Salesforce sent shockwaves around the business world when it acquired Slack at the beginning of the year. While it was huge news, it certainly wasn’t surprising. After all, Salesforce is the world’s leading CRM platform, so teaming up with one of the most intuitive workplace communication platforms just makes sense. It’s sort of like what happens when an unstoppable force meets… well, another unstoppable force!
There’s been a lot of excitement and speculation around the kinds of features that Salesforce would add to Slack. With all the potential automation, there might be more “slack off” time in our futures. At Dreamforce 2021, Salesforce announced a bevy of new features that will help many departments across virtually any industry.
“Our mindset about work has shifted from a place you go, to something you do,” said Bret Taylor, Salesforce President and COO. “Every company needs a digital HQ to connect its employees, customers, and partners, and thrive in a work-from-anywhere world. Organizations around the world build their digital HQs on Salesforce and Slack so they can work better and grow faster.”
So what exactly can we expect to see in the coming months? sales and marketing teams will benefit heavily from these updates, but everyone will get a piece of the cake.
Sales teams get the lion’s share of shiny new features. It’s not a “quality vs. quantity” deal either. The new features will empower sales teams to collaborate in real time to close more deals — and faster — from anywhere.
With digital deal rooms, sales teams can securely collaborate around a customer or deal cycle in Slack. Files, conversations, and data are centrally located, so teams can easily prepare for meetings, new reps can quickly onboard by accessing account details in Slack, and partners and customers outside of the organization can participate directly to close deals fast.
Deal, Account, and Contact Management will provide sales reps with the ability to access Salesforce records and meeting information right in Slack. Teams see updates automatically posted from Salesforce, and intelligent alerts are served up automatically.
Alerts and Reminders allow reps to create personalized reminders based on deal inactivity or approaching close date, and take action directly from reminders to keep deals current.
Pipeline View gives reps the ability to monitor and manage pipeline health within Slack to ensure deals stay the course and generate more predictable revenue.
All of the above features are expected to be available in the Summer ‘22 release.
The central theme is collaboration, allowing marketing teams and agency partners to work together in a shared digital workspace. Journey planning and execution will be accelerated with in-the-moment collaboration, custom approval workflows, and Einstein recommendations through Marketing Cloud Journeys for Slack.
Marketing, sales, and service will be able to collaborate around a shared 360-degree view of the customer in Slack with Pardot Automation, which also streamlines sales notifications to help teams stay on the same page in real time.
These capabilities are both expected to be available in the Spring ‘22 release. Look for them to provide a boost to your customer acquisition strategy! There are also some exciting new releases for teams assisting existing clients…
When problems arise, it’s important to identify the right employees that can douse the flames quickly. Salesforce announced a new feature for Slack called Case Swarming that automatically creates a Slack channel or thread for service teams to collaborate on complex and high-priority cases or incidents, bringing together the right cross-functional internal employees and potentially external partners to solve problems faster.
A similar feature called Incident Swarming will allow agents to pull together the right cross-functional experts — like legal, devops, and engineering — to collaborate in real time on high-impact service incidents quickly, to keep things going smoothly for customers.
If more subject matter experts are required for a given case or incident, Expert Finder can help agents find the right person to add to a swarm channel based on availability, capacity, and skills. Expert Finder and Case Swarming should be available in the Spring ‘22 release and Incident Swarming is expected to be available in the Summer ‘22 release.
The above is but a preview of many new releases; the full list can be found here. Many of the updates revolve around automated alerts and deeper teamwork abilities. But it’s not just specific departments that are getting updates. Salesforce has also announced similar features for various industries. Let’s look at a couple of examples.
Slack-First Corporate and Investment Banking
Two features are set to be released in Summer ‘22. Financial Services Cloud in Slack allows bankers to access account information and collaborate with deal team members in a single Slack channel. With Interaction Summaries, they’ll be able to create, share, and collaborate on meeting notes without ever leaving Slack.
Slack-First Healthcare and Life Sciences
For the Life Sciences industry, Salesforce has already released Physician, Care Team, & R&D Onboarding, which provides teams with a centralized onboarding experience, along with Employee Engagement for Health Organizations, a feature that enables social channels, real-time updates, wellbeing monitoring, and skill development for employees. Additionally, IT Support for Healthcare and Life Sciences Employees provides easy self-service options that allow employees to spend less time troubleshooting and more time on productive work.
Other industries that can expect shiny new updates with Slack and Salesforce include Philanthropy, Education, and Nonprofits. For instance, there’s a release for government agencies in 2022 that runs in a government-certified cloud environment and provides the same boost to agency productivity, while enabling secure cross-collaboration. With all these improvements to communications and workflows, we can all look forward to some newfound free time!
Learn more about our Slack and Salesforce capabilities.