Another whirlwind Dreamforce conference has come and gone. The 2012 edition was bigger than ever, with a rumored 70,000+ attendees registered. That sounds about right because we had foot traffic coming out of our ears for 4 straight days at the Jitterbit booth.
When you talk to that many people in such a short span of time, you start to hear similar stories, reactions, challenges, and general trends. Here are the 5 things we heard most around Salesforce Integration last week:
Jitterbit Data Loader for Salesforce is a hit. We suspected this prior to the show since it had quickly become the most popular app on the AppExchange, but hearing it live and in-person put a whole new perspective on it. Perhaps the two most common things we heard at the booth this year were “Your Data Loader has changed the way I work” and “____ told me I had to stop by your booth and ask about your incredible Data Loader.” We were very honored when Salesforce asked us to develop the Data Loader, but we’re even more excited by the response from their customers. By the way, if you haven’t already, you can get it right here.
Organizations want ERP integration. Whether it’s SAP, Oracle EBS, Microsoft Dynamics or other systems, Salesforce customers want to connect their critical business data such as contacts, customers, orders, inventory and pricing with Salesforce. There were two common reasons for doing so: First, to provide their teams, whether they work out of Salesforce or the ERP application, a single up-to-date view of the latest customer and product information; and second, to automate common business processes such as Quote-to-Cash. Some other goals we heard included providing better customer service, accessing additional up-sell and cross-selling opportunities, and putting in place better ways to keep their data clean and accurate.
Extending Chatter through Social integration. Dreamforce sessions and keynotes were filled with anecdotes about how Chatter has helped companies drive higher efficiency, create open channels between departments, and promote better communication with partners and customers. What we heard at the Jitterbit booth is that organizations are beginning to think about how they can extend these benefits to their other technology investments. Most often we talked about Jitterbit’s ability to extend Chatter to ERP applications such as SAP. In doing so, we enable companies to use Chatter to get real-time visibility to every aspect of the business, not just Sales and Marketing activities. There’s a whole range of options once you get Chatter integrated, and we’ll be exploring these in future posts.
Implementation partners need integration solutions. Beyond set up, configuration, and training, integration is the most common requirement for any Salesforce implementation. And many implementers are in the hunt for tools that can speed the delivery time, reduce costs, and generally make it easier to take the integration concern off the table. Jitterbit Data Loader has been incredibly well received in this community, and new partners were coming out of the woodwork to discuss how Jitterbit can help them go beyond basic import/export migrations, and towards full-fledged Cloud integration. We received a number of glowing testimonials from current partners talking about just how much easier we make their jobs — and also how much more business they can take on because of Jitterbit. We’ll also be sharing more on these in a post coming soon.
Salesforce Citizens need an Integration hero! Our booth theme this year, “Jitterbit presents… The Super Connectors!”, a superhero-themed affair was a huge hit. The team assembled in front of our 8 foot tall comic-book inspired graphics, dressed in full body Spandex and (barely) diguising our true identities behind our Jitterbit masks. We were there not just as your Integration Heroes but to find out more about how we could make YOU an integration hero.