New version of hosted customer relationship management solution beefs up customization, integration capabilities
New York — June 23, 2003 — Salesforce.com today launched the latest version of its hosted customer relationship management (CRM) solution, adding new features to boost sales productivity and increase adoption, as well as new integration and security capabilities and a free, stripped-down Personal Edition for individual usage.
The provider offers its solution under an application service provider (ASP) model, which means that end users access the application through Internet-connected computers and require no software on their own machines.
The new S3 version of salesforce.com is based on sforce, a new client/service application system that the solution provider said allows for easy customization with tools from such other software companies as BEA, Borland, Microsoft and Sun. Salesforce.com also offers a TIBCO-based integration server that provides for integration with enterprise solutions from such companies as SAP, Oracle, PeopleSoft and Siebel.
Salesforce.com said it invested more than four years of development and $100 million in research and infrastructure investment to build salesforce.com S3. For their money, they got about 100 new features targeting productivity and integration, security and ease-of-use.
First, the latest version adds 33 tools designed to improve productivity and increase user adoption. These include a shared documents library, a business process and workflow manager, and HTML rich-media e-mail support with dynamic click-through tracking. S3 also includes a Microsoft Outlook Edition, as well as executive opportunity alerts and tools to support integrated team selling.
The provider said the 33 technology-related upgrades in the new salesforce.com include capabilities to provide IT departments with improved security, reliability and control. Salesforce.com said it spent $10 million in data center upgrades to provide maximum uptime for the application — critical for a hosted solution. In addition to the extensibility and integration capabilities added through the sforce client/service application builder and integration server, S3 also introduces a new data security console intended to maximize a company's control over who has access to particular data, as well as local database mirroring.
Elsewhere, the 33 ease-of-use upgrades in S3 include new setup wizards and best practice e-mail templates, a Quick Start Guide and a Virtual CRM Manager, which automatically provides suggestions to companies on how to improve their CRM usage based on the best practices of the entire salesforce.com user community.
In addition, salesforce.com S3 introduces a Personal Edition to the provider's line-up. Designed for individual professionals currently not using salesforce.com, Personal Edition includes stripped-down CRM functionality, including integration with Outlook and Palm, and is offered free of charge to individual users.
As a hosted solution, Salesforce.com S3 will be deployed immediately to the provider's customer base, which includes 6,700 salesforce.com companies, totaling some 93,000 users in 110 countries in 10 languages.