RealTime IT News

Salesforce Pushes Enterprise Collaboration

SAN FRANCISCO -- As it moves more strongly into the cloud, Salesforce.com is also moving strongly into making collaboration easier.

"Our vision is to give the same power, flexibility and completeness that we have in Salesforce.com to our customers," George Hu, applications and marketing executive vice president at Salesforce.com (NYSE: CRM), today told an audience at Dreamforce 2008, Salesforce.com's annual user conference.

To this end, Hu announced the ability to link directly between Salesforce.com (NYSE: CRM) back end customer relationship management (CRM) systems, an improved case management system, and demonstrated the ability to collaborate within Salesforce.com's CRM application using Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) Apps.

Hu also announced that customers can link their back end Salesforce CRM systems directly for free. In addition, he unveiled other new marketing features.

Linking their Salesforce CRM back ends together has helped Delta Airlines and Air France, which partner in sales to corporate accounts, increase sales, Hu said.

To let customers manage their information better, Salesforce.com is offering Salesforce Knowledge, a case management system based on the patented dimensions modeling technology it acquired from InStranet, Hu said. "This lets you know your customers intimately before delivering solutions to them, and it's now part of Salesforce CRM," he added.

Salesforce.com purchased InStranet for $31.5 million in August. At the time, it said the InStranet application could be easily integrated with other infrastructure platforms.

Brett Queener, Salesforce.com senior vice president, demonstrated how salespeople within an organization can use Salesforce CRM and Google Apps to pull presentations saved in any format from across their company for updating or use.

Extending the long-time collaboration between the two companies, Salesforce.com's Hu announced Google Docs for Salesforce CRM content.

"With Google Docs, you click one button in Salesforce and have access to Google Docs, Gmail and other Google applications, from within Salesforce," Google Enterprise president Dave Girouard told the audience.

Other new features unveiled in Winter 09, the latest release of Salesforce.com's CRM application, include features that let users measure the influence of sales campaigns, Google analytics snapshots, dashboards on mobile devices, and opportunity reporting.