News Analysis: Salesforce.com Announces Private Beta Of Chatter

Published on February 17, 2010 by R "Ray" Wang

Chatter Represents SFDC’s Unified Move Into Social

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Announced at the 2009 Dreamforce conference, Chatter represents both a collaboration application and platform.  Software built on the Force.com platform will gain the collaboration capabilities.   Solutions in AppExchange will be able to use profiles, real time streams, and other API’s.   With a 100 customers testing out user experience, scalability, and security, Salesforce.com, moves from vaporware to beta.   Some key features include:

  • Aggregating streams of information. Employees can subscribe to feeds such as internal updates, social networks, and documents.
  • Automating status updates. Users can receive updates from system and user generated alerts.  Alerts can include documents and related links.
  • Enabling secure document sharing. Chatter feeds can be searched to find relevant information.  Document sharing is protected by a secure sharing model from the Force.com platform.

The Bottom Line For Customers – Chatter Represents A First Step Towards Social CRM

Customers seek solutions that bridge the gap between Enterprise 2.0 collaboration with enterprise applications.  Investment in solutions like Chatter fit well with Salesforce.com’s existing list of innovative customers.   Many require more in-depth social capabilities.  Should Chatter be delivered in 2010, customers will win by being able to minimize the number of SaaS platforms,  reduce the related costs of vendor management, and take a first step into Social CRM.

The Bottom Line For Vendors – Chatter Beta Buys Salesforce.com Time To Fend Of Best of Breed Competitors.

Learning from the lessons of Siebel, Marc Benioff does not intend for SalesForce.com to be a one trick pony.  Force.com represented a step to build an ecosystem and extend beyond CRM.  Success in AppExchange proves out the strength of the ecosystem. With Chatter, Salesforce.com establishes a second foothold into the world of Social CRM and Enterprise 2.0.  The pre-announcing in November bought Salesforce.com time to fend off best of  breed collaboration solutions and emerging Social CRM vendors.  Announcing a private beta with 100 customers, not only shows momentum, but also gives Salesforce.com time to prove out the solution.  In any case, they SaaS leader buys time and can keep some of the best of breed solutions temporarily out of its accounts.

Your POV

Are you a Salesforce.com customer?  How will you use chatter?  When do you plan to deploy.  Let us know if you need help with:

  • Building a multi-vendor SaaS strategy
  • Negotiating your Salesforce.com contract
  • Crafting a SaaS integration strategy

Please post or send on to rwang0 at gmail dot com or r at softwaresinsider dot org and we’ll keep your anonymity.

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Copyright © 2010 R Wang and Insider Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.

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