Dreamforce 2020: Analysis & Inside Story
The Dreamforce 2020 conference was held in December 2020 and for the first time ever 100% virtually. Fabrice Schwertz, Salesforce Sales Director at EI-Technologies, a subsidiary of the Cognizant group, looks back at Salesforce’s key announcements on this occasion.
Dreamforce, digital transformation indicator
Although the new remote format of the event meant that the participants were unable to interact with each other in person as they usually would, Fabrice Schwertz thought that the spirit of the event remained the same. “Dreamforce gives us an insight into Salesforce’s strategy in response to the digital transformation of the world and of businesses, anticipating French market developments three years ahead. In this last edition, Salesforce also announced an increased growth target, passing from the $21 billion milestone to $51 billion in 2026. Salesforce estimates to generate a revenue growth of 17% per year on its existing products, and of 38% per year by capitalising on the acquisition of Slack. For Fabrice Schwertz, this acquisition is also one of the key announcements as Slack “gives Salesforce the missing communication layer that it was looking for to offer its customers to fully benefit from an extended enterprise ecosystem”. Another important feature was the strengthening of Salesforce’s B2C focus, which involves optimising the customer experience in conjunction with a multi-channel approach. Last but not lease, Salesforce announced its entry into the world of “Robotic Automation Process”, with the launch of Einstein Automate, recalled Fabrice Schwertz.
Towards more agility with Hyperforce
Marking a significant technological shift, Hyperforce is the result of two years of work to revamp the Salesforce platform. “The idea behind Hyperforce was to bring the Salesforce infrastructure closer to the clients. With Hyperforce, the CRM software vendor will be able to move its own infrastructure to large public clouds such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure or Google Cloud Platform, and thereby refocus on its core business. In doing so, Salesforce has also proven that it is fully committed to meeting the regulatory requirements of its corporate customers, who will in future be able to store their data in the region of their choice. At the same time, the technical developments meet the requirements of organisations seeking ever greater compliance, security, operating independence, or reversibility. For Salesforce, this technological disruption represents an important vector for reducing costs, particularly by pooling the maintenance of its various infrastructures.
A partnership built on expertise
For the past 15 years, EI-Technologies is helping customers adapt to change with Salesforce: “Whenever Salesforce announces a new product, we deploy a team of experts dedicated to the specific product in order to master the solution and to offer an extension of the Salesforce offering that is perfectly integrated with other clouds”, explained Fabrice Schwertz. It is through its specialised knowledge and expertise that EI-Technologies keeps pace with the developments of Salesforce’s platform. “Our business as an application integrator is now moving towards increased support for the client over the long term. This means understanding their business vision and issues and being able to provide them with the relevant Salesforce solutions to support their digital roadmap”. EI-Technologies therefore focuses on three strategic dimensions within each transformation project: a business dimension, a technical dimension, and a change management dimension. With the support of the Cognizant group, EI-Technologies, which was earlier mainly an integrator, has now become an advisor-cum-integrator-cum-change manager, which now also changes its relationship with Salesforce: “we are moving towards shared governance of the accounts with long-term value creation”, pointed out Fabrice Schwertz.
Projects aimed at re-acceleration
Companies are gearing up for the recovery from the global health crisis, in particular by setting up projects to industrialise certain business processes. “As time saving is of the essence, we have, for example, noticed an acceleration of the requirements of our B2B clients for electronic signatures, for e-commerce systems combined with a ‘self-care’ approach and, for practices that allow the client not only to purchase products and services but also to manage its account independently. The Service Cloud Voice solution, which makes Customer Services more responsive, is also very popular. At EI-Technologies, in 2021, the focus will be on strengthening our support to our clients and on detecting their Salesforce requirements in order to anticipate the re-acceleration. “We will particularly focus on the success of Salesforce’s industry verticals, but also on the fast-growing clouds: Marketing, Revenue, and B2B Commerce”, concluded Fabrice Schwertz.