can expedite the time required to close deals, boost conversion rates and unlock additional revenue.

• Improving Sales Productivity: AI can help sales teams maximize their productivity by marrying data and processes to help deeply understand an employee's expertise, interest and past performance. Leadership can take this information and align it with customer needs to maximize the allocation of resources, budget and headcounts. Companies can also leverage AI to allocate and optimize sales territories to reduce travel costs and maximize coverage.

Customer Experience Enhancements

• Preventing Customer Churn: Customer churn is one of the biggest problems in the subscription business. To prevent churn, customer success teams can leverage AI's predictive analytics to identify patterns, predict the probability of churn and proactively take steps to prevent it. With AI’s capabilities to analyze large datasets, businesses can identify product features and services that lead to user engagement and adoption. While onboarding new users, teams can leverage these features and services to enhance product stickiness early on.

• Implementing Chatbots And Virtual Assistants: Businesses can scale their customer support and maximize efficiency with AI models that can analyze existing customer queries, predict questions and issues and provide real-time solutions. Companies need to recognize when a customer needs to talk to a human instead of a chatbot and implement workflows that balance AI with a human touch.

• Personalizing Customers' Digital Journeys: Personalizing the digital user experience from the time customers are prospects to the time when they are loyal customers ready for an upgrade, AI can assist in proactively recognizing patterns as and when the probable customer is engaging with your product. A real-time curated product journey would distinguish the customer experience compared to a self-discovery approach.

Operational Efficiency And Employee Productivity

• Automating Repetitive Tasks: AI algorithms can effortlessly handle repetitive and time-consuming tasks so employees can focus on strategic initiatives. Companies can, for example, train AI models to perform checks required to approve an employee's timesheet and expense reports, freeing up the manager’s time. AI can also help companies identify patterns that can lead to system issues and proactively notify administrators. IT software assignment, user management and usage-based seat optimization can be performed by AI.

• Optimizing Human Resources Workflows: Companies can train AI algorithms to make data-driven recommendations throughout the hiring process to effectively manage resume screening, applicant tracking and interview scheduling processes and recommend suitable candidates based on the hiring team’s needs, skill sets, experience and selection criteria weightage. Companies can create personalized learning paths and monitor employees’ progress on AI-driven platforms during the onboarding phase.

• Improving Supply Chain And Inventory Management: Well-trained AI can forecast demand in real time based on historical and current parameters, which can unlock a responsive supply chain, leading to optimized inventory management and better estimation of restocking and minimum stock levels. Assessing traffic conditions in real time can be beneficial to delivery route optimization and avoid overheads due to rescheduling or delivery delay scenarios.

Recognizing And Mitigating AI Risks

AI is one of the most revolutionary technologies today, but to maximize its potential, we must proactively mitigate its risks.

• Removing Bias: Companies should promote responsible innovation in AI by placing people, economy and communities at the heart of innovation while complying with government policies and protecting people’s rights. Businesses are responsible for making their products safe, accessible and inclusive for people of all genders, races, nationalities, sexual orientations and abilities.

• Maintaining Transparency And Accountability: It’s crucial for businesses to foster and win customers’ trust with fair business processes, transparent data policies and sharing how their AI models make decisions. Companies need to be accountable for constantly evaluating data that feeds the algorithm, building AI models that are interpretable and training their AI models to ensure fair, transparent and equal experiences for all.

• Implementing AI Governance Systems: Companies must work with policymakers to develop robust AI governance systems. As per Future of Life, governance should include regulatory authorities dedicated to AI, a robust auditing ecosystem, oversight, watermarking systems to help distinguish real from computer-generated content and well-resourced institutions for coping with the dramatic economic and political disruptions that AI can potentially cause.

As a customer-centric strategy and business transformation leader at Salesforce, I've seen how powerful AI integration can be for innovation and business transformation. But it's important to do your due diligence and keep a human pulse on things to fully capitalize on its impact.

Forbes Business Development Council is an invitation-only community for sales and biz dev executives. Do I qualify?

Tue, 07 Nov 2023 22:00:00 -0600 Tirtha Chavan en text/html
Fatter paychecks coming for Billings city administrator

Billings saw significant new leadership take over in 2018.

In October, the Billings City Council unanimously chose Chris Kukulski, the former Bozeman and Kalispell city manager as Billings' next city administrator.

Kukulski had been serving as executive vice president for business development at Zoot Enterprises, and was one of four finalists vying to succeed Billings city administrator Bruce McCandless, who retired on Nov. 16. The decision came almost a year after the city's previous attempt to select a new administrator fell through over salary negotiations with Great Falls' city manager.

In the education world, School District 2 trustees selected Greg Upham, a former Helena administrator, to replace retiring superintendent Terry Bouck in May. But the pick wasn’t without drama — a New Jersey superintendent who trustees first selected turned down the job.

In September, Montana State University Billings inducted its fourth chancellor, Dan Edelman.

Edelman succeeded Mark Nook as the fourth chancellor since the university became MSUB in 1994. An interim chancellor, Ron Larsen, filled the role for about a year immediately prior to Edelman, who took over in May.

Edelman's resume includes time in the Army. He ultimately earned his doctorate and along the way worked as a certified public accountant, a professor and an investigator for the U.S. Department of Justice, among other positions.

Wed, 25 Oct 2023 00:34:00 -0500 AmyNile en text/html
With candidate in mind, East Bethel mayor says no posting for city administrator job

Consternation is growing in East Bethel, where the City Council is not renewing the city administrator's contract and the mayor said he will forgo posting the position with plans to appoint somebody he knows to the job.

The move has raised alarms among residents and local leaders, some of whom have aired frustrations on social media suggesting favoritism is playing a role in staffing decisions for the city in Anoka County.

"It is concerning that we have a mayor bringing in their candidate for city administrator without opening it up state- or region- or nationwide for a job paying $160,000 or so. It's a little alarming," Jill Anderson, an East Bethel resident and member of the St. Francis District School Board, said in an interview. "It's important as elected officials that we seek others' opinions. To bring one candidate in is short-sighted."

Mayor Kevin Lewis said at an Oct. 9 council meeting that he had "identified somebody who seems to meet all the criteria fairly well."

Lewis did not name the candidate, saying he had to keep the information private and citing the state Data Practices Act. But he added that "I seriously doubt we could find somebody more qualified for the job, in my honest opinion. I will update you as we go along."

An update was supposed to happen at Monday's council meeting, but Lewis had the item removed from the agenda and there was no further discussion.

Jack Davis has served as city administrator of the far north metro suburb since 2011. Davis, whose contract is up at the end of the year, said he was informed in June that the council "wanted to go in a different direction with my employment."

After that, Davis submitted a letter stating he would leave his position Dec. 5, officially creating the opening for a new city administrator.

"It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the people of East Bethel," he wrote. "I will always remember the relationships I've established and the support I've received during my time with the city."

The city has already seen turnover this year.

When former Mayor Tim Harrington stepped down in June, Lewis, then a council member, was appointed mayor. At that time, the council said it would accept applications to fill Lewis' seat, but had a preferred candidate in mind. The council appointed Lewis' neighbor, Bob DeRoche, to the council.

Council Member Brian Mundle said the council has also rejected two recommended candidates for boards and commissions in favor of other candidates with ties to Lewis.

"Are they going to do it again?" Mundle said.

State law does not require cities to post positions such as the city administrator role, said Amber Eisenschenk, a research manager with the League of Minnesota Cities.

But Mundle said he believes the city should post the job.

Lewis did not respond to an email or telephone message seeking comment. But during the Oct. 9 meeting, he indicated the city administrator job would not be posted.

"If you honestly believe you have someone who is extremely well-qualified, it is almost unfair to everyone to waste their time," he said at the meeting. "Trust me on this. I think you will be pleasantly surprised."

Wed, 25 Oct 2023 05:28:00 -0500 Tim Harlow text/html
Community invited to virtual reception for NB city administrator candidates

NORTH BEND — A community virtual reception for North Bend city administrator finalist candidates will be held at 5 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 8. To join the virtual reception to meet the candidates, RSVP to Emily Jensen at no later than Sept. 7. Jensen Strategies, the group hired to recruit a new city administrator, will respond with login instructions and further information. 

Current City Administrator Terence O'Connor will be retiring this fall. 

Nathan George has 10 years of upper-level local government management experience including serving as the deputy town manager of Fishers, Ind. for eight years as well as the assistant and interim city manager for the City of Emporia, Va. for two years. Currently, he is serving as a budget analyst for the Arizona Department of Transportation. He has also worked as a payroll manager for Multnomah County and deputy controller for the City of Fishers. George holds a Master's of Public Administration from the University of Nebraska and is an ICMA credentialed manager.

Alan Lanning has 20 years of upper-level local government management experience, most recently as the City Manager of Cordova, Alaska, where he served for four years. He previously served as city administrator for Lake City, Minn., and as City Manager for the cities of: Central City, Colo.; Castle Pines North, Colo.; Steamboat Springs, Colo.; and Brookings, N.D. Earlier, he served as town manager of Minturn, Colo. Lanning holds a Master's of Public Administration from the University of South Dakota and is an ICMA credentialed manager.

David Milliron has seven years of upper-level local government management experience, most recently as the City Manager of Danville, Ky. Previously, he served as the city manager for the cities of: Hogansville, Ga.; Villa Rica, Ga.; and Stockbridge, Ga. Prior to his public administration positions, Milliron was the president and executive director of the DeKalb Municipal Association and held elected office as a city commissioner for the City of Avondale Estates, in Georgia. He holds a Master's of Public Administration from Valdosta State University and is an ICMA credentialed manager.

Tue, 01 Sep 2020 12:00:00 -0500 en text/html

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