Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff announced last week that Chatter will become the de-facto front end of Salesforce going forward. In a statement Benioff talked about the rise of how people are connecting and the use of platforms like Twitter and Facebook, all of which are based on streams of user activity. He then went on to say that Chatter will become the primary interface into Salesforce. He called it a significant step that other companies will follow.
Turn on the tap
And he’s right. While there will be many skeptical of the transition into an enterprise context I’ve seen this shift in startups and how they create enterprise-class applications to handle workflow and user activities. No longer are they based around ‘forums’ or ‘projects’ but streams of actions that people can subscribe to, add value to then dip out when input is no longer required.
Data flows and integration channels
Right now everyone is talking Big Data. And it’s piling up fast from all sources; mobile and social being the most quoted right now from a consumer standpoint. People using Facebook and Twitter on a regular basis understand how the stream works and those same people also work in organizations, so it’s not a massive leap of faith to bring that interface and presentation of data and turn it into actionable processes and activities for users.
But for this to happen means treating data and integration with new goals in mind. It’s no longer about cases and batches, it’s real-time, right time activity streams that people can choose to become part of.
Sink or swim
So, will the Salesforce vision come to fruition ? Most definitely.
But success over your competitors will depend on whether you choose to dip that toe in or dive straight in.