Dreamforce 2021 - Day 1 Highlights
Dreamforce 2021 - Day 1 Highlights
Dreamforce is finally here! And for the first time, it is accessible in a truly hybrid form both live in-person and with both broadcasted sessions and supplementary content online through Salesforce+. Here are several of the highlights from the perspective of a virtual attendee – but keep in mind that this just scratches the surface for all Dreamforce-related content that Salesforce is publishing this week!
General Themes of Social Responsibility
From the onset of the conference with Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff’s keynote featuring several of the company’s executive leadership and throughout several independent sessions, the focus was on social responsibility. Here are some of the topics that were celebrated:
- Here are some of the topics that were celebrated:
- Trailblazer Pandemic Response – Between Salesforce, its partners, and its customers, Marc Benioff touted the way that the Salesforce platform was employed to perform contract tracing and vaccine administration throughout the world.
- Sustainability Cloud 2.0 – Announced as the next generation of Salesforce’s tool for tracking carbon footprint, heavy investments continue in the direction of achieving a net zero business model.
- The Next Normal – Given the lasting shift in the way business is done due to the global pandemic, several luminaries discussed how phenomena like the Great Relocation and Great Resignation are forcing a digital-first approach.
Digital HQ & Customer 360
As you might expect, the conversation about the impact the pandemic has had on the way we work served as a perfect segway into Salesforce’s introduction of the Digital HQ, powered by Slack. Several sessions of content detailed how to use existing Slack features, the benefits of new tools like huddles, and the way that Salesforce is beginning to integrate the two platforms with productivity boosters like Trailhead for Slack.
Additionally, Salesforce has given considerable attention to marketing its Customer 360 mantra – that a single source of truth should exist for a customer within any given organization to maximize the customer experience. A case study with IBM showed just how powerful the concept can be when moving from legacy systems and workflows to a model centered on the customer’s point of view.
While perhaps a more minor topic on Dreamforce’s opening day, Salesforce+ includes content around driving adoption with new users that may not be as familiar with the Salesforce tool or a brand-new technical implementation. These six tips were provided as guiding principles for maximizing adoption:
- Prepare for Change Management – This is in the number one slot for a reason. Becoming too technology-led can result in a sleek but overwhelming set of features for a user group. Early, frequent communication coupled with level-setting of expectations is key to ensure a smooth rollout.
- Demonstrate Leadership Buy-In – With an executive advocate in your corner displaying enthusiasm for a new tool and new way to serve customers, you will have an easier time driving users to the system than if they feel their leaders are apathetic toward it.
- Know Your End-Users – Heavily related to point number one, this pays homage to the old public speaking adage that you must know your audience. If you have a group resistant to change, pace your project slowly. If you have a group whose attention can be lost quickly, plan frequent minor releases showing attentiveness to the features they care about most.
- Commit to Simplicity – Rome was not built in a day, and your CRM will not be either. Determine an MVP and stick to it, then determine a plan for iterating.
- Be Meaningful – In the world of Salesforce, time is an extremely valuable commodity. Since we are dealing with scarce resources, each area that time is invested should be calculated directly for yielding a strong user experience.
- Train, Learn, Repeat – Also strongly related to point one, no tool should go out with the appropriate training resource, whether it be live or recorded classes, user guides, or something else. Always provide the means to an understanding.
Although Salesforce published content for several industries on Salesforce+, Financial Services was one of the few with a headline session that included the announcement of a wealth of new tools for tackling the complexities of a heavily regulated industry.
- Here are the main takeaways:
- Vlad Tenev, Co-founder and CEO of Robinhood, spoke about the importance of values embedded within an organization and the ability to communicate them with customers. Salesforce plays a major role in their first value, Safety First, by allowing Robinhood to provide world-class service to its customers via Slack and Service Cloud.
- Digital Process Automation for Financial Services Cloud will allow subscribers to customize complex processes like account opening & onboarding, leveraging data already in Salesforce to minimize duplicate data entry, recommend products, integrate with core systems, and more.
- Smart Web Form Accelerators will reduce paperwork in a paperwork heavy industry, enabling digitized form templates for use out of the box. If customizations are required, customizations are supported!
In case you missed any of the sessions, you can watch Dreamforce content on demand on Salesforce+!