Involving Development Tools, Salesforce Takes The Plunge To Blockchain Technology
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Looking ahead to the next big technology whether mobile, social, internet of thing or artificial intelligence, Salesforce is a company that has topped each segment. Salesforce’s co-founders marc Benioff and Parker Harris in an interview with business insider’s Julie Bort mentioned the range of subjects including how they came to be working on one of the hottest technologies, a blockchain product.
Beginning with his story, Benioff continued when at the world economic forum in Switzerland a bit of serendipity led him to think about blockchain and how it can be used as part of the Salesforce family of products.
At the same time as the WEF, it turned out there was a crypto conference going on and it resulted in two worlds colliding at a Salesforce event at intercontinental hotel where one of the crypto conference attendees engaged Benioff in a conversation which set to the start of something.
As Benioff comments, ” thinking a lot about what could be Salesforce’s strategy around blockchain as well as around cryptocurrencies and how we relate to all these things.” Being a big believer in the power of serendipity, he said just having the conversation took him down the road thinking more seriously about the role of Salesforce in this developing technology.
As he kept thinking about it more and more, the greater he believed that Salesforce could make use of blockchain. That was when suddenly something clicked for him and he saw a way to put blockchain and cryptocurrencies work in Salesforce. Ultimately he states, “ with all the hope on Dreamforce, we will have a blockchain and cryptocurrency solution and that’s how it works.”
The breakthrough idea as explained by benioff
A visionary, Benioff says a lot comes from simply paying attention that was what he did when talking to this person in Davos while recognizing an opportunity for expanding Salesforce in a meaningful way. “ paying attention, mainly listening brings a lot of ideas, as new ideas are coming in all the time”, he explained. He identifies his main job to be understanding which ideas are most important for Salesforce customers, as he recognizes that there are more ideas out there than they can execute.
Even though blockchain is the electronic ledger to track Bitcoin or other digital currencies, it also has a more general business role. It can track just about anything of value as an irrefutable and immutable record. The company lately announced its first blockchain product and it was aimed at developers mainly.
The modus operandi of Salesforce is always starting slowly and then branching out after it gets a feel for customer requirements. Following a similar path, the company comes with a low-code blockchain development tool on the lightning platform. The only available strategy is to select design partners for now and that isn’t generally available until sometime later.
The Entry Of Salesforce Into Blockchain Technology
A few of the first public statements were about blockchain, as Benioff said the company looks at how it could incorporate blockchain into Salesforce using it to take advantage of gaps in the CRM platform or if it even made sense to. According to Adam Caplan, SP of the emerging technology at Salesforce, “ is this technology just looking for problems to solve or could it drive big business impact?”
Realizing that there was something there that could help companies, especially those working with partners outside the organization Salesforce concluded after talking to 100 customers. To collaborate in a trusted environment the blockchain could provide a way for these companies.
As Caplan opines, the customers he talked to had already begun experimenting with the idea of working in trusted environments as along with immutable records and other distributed ledger concepts, most of them were stuck in proof of concept stages looking for a way to streamline the application development process.
According to Bret Taylor, the president, and chief product officer at Salesforce, it opens up new business models with decentralized nature of blockchain that earlier might not have been possible on the platform and this is what the company has been focusing on.
As Taylor explains, “ enabling multiple parties to work together in a trusted way creating business models around the ecosystems, we love the idea of extending the CRM with this capability rather than just direct customer relationships.”
As Taylor goes on to explain, the company goes for developers as initial entrée into blockchain and by this helps customers get going with a fairly quick way abstracting a lot of complexity that is associated with developing blockchain applications.
imilar to this, Brent Leary, owning the CRM consultancy CRM Essentials sees a lot of potential in the new blockchain tools as also he cautions it's very early. Leary talks about it, “ leveraging blockchain technology allowing companies to decentralized data with CRM data is potentially big. Even if it is unavailable for a while, Salesforce has resources and mindshare that bring large customer base to enterprise customers with huge scale to blockchain and speed up the adoption process.”
The Concluding Words From The Pioneers
Consisting of three components, the new product comes as blockchain builder to help build blockchain applications by developers; blockchain connect that integrates blockchain actions directly with applications on the Salesforce platform; and lastly the blockchain engage inviting parties to blockchain application even though they are part of the Salesforce ecosystem or not.
Concluding, Taylor said,” it is sure to help enable a lot of our customers to start experimenting with these new business models and new approaches to build ecosystems around their products and experiences, with having Salesforce gravity being around the customer and customer experience making blockchain accessible to a broad range of developers.”