Salesforce Consultants vs Developers: Choosing the Right Expertise

Salesforce is a robust platform that revolutionized how businesses interact with customers. But to extract the most value out of it, you need the right expertise on your team. 

That’s where Salesforce Developers and Consultants come in. 

But who does what, and how do you choose between them? Let’s explore.

Understanding The Market Demand For Salesforce Expertise

Several key factors drive the high demand for Salesforce developers and consultants.

  • The Popularity of Salesforce: Salesforce is one of the leading CRM platforms globally. As more businesses adopt Salesforce to manage their customer relationships and business processes, the demand for skilled professionals who can maximize its potential grows.
  • Need For Customization: While Salesforce offers some turnkey tools and functionalities, every business has unique needs and processes. Salesforce Developers are skilled in customizing the platform, creating custom applications, and integrating it with other systems to meet these specific requirements.
  • Business Strategy Alignment: Consultants guide businesses using Salesforce to meet their strategic objectives and drive growth and efficiency. The value they add regarding strategic direction and alignment is critical, especially for businesses new to Salesforce or looking to optimize their platform use.
  • Constant Product Evolution: Salesforce is a continually evolving platform with several yearly updates. Keeping up with these changes and understanding how they can benefit a business is a job for experts.
  • Scaling Business Operations: As businesses grow and scale, so do their needs and processes. Developers and Consultants help these businesses scale their operations, ensuring the platform can handle increased data volume and more complex processes.

Salesforce Consultants vs. Salesforce Developers: Breaking Down Their Roles

6 Pitfalls to Avoid in Salesforce Development



Comparing The Roles at a Glance


Salesforce Developer

Salesforce Consultant

Main Role

Technical expert responsible for customization and development within the Salesforce platform. Strategic partner guiding organizations on optimal Salesforce usage aligned with business objectives.


Custom application development, integration with external systems, code optimization and debugging. Strategic guidance on Salesforce usage, business process alignment with Salesforce, and sharing best practices.

Skills Needed

Proficiency in Salesforce’s proprietary languages like Apex and Visualforce, understanding of Lightning, and a background in JavaScript, HTML, CSS. A solid understanding of business processes is also essential. Deep technical understanding of the Salesforce platform, robust business acumen to understand unique business models, and excellent communication skills.


Enhanced flexibility of Salesforce through customization and integrations, which results in a tailored system that matches unique business needs. Improved operational efficiency and business growth through strategic alignment of Salesforce capabilities with business strategy.


Keeping pace with Salesforce’s ever-evolving landscape, managing the complexity of integrations, and maintaining the balance between customization and upgradability. Understanding diverse and complex business models, encouraging changes in established business processes, and driving the adoption of best practices.

Best For

Organizations requiring extensive customizationand complex integrations to tailor Salesforce to their unique needs. Organizations looking to align their business strategies with Salesforce capabilities and seeking guidance on leveraging Salesforce optimally.

Salesforce Consultants: Responsibilities & Required Skills



Salesforce consultant using tablet analyzing sales data and economic growth graph chart.

Just as a ship requires a seasoned captain to navigate uncharted waters, businesses need the expertise of a Salesforce Consultant to direct their Salesforce voyage. 

These professionals operate at the intersection of technology and business strategy, ensuring that Salesforce implementation aligns with an organization’s broader goals.

Key Responsibilities of a Salesforce Consultant


A Salesforce Consultant is responsible for weaving together the strands of business strategy and Salesforce functionality. Here’s a more comprehensive overview of their crucial tasks:

  1. Strategic Guidance: Salesforce Consultants are the strategic partners who guide businesses on how best to leverage Salesforce. They help organizations identify key Salesforce features that align with their business objectives.
  2. Business Process Alignment: The value of Salesforce isn’t only in its capabilities but also in how these capabilities sync with a business’s processes. Consultants work on aligning the software’s functionalities with existing business processes or, in some cases, guide businesses to tweak their processes for optimal Salesforce utilization.
  3. Best Practices and Training: Consultants are often the touchpoints for transferring Salesforce knowledge to the organization’s internal team. They provide training, ensure best practices are followed, and help teams navigate the complexities of the platform.


Required Skills for Salesforce Consultants


Becoming a Salesforce Consultant requires a unique fusion of skills and attributes beyond mere familiarity with the platform. 

Technical Proficiency

At the heart of a Salesforce Consultant’s role lies a solid grasp of Salesforce as a platform, along with its various products and features. 

This expertise forms the bedrock of their consulting capabilities, enabling them to advise businesses accurately on leveraging the platform for their specific needs.

In detail, they should have the following:

  1. Salesforce Product Knowledge: Consultants need to understand the breadth of Salesforce offerings, from Sales Cloud to Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud, and beyond.
  2. Understanding of Salesforce Capabilities: They need to know what Salesforce can and cannot do. This knowledge helps in aligning the platform’s functionalities with business requirements.
  3. Technical Aspects: Even though they’re not primarily developers, a baseline understanding of Salesforce’s technical elements is necessary. This includes knowledge of Salesforce’s customization options, data model, security model, and process automation features.


Business Acumen

A Salesforce Consultant must be capable of understanding the intricacies of various business models and industries. 

They should have the following:

  1. Industry Knowledge: Each industry has unique challenges and opportunities. A good Salesforce Consultant should be able to navigate these nuances effectively.
  2. Strategic Insight: Consultants should understand the organization’s strategic objectives to align Salesforce’s capabilities with these goals effectively.
  3. Process Understanding: An intimate understanding of business processes is crucial. Consultants need to know how different parts of a business connect, interact, and depend on one another.

Salesforce Developers: Responsibilities & Required Skills

Salesforce development case study

Developers emerge as the technical wizards, transforming abstract business needs into tangible, effective solutions. 

Their role extends far beyond the superficial lines of code and dives deep into the heart of business operations.

Key Responsibilities of Salesforce Developers

A Salesforce Developer tailors the Salesforce platform to meet specific business requirements. Here’s a more detailed look into their critical tasks:

  1. Custom Application Development: They create bespoke applications within the Salesforce platform, building from the ground up to create software that perfectly matches business needs.
  2. Integration with External Systems: Salesforce seldom functions in isolation. Developers ensure it plays well with other systems in your IT infrastructure, establishing connections to allow seamless data flow and functionality.
  3. Code Optimization and Debugging: Developers routinely dig into the code, streamlining it for efficiency and troubleshooting any hitches that might occur.

Required Skills for Salesforce Developers

The role demands a diverse blend of skills, ranging from in-depth knowledge of programming languages to a keen understanding of business operations. 

Let’s unravel the key skills that are indispensable for a Salesforce Developer.

Technical Proficiency

At the core of a Salesforce Developer’s arsenal are strong technical skills. The developer must master programming languages and tools to customize the Salesforce platform effectively.

  1. Apex: This proprietary language of Salesforce is akin to Java and is used for backend processes. Mastery of Apex allows developers to build custom business logic into Salesforce applications.
  2. Visualforce: This is another Salesforce proprietary language, similar to HTML, that’s used to customize the user interface. Knowledge of Visualforce enables developers to create custom-made pages within the Salesforce platform.
  3. Lightning: Salesforce’s Lightning platform is a modern framework for application development. Familiarity with Lightning Components allows developers to create responsive applications for any device.
  4. JavaScript, HTML, CSS: These are the staples of front-end development. As Salesforce’s Lightning is built on these languages, proficiency in them is necessary for a Salesforce Developer.
  5. SOQL and SOSL: These Salesforce-specific query languages are used to retrieve data. Familiarity with SOQL and SOSL allows developers to manipulate data within Salesforce.
System Integration Skills

Salesforce must often be integrated with other systems within a business’s IT landscape. Therefore, developers must be adept at API usage and building secure, effective integrations.

Salesforce Platform Knowledge

Beyond coding, developers should also understand the ins and outs of the Salesforce platform—its capabilities, limitations, and latest updates. This encompasses Salesforce’s various products, its data model, security model, and the capabilities of its automation tools.

Salesforce Developers vs Salesforce Consultants: Selecting the Right Expertise

Businessman using smart phone with business global internet connection application technology and digital marketing

  • Business Needs and Goals: A Salesforce Developer might be the right choice if your organization requires extensive customization. On the contrary, a Salesforce Consultant would be a valuable asset for strategic alignment and leveraging Salesforce optimally.
  • Technical Complexity: Projects involving complex integrations and custom applications typically call for a Salesforce Developer.
  • Budget and Resources: Consider the financial implications and the resources at your disposal before deciding.
  • Long-term Strategy: If you envision a long-term relationship with Salesforce and foresee growth and evolution, a Salesforce Consultant can help you navigate this journey.

Deciding Between a Salesforce Developer and Consultant: KMS Offers Both

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It’s essential to remember that the choice is not necessarily about one being better than the other, but about what your organization needs most at its current stage.

At KMS Technology, we have both Salesforce Developers and Consultants ready to assist you. Our team of experts brings together a wealth of technical proficiency and strategic acumen to ensure your Salesforce journey is successful and beneficial to your organization.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you still need to determine which path is right for your needs. We’re here to guide you, understand your unique business needs, and advise on the best course of action.

Contact us today, and let’s transform your business with Salesforce.

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