Salesforce: a leader in CRM with shortcomings for document-centric processes
25 May 2022
As a former Salesforce end-user, I believe it is fair to say that Salesforce is a best-of-breed platform for Customer Relationship Management (CRM).
Salesforce does everything very well when it comes to marketing, sales, and customer service. However, there are 3 main drawbacks to Salesforce you may have experienced:
1. It costs a pretty penny
Not only are user licenses expensive, but file storage too. What is file storage you might ask? Over time users in Salesforce will accumulate large volumes of content such as emails, attachments, presentations, and further storage-hungry media such as videos. Just imagine your customers sending 4K videos to your service cloud! Once you exceed your file storage entitlement you will pay a hefty subscription fee for each additional gigabyte and month.
2. It is a closed shop
By keeping the above-mentioned content within Salesforce, you are creating an information silo. How do you collaborate on content with users outside of Salesforce and contacts outside of your organization? Are you going to produce copies on file shares or send out copies by email? This would be an absolute nightmare from an information governance perspective. Are you adding users to Salesforce to give them access? Probably not as we established already that this is a very costly option.
3. It is not best-of-breed for content-centric collaboration
Salesforce was never designed as a content-centric collaboration and productivity platform, I cannot blame this on Salesforce. For that exact reason, the features Salesforce offers to collaborate and govern content such as documents can only be rated as rudimentary.
How can I tackle this?
Stating the obvious is easy. However, I also want to offer a perspective on how to address these challenges. The key to this is integration. Integrating Salesforce with a best-of-
breed platform for collaboration and productivity will not only mitigate but effectively eliminate those drawbacks.
Let me explain this in more detail based on the most popular best-of-breed platform in that category, namely Microsoft 365.
1. It does not cost a pretty penny anymore
- When integrating Salesforce with SharePoint Online (which is part of your Microsoft 365 subscription) content can be stored in your SharePoint instead of the Salesforce file storage.
- SharePoint storage is already available and paid for and even if you need additional storage, it costs a fraction (~ 95% cheaper) when compared to Salesforce file storage.
- Users can access content from Salesforce directly in their familiar Microsoft 365 apps (e.g. Teams, SharePoint) and do not need a user license for Salesforce.
2. It is a seamless experience
- Collaborating within and even outside the organization becomes easy. Sharing, working on the same content at the same time (co-authoring), and keeping track of versions and changes, notifications, and approvals will boost collaboration and productivity.
- No more duplicates and ungoverned copies of business-critical content. It is now governed by Microsoft 365 to ensure robust security, retention, and compliance.
3. Together we are strong
- Enabling Salesforce-centric content with purebred collaboration and productivity capabilities of Microsoft 365 will pave the way to more interactive and efficient teamwork.
- The best part of it is, team members can be anywhere. Team members without access to Salesforce, colleagues working in different locations, or even people working in different organizations. Since the pandemic, we all know how valuable it is to be able to work together as a virtual team.
If you would like to know more about how to unlock the best potential of both Salesforce and Microsoft 365, please get in touch with us.