Dreamforce: Salesforce pushes better integrated customer experience suite

For me integration was the key topic of this year’s Dreamforce. With Customer 360, Salesforce has started its journey of integrating its different cloud applications. With MuleSoft it addresses the fast-growing demand from customers that require integration of back-end systems and other third-party data and systems.

With Customer 360, Salesforce has started to harmonize the various cloud applications it has acquired. After acquiring a number of solutions, Salesforce is now working on the integration of the applications that are based on different code bases and data models. In recent years, Salesforce has bought a number of specialists to complement the product offering. Examples are Exact Target for marketing automation and Demandware and CloudCraze for B2C & B2B e-commerce.

As more and more companies deploy more than one of Salesforce’s cloud solutions for sales, marketing, service and commerce, the initiative around Customer 360 is key. This is also true because Salesforce and its partners build industry-specific solutions that can only operate properly if processes can run across solution boundaries and if data can flow between the various cloud solutions involved. Of course, Salesforce calls Customer 360 an innovation. For me it is more the delivery of highly relevant features on the promise to provide a kind of “suite for customer experience management”.

Like Customer 360, the takeover of MuleSoft is a reaction to customer demands. Firms that run Salesforce applications want to manage their business processes end to end. From the digital point of sale into the backend where the orders are fulfilled. Also, companies that develop new applications on the Salesforce platform need features for the integration and for the management of APIs.

Of course, integration was one but not the only topic of the Dreamforce. Einstein Voice for instance opens new ways of interacting with the system via voice. It is not just about speech to text for creating notes. The technology rather allows the user to invoke actions such as an update of opportunities in Salesforce.

Einstein Voice is innovative. However, I believe that the initiatives around Customer 360 and MuleSoft have a very high impact for Salesforce customers and partners.