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Demystifying Design Thinking in Salesforce

Mitali Dargani

This article covers:


  • Six types of design in transformation: User research, UX design, interaction design, service design, content design, and visual UI design.
  • Design thinking in Salesforce as a top-down / bottom-up problem-solving approach that prioritises understanding and addressing user needs through empathy, collaboration, and iterative experimentation, as well as an understanding of the art of the possible within the Salesforce ecosystem.

In the dynamic landscape of digital innovation and business, design thinking serves as a compelling approach towards solving problems, by putting the user at the heart of the creative process through empathy, collaboration, and iterative experimentation.

As the Salesforce platform has rapidly expanded in flexibility in recent years, the design process, tools and skills required to deliver a truly fantastic solution for users has dramatically changed as well. This article will help you get to grips with some of the key terms, so you can ensure your Salesforce transformation delivers what your users genuinely need and want, increasing the likelihood of adoption, leading to a significant return on investment.

When embarking on a digital transformation journey, it is essential to contemplate six key design areas that play a pivotal role in ensuring the user's needs are at the forefront.


Design methodology


Typical outputs

Stakeholders involved


User Research

Understanding user needs, behaviours, and preferences through research and analysis.

Personas, empathy maps, user journeys, high level pain points, usability reports, feature recommendations

Product owners, business analysts, marketing teams, end-users


User Experience (UX) Design

Designing the overall experience to ensure it is intuitive, user-friendly, and aligns with user expectations

Wireframes, prototypes, style guides, usability testing results

Product managers, UX designers, developers, business analysts, end-users


Interaction Design

Assessing how users interact with current digital interfaces and designing responsive, intuitive and engaging interactions

Wireframes and low and high fidelity prototypes

UX designers, product owners, business analyst


Service Design

Holistically designing and optimising end-to-end services and processes, by mapping all the key touchpoints and interactions between users and the services

Service blueprints, customer journey maps, process flows

Service designers, UX designers, product owners, business analysts, customer support representatives, end-users


Content Design

Curating evidence-based content (both text and image based) in a user friendly tone and accessible layout that aligns with the user’s needs, making it easy for them to act

Content style guides, messaging frameworks, knowledge articles, Path related guides, help text and descriptions, content audits

Content designers, UX designers, product managers, technical writers, and end-users


Visual User Interface (UI) Design

Creating the visual elements and layouts of digital interfaces, to create a visually pleasing, comprehensible, coherent design

UI mockups, style guides, design specifications

UI designers, UX designers, product managers, developers, end-users

1. User research leads to solving the right problems.

This becomes instrumental in aligning existing and new features with user-centric principles. It involves methods such as interviews, surveys, shadowing, usability testing, and data analysis to gather insights into how users interact with the current systems. By adopting this approach, organisations can be confident that their technological investments will align closely with what their users need.

2. User experience design preserves the client relationship.

It ensures that the Salesforce platform is intuitive, efficient and user needs driven. This involves designing interfaces and workflows that enable users to accomplish their tasks effectively and comfortably within the Salesforce ecosystem. User experience design treated as an afterthought quickly becomes a costly mistake for an organisation.

3. Interaction design enables the creation of seamless solutions.

Interaction deign is vital for optimising the arrangement of workflows and interface elements such as fields and buttons to enhance usability of the tool, as well as curating custom screens using human interaction design. This work relies on strong collaborative efforts across the user experience design and functional teams to create beautiful and useable solutions, driving adoption, user satisfaction and reputational gain.

4. Service design provides a holistic view that becomes a guideline for functional design.

This focuses on providing a birds-eye view of the end-to-end customer experience, interaction points, pain points and opportunities for improvement. It involves understanding customer needs, mapping out service and/or customer journeys, and designing digital touchpoints to deliver a seamless and satisfying end to end experience that fulfils the business objectives, ultimately driving business growth through Salesforce.

5. Content design makes important written material accessible to end users.

Facilitating the ease of consumption of information by users, content design involves considering factors such as user context, preferences, and accessibility needs to ensure that content is relevant and comprehensible. Moreover, content design in Salesforce transformation must adhere to regulations like consumer duty and treating customers fairly, ensuring that the content meets legal and ethical standards while fostering trust and transparency with users. This may involve providing clear explanations of processes, outlining rights and responsibilities pography, color schemes, and iconography to ensure a cohesive and visually appealing user experience – typically leveraged when designing custom screens, Lightning Web Components and Experience Cloud pages. This plays a crucial role in crafting intuitive and engaging interfaces within the Salesforce platform.

Great solutions start with great design thinking.


At Deloitte, we understand that design thinking is essential for effectively developing the right solutions in the right manner, fostering change and adoption among both internal and external users, and ultimately realising the desired vision, business benefits and ultimate return on investment from the transformation efforts.

Following this introduction to design principles, our upcoming articles will focus on case study examples where we bring these methodologies to life.

Meet the authors

Fraser Campbell

Senior Consultant

Running Experience and Service design discoveries and providing thought leadership in design thinking on transformation engagements in Digital Customer.