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Salesforce Spring ’17 Einstein, Service Cloud & Communities Update Review

Salesforce Einstein

Salesforce has been buying up AI companies in the last 12 months and we are now starting to see these feature trickle into the Salesforce platform with the Spring ‘17 release.

Sales Cloud Einstein

Sales Cloud will get the first set of AI features on the platform.  Salesforce is introducing these features slowly as I think they are busy working on the real production ready version of AI which we will likely see in 2018.

Some of the features that AI does bring this year though is:

  • Automatic logging of your emails to the appropriate Account, Contact, Opportunity record.
  • Automatic lead scoring (0-99) based on the attributes of the Lead record
  • Smart insights on your Opportunities (smart alerts, predictions)
  • Account Insights through news and key business developments

Service:

The big one for Service is the new Lightning Console.  This makes Lightning a real thing for customers using Classic Console apps.  (Though the migration between these two would likely not be a quick project…)

The other new feature for Service is that Knowledge is now available in Lightning.

There is not much else to report within the Service Cloud, but do not underestimate these two new features.  They are a massive deal for Service Cloud customers as it brings them onto the Lightning platform.

Communities

Spring ‘17 brings a large amount of changes to the Communities product.  This is a product that Salesforce intends to grow and sell to new and existing customers.  It is a powerful product that can allow your customers to interact with your business directly as well as enabling a community around a product or your brand.

Some of the new updates to Communities that I think are worth mentioning are:

  • If you are on a version of a community template prior to Oct 2015, then you will need to upgrade your template.
  • Lightning Bolt gets more functionality.  Lightning Bolt is what Salesforce call managed packages on the AppExchange for custom Community offerings.  This will make setting up a community for your business processes even easier.  It will mean that your requirements might have already been built and optimised by one of Salesforce’s many ISV’s or consulting partners.
  • Custom Lightning Components can now be created specifically for communities.
  • Reports and Dashboards can now be added to communities pages
  • Create new records from lookups.  Just like your internal users do in Lightning, this is now available to your community users
  • Tasks are now available in Communities
  • Kanban modifications can now be given to community users.  This is a feature that was mentioned in a previous blog post of mine.  It will mean list views are able to be visualised and customised by community users.
  • Community Workspace is now the hub for all activity relating to your community.  All the tools are now accessible in the one place: builder, administrator and your dashboards.

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