Soon after founding Salesforce, CTO Parker Harris forcefully argued to CEO Marc Benioff that the new company should avoid building a channel.
"Marc, whatever you do, we do not want consultants," Harris said he told his co-founder twenty years ago.
Harris wanted the innovative cloud-based CRM to be a no-code platform, and systems integrators and consultants would ruin that vision, "because people are going to write code."
Thankfully, Benioff rejected his bad advice, Salesforce's CTO told thousands of ecosystem partners attending a keynote Tuesday at the Dreamforce conference in San Francisco.
[Related: Salesforce Dreamforce Keynote: AI, Integration, Alicia Keys And Protestors]
"We need you," Harris told those consultants he once hoped to shun.
Harris now sees partners who "speak the language of the customer" as vital to the company's strategy of extending into industry verticals. And Salesforce especially needs SIs as it leverages its MuleSoft platform to bring in data from Oracle and SAP ERPs, enabling implementation of a "single source of truth" concept presented through the Customer Truth 360 tooling unveiled earlier that day.
As the CRM leader chases Benioff's ambitious goal to double the business over the next few years, recruiting new partners, enabling existing ones to scale, and encouraging startups to form is a larger priority than ever before. The company has previously said it's aiming to build a channel of 250,000 services partners.
To that end, Salesforce channel leaders outlined specific initiatives Tuesday around enhanced advisory services, a new Architect Certification Program, expanded partner learning, and new resources to help customers identify implementation partners best-suited to their aims.
Tyler Prince, Salesforce's executive vice president of industries, innovation and partners, told representatives of the consultancies, digital agencies and ISVs attending the partner keynote that Salesforce is focused on helping them meet the increasing demands of customers in an era of rapid disruption.
"Salesforce is a different kind of company. I hope we're a different kind of partner to you as well," Prince said.
The opportunity for Salesforce's channel is massive, Prince noted, citing an IDC report that predicts by 2024 the Salesforce ecosystem will generate six times more revenue than Salesforce itself.
"Most of that is represented by solutions and services you provide," Prince told partners.
Kai Hsiung, chief growth officer at Silverline, was one of those in attendance, as he's been for every Dreamforce partner keynote.
To eventually enable the 250,000 partners needed to support Benioff's $28 billion revenue target, "the partner program will have to grow and adjust based on the different partner types out there," Hsiung told CRN.
Salesforce is making a valiant effort to that, Hsiung said.
"The next step is to figure out how to rightsize the enablement based on partner size, industry focus, product focus, geographic focus," Hsiung said. And "they are very much in tune with the feedback partners like Silverline are providing them."
That's why this year Salesforce has introduced so many new partner programs and initiatives, while also ending programs that became less relevant, he added.
Lori Steele, Salesforce's executive vice president for global customer success and professional services, earned a round of applause when telling the keynote's attendees: "our purpose as an organization is not to compete with the partner ecosystem, but to work together, to collaborate and bring the best of Salesforce to our customers."
Currently, half of Salesforce professional services are delivered through partners. "That's good, but it's not good enough," Steele said.
Customers are "really looking for us to come together with shared goals, shared measures," she said.
To deliver more value through its channel, Salesforce is implementing a new engagement model through which Salesforce's advisory services arm looks to collaborate closer with the channel. Salesforce will bring partners into engagements at critical junctures in the customer lifecycle and work closely with them to ensure challenging integration projects are successful, Steele said.
Salesforce wants to leverage the capabilities of partners and complement their skills, while "doing the right thing for customers at the right time," she told Dreamforce attendees.
Enablement is another important component of that vision, she said, and the company is doing "brilliant things with Trailhead."
That Salesforce learning platform isn't just about training, but also bringing best practices to partners and offering them opportunities to shadow Salesforce engineers in the field.
Randy Davis, a partner at Chicago-based Salesforce consultancy Sikich, said Salesforce execs delivered "an inspiring message to the whole partner community" at the keynote.
That message is reflected in an increased investment in partner programs, Davis told CRN.
"As they grow, they need to rely on partners more," Davis said. "It's extremely important partners are enabled with the right training and resources to make customers successful."
Earlier this year, Salesforce launched Trailhead for Partners, a learning system aiming to help consultants develop the talent they need to fuel their growth. Building upon that, a Partner Learning Camp was introduced at this year's Dreamforce, powered by the customized myTrailhead platform.
Prince also suggested to partners they familiarize themselves with innovations on the AppExchange marketplace.
"At a rapid rate, customers are going on the AppExchange not only to find cool apps, but to find a consultant," Prince said. "Use this to your advantage."
See the original post here:
- BitCherry To Build a Trusted Distributed Business Ecosystem - Coinspeaker - February 6th, 2020
- Building a Worker Co-op Ecosystem: Lessons from the Big Apple - Nonprofit Quarterly - February 6th, 2020
- Letters: Healthcare industry needs its own digital ecosystem - ModernHealthcare.com - February 6th, 2020
- The new financial ecosystem of big banks and big tech - ValueWalk - February 6th, 2020
- To protect ecosystem, improve balance on critical regulatory panel - theday.com - February 6th, 2020
- How to fall in love with the Apple ecosystem all over again -- spend more money and buy new stuff - ZDNet - February 6th, 2020
- Artificial intelligence requires trusted data, and a healthy DataOps ecosystem - ZDNet - February 6th, 2020
- Preserve the Sacred Lands of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem - CounterPunch - February 6th, 2020
- Organizations only protect 60% of their business ecosystem, Accenture finds - CIO Dive - February 6th, 2020
- IBM: building a digital ecosystem to support the mine of the future - Mining Global - Mining News, Magazine and Website - February 6th, 2020
- Structo Partners with Pro3dure to Extend applications in the Velox ecosystem - Manufactur3D - February 6th, 2020
- Epic and about 60 hospital chains come out against rules that would make it easier to share medical info - CNBC - February 6th, 2020
- [2020 Outlook] Indian startup ecosystem raring to break new ground in the new year - YourStory - January 2nd, 2020
- [2020 Outlook] What investors expect for the Indian startup ecosystem in the year ahead - YourStory - January 2nd, 2020
- Chuck Todd Finds All the Disinformation In 'Ecosystem Problem' on the Right - NewsBusters - January 2nd, 2020
- THE CONNECTIVITY B2B ECOSYSTEM: How 5G and next-gen networks are transforming the role telecoms play in enterp - Business Insider India - January 2nd, 2020
- Looking back at the Indian startup ecosystem in 2019 - YourStory - January 2nd, 2020
- 2019 In Review: Key Milestones That Indian Startup Ecosystem Achieved This Year - Inc42 Media - January 2nd, 2020
- Vivo, OPPO and Xiaomi Partner to Bring New Wireless File Transfer System to Global Consumers - PRNewswire - January 2nd, 2020
- Bringing start-ups and corporates together to foster maritime innovation - Riviera Maritime Media - January 2nd, 2020
- Regional disparities in the Indian innovation ecosystem - Forbes India - January 2nd, 2020
- Fixing the rot in Indias financial ecosystem - The New Indian Express - January 2nd, 2020
- The inside story of the AppStore, Salesforces Marc Benioff, and a gifted URL to Steve Jobs - 9to5Mac - January 2nd, 2020
- 2019 In Review: The Best Of Inc42 - Inc42 Media - January 2nd, 2020
- For 2020, Cross River Bank Says It Will Increase Collaboration to Grow New Jersey's Fintech Ecosystem - njtechweekly.com - January 2nd, 2020
- As healthcare moves to the home, CISOs can't be 'Dr. No' - MobiHealthNews - January 2nd, 2020
- The story of why Marc Benioff gifted the AppStore.com domain to Steve Jobs - TechCrunch - January 2nd, 2020
- NBCs Ben Collins to Chris Hayes: Trump Retweets Shady Accounts Because He Listens to Alternate Ecosystem Where Hes God Emperor - Mediaite - January 2nd, 2020
- The moon and Earths ecosystem - OrissaPOST - January 2nd, 2020
- Frontline Systems Launches Analytic Solver V2020: Tool for Analytics-Powered Decision Models in the Microsoft Ecosystem - PR Web - January 2nd, 2020
- Time to stop playing with acronyms and create vibrant eco system in North East - Economic Times - December 21st, 2019
- What You Can Do to Build an Innovative Ecosystem - CMSWire - December 21st, 2019
- TrueFort Expands Fortified Ecosystem with Infoblox and Others - Business Wire - December 21st, 2019
- Driving up the value of AI starts with building an ecosystem - CIO Dive - December 21st, 2019
- OKEx Research: Ecosystem, and Innovative Products - newsBTC - December 21st, 2019
- The Unter-class is the Whole Ecosystem - Fairplanet - December 21st, 2019
- Paige Raises $45M to Expand AI-Native Digital Pathology Ecosystem to Accelerate Biomarker Discovery - HIT Consultant - December 21st, 2019
- Dotscience Gains Momentum in the MLOps Ecosystem and Accelerates Deployment of Machine Learning Models into Production with New Technology... - December 21st, 2019
- Rakshit Shetty talks about 'Avane Srimannarayana' and the eco-system that enables his work - The Hindu - December 21st, 2019
- Are Apple Macs worth the money? - scallywagandvagabond - December 21st, 2019
- Silicon Labs and Z-Wave Alliance Expand Smart Home Ecosystem by Opening Z-Wave to Silicon and Stack Suppliers - PRNewswire - December 21st, 2019
- Transforming the insurance sector to an Open API Ecosystem - Finextra - December 21st, 2019
- Apple Issues New Blow To Google With This Bold Security Move - Forbes - December 21st, 2019
- Why the $52K Mac Pro is important for everyone who cares about the survival of the Mac ecosystem - ZDNet - December 21st, 2019
- The Top 3 Fintech Stocks to Buy in 2020 - Motley Fool - December 21st, 2019
- GW addresses report recommendations to improve research - GW Hatchet - December 21st, 2019
- Hyundai teases flying car concept ahead of CES - Autoblog - December 21st, 2019
- N.S. won't protect land with 'globally rare' ecosystem that company eyes for golf resort - CBC.ca - December 21st, 2019
- OPPO announces three initiatives to co-build new intelligent service ecosystem with developers & partners - United News of India - December 21st, 2019
- Ecosystem | Definition of Ecosystem by Merriam-Webster - November 21st, 2019
- Ecosystem - Wikipedia - November 21st, 2019
- Has Arm Discovered the Ecosystem Keys? - The Next Platform - November 21st, 2019
- Integrating Global Seagrass and Mangrove Ecosystem Observations - Eos - November 21st, 2019
- The collapse of the information ecosystem poses profound risks for humanity - The Guardian - November 21st, 2019
- Ten Predictions On The Future Of Work, VC And The Tech Ecosystem For 2020 And Beyond - Forbes - November 21st, 2019
- Galt Earth Day: Lucero Farms partners with the ecosystem - The Galt Herald - November 21st, 2019
- Why Your Organization Needs an Innovation Ecosystem - Harvard Business Review - November 21st, 2019
- Ecosystem Kickstarter is a cardboard structure that fights soil erosion - Dezeen - November 21st, 2019
- Sapiens Expands Its Partnership Ecosystem With Lightico to Enhance Digital Customer Interactions for the Insurance Market - MarTech Series - November 21st, 2019
- How human and animal excrement harm the planet's ecosystem - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists - November 21st, 2019
- Working in Partnership to Power the News Ecosystem - Reuters - November 21st, 2019
- Mellanox, JVP To Develop Haifa's Tech And Innovation Ecosystem With $14M Investment | Technology News - NoCamels - Israeli Innovation News - November 21st, 2019
- Oracle's Aubrey Hawes on Open Banking and ecosystem building - Tearsheet - November 21st, 2019
- Vermont Futures Project recommends strengthening the innovation ecosystem - Vermont Biz - October 24th, 2019
- Android 9 was installed on less than a quarter of the ecosystem as Android 10 launched - The Verge - October 24th, 2019
- Leave those fall leaves for a nicer lawn and a healthier ecosystem - Greater Greater Washington - October 24th, 2019
- Innovation and safety: creating a safer road transport ecosystem - Intelligent Transport - October 24th, 2019
- Inmar Expands Innovator Ecosystem with Acquisition of Digitus Solutions - Yahoo Finance - October 24th, 2019
- Plasan Introduces the StreetDrone Open Autonomy Platform to Israel - Army Technology - October 24th, 2019
- Investing In The Nonprofit Ecosystem - Forbes - October 24th, 2019
- 35 New Integration Partners Join Thriving Clio App Ecosystem - Yahoo Finance - October 24th, 2019
- Trump Wants Loggers to Tear Through This Pristine Forest. If It Happens, the Ecosystem Will Be in Chaos. - Mother Jones - October 24th, 2019
- Treating the IT Ecosystem as an Actual Ecosystem - MarketScale Industries - October 24th, 2019
- Identity and Access Management for Healthcare getting it right to support clinical workflows Part Two - HealthLeaders Media - October 24th, 2019
- Understanding Startup Investment Dynamics Within The Logistics Ecosystem - Benzinga - October 24th, 2019
- Understanding the Decentralized Finance Ecosystem: Part 2 Top DeFi Projects - Bitcoin & Crypto Guide - Altcoin Buzz - October 24th, 2019
- Indian startups have raised a record $11.3B this year - TechCrunch - October 24th, 2019
- Global Access Control Ecosystem, 2019 | 5 Year Forecasts of Unit Sales & Revenues for Smart Door Locks, Video Doorbells, and Smart Garage Door... - October 24th, 2019
- Restoration Agriculture: A New Approach to Growing Food - WCAI - October 24th, 2019
- Yurok Tribes Connection to Klamath River Weakens as Ecosystem Declines - The LumberJack - October 24th, 2019