Spring 2010 Salesforce.com Release is Here

Written by ShamrockCRM on February 9, 2010 – 8:36 pm

Salesforce Spring 2010

The Salesforce.com Spring 2010 release is finally upon us and you are probably wondering what you can enable / setup within Salesforce.com to better streamline your business. I will briefly go through many of the top features (IMO) and let you know what to expect.

Real Time Quotes – This is a new feature that should have been around a long time ago, because most companies have already created their own quoting process by now and it will be difficult to convert to this new Salesforce functionality. Multiple quotes can be associated to one Opportunity, data can be synchronized between the Opportunity and Quotes, and PDF’s can be easily generated. I am really not too impressed by this, because there really are some excellent AppExchange products out there that already do this.

New Opportunity UI (User Interface) – This is actually pretty cool, but it is currently in Pilot mode and must be enabled. The idea behind this is that there are certain fields on an Opportunity, no matter what business you are in, that are vitally important, such as Stage and Amount. This UI places these fields directly on the top of the page and makes them highly visible and accessible. I like it.

Salesforce Mobile Lite for ALL Organizations, including Group – Congrats everyone! If you haven’t been able to access Salesforce Mobile before, you can now. Go to the BlackBerry and Iphone stores now and download and customize this app for your organization!

Rich Text Area fields – Once again, Pilot, but long needed in Salesforce.com. Contact your Salesforce reps for this.

Branded Event Invitiations – Salesforce has always neglected email marketing / email templates in Salesforce.com. You can now place your logos on outgoing calendar events, therefore branding them.

Entitlement Management (Service) – Salesforce is now making a BIG push for the service aspects of its product, ie. the Service Cloud. Entitlement management is a newly released feature, which will be highly beneficial for support companies that are actively managing Service Level Agreements (SLA’s). You can quickly identify if customers have support agreements, what level they are subscribed to, and the KPI’s that your customer support reps must adhere to. Workflows can be built to enforce these KPI’s and everything can be tracked with reports. There are additional components related to Entitlement Management to facilitate additional aspects, such as service contracts and milestones. This is a really big feature and is something that needed to be custom built and highly customized before. Let me know if you need assistance with setting this up.

Salesforce Answers – Just like Yahoo Answers, but built into the Salesforce platform. This will be built directly into your Salesforce community and will allow users to ask questions, answer questions, and vote on answers.

New Salesforce.com User Interface Design – Salesforce has been a little behind the times with their design when comparing their website to other SAAS / Web 2.0 sites, such as Twitter, Facebook, Google, etc. They have decided to upgrade their overall design. This will not be available immediately and will need to be enabled. It won’t be enabled by default. I hope this new design is faster. It seems that Chrome is not supported.

New Report Builder!!!!! Developer Only :( – This is going to be revolutionary. Instead of tons of steps in a report wizard, this will be one, all encompassing report builder that is easy to use for everyone, with an excellent preview mode. Developer mode only, which is saddening.

Salesforce Report Builder

Custom Dashboard Tables – Outstanding! The table dashboard component now allows you to display 4 columns instead of 2. Previously, you could only display an Account Name and a Dollar value for an example. Now you could also display the Country field and Account #. This is a nice improvement.

SOQL Enhancements – This is huge. Now, advanced SOQL functions can be used, such as GROUP BY, HAVING, AVG, MAX, MIN, SUM, COUNT_DISTINCT, etc. There are also many additional Date filters. Why was this not there before? Do you know how much time this would have saved all developers if this previously existed? I am very pleased with this. There are also ANTI JOINS and SEMI JOINS.

Debug Log Improvements – Debug logs have drastically improved, which is a small, but very nice improvement if you are working with APEX code.

Change Sets and Cloud Deployment (beta) – Great idea, but needs a lot of work. I have rarely been able to use this feature successfully, because of minor errors. It will allow you to deploy sets of code, reports, fields, layouts, etc from the Sandbox to Production and vice versa from directly within the user interface, instead of Eclipse’s IDE or the awful ANT migration tool. This is similar to SAP transports.

Multilevel Master Detail Relationships – You can now create multiple levels deep. ex. Project, Requests for Bids, Actual Bid Submitted, Review of Bid could be multiple master detail relationships.

My Domain – Receive your own subdomain name directly on the Salesforce.com servers. Limited release only.

Take a detailed look through the Spring 2010 Release Notes.

Let me know if you have any questions about any of the new features or if you need any information about how they might apply to you or how you could enable them.

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