Salesforce Rolling Out Upgrade – Dell Pitching In

Now that the Salesforce1 has lifted off and some of the excitement is beginning to fall into more practical considerations, is set to roll out a big upgrade to their industry leading CRM product. The Spring ’14 edition of the flagship CRM has been in preview with a general release set any day now.

According to PC World’s Chris Kanaracus this reflects how most of SF’s customers are still focused very much on the company’s core customer relationship management (CRM) application. Among the new features is a new mobile experience that has users being shifted to the Salesforce1 mobile application. Kanaracus explains, “The previously released Salesforce Touch is no longer available for download or use as an in-browser application, but Salesforce1 retains features such as support for Salesforce Communities while adding a refreshed user experience.

Chatter Mobile for Android and iOS have also been “upgraded” to Salesforce1. However, the BlackBerry version won’t get the same treatment. It is now a “connected app” that ties into through an API.”

In addition to bumping up storage per user size to 2GB, a number of other feature enhancements and changes have been made. For a complete look at the 300+ page release notes go here.

Dell Services, the IT and business services arm of the long time server manufacturer, is seeking to help their partners and customers in developing for and migrating applications to the Salesforce Platform. They just rolled out a whole new set of services to support these efforts. This will give developers yet another way to create apps for Salesforce but the company thinks there is more in this deal for them than that.

Dell says that it will offer “expert advisory and application migration services” while also acting as a single point of contact for design, delivery and ongoing application management.

According to Raman Sapra, executive director and global head of Strategy and Business Innovation Services at Dell Services, in his prepared statement “This collaboration helps Dell customers develop new applications using the cloud, on the platform that works best for their business. Customers will benefit not only from our strong Salesforce advisory services but also from Dell’s own successful implementation of the Salesforce Platform. Offering customers this type of choice and flexibility is at the heart of Dell’s overarching cloud strategy,”.

Although it is a strong sign of the importance of application development and migration for Salesfoce some businesses may find Dell’s services too costly. For these businesses there are still a number of alternatives who already have long track records developing and deploying applications to the popular platform.

Looking to this kind of expertise keeps you from paying the cost of Dell’s learning curve in the space and in most cases companies with longer track records working with SF can be both faster, more successful and less expensive.

Nonetheless this is a significant upgrade to Salesforce and Dell’s interest in providing services specifically for this platform shows that outside expertise will continue to be a useful asset to IT departments and Sales end-users for many years to come.