Dreamforce Daily 2017: Thursday

Dreamforce 2017 Daily

Level Training Field

This may be the final Dreamforce daily 2017 update, but there is no wind-down in the pace of the announcements. Jenny took in the Salesforce Admins Keynote*, while Dorian took Trailhead: both hugely important subjects on the Salesforce Roadmap. Making the technology more accessible, equipping users with the tools to build and training to use their own platform is key to Salesforce’s success and growth. Here’s what we heard yesterday in San Francisco.

Dorian on the Trailhead Keynote

Barely three years from it’s inception, Trailhead was given it’s own keynote event this year. Alongside the ubiquitous ‘Trailblazer’ branding, and the ‘we are all Trailblazers’ theme of Marc Benioff’s opening keynote it’s a pretty clear indication of how important this free online learning tool has become to Salesforce’s marketing message and future strategy.

Sarah Franklin, the GM of Trailhead, kicked off with some pretty impressive statistics: 2.5 million Trailblazer Community members, with over 4 million badges earned in the last year alone.  320 badges are now offered, and much was made of the new ‘superbadges’ that have been developed to add more complexity and reflect real world project work.

This was cleverly segued into a sobering series of slides which covered the increasing cost of higher education and student debt, the skills gap and the lack of diversity in the tech industry.  Developing a theme that ‘reinvention is the new normal’, there was also discussion of the decreasing shelf-life of work based skills, more frequent job / career changes and the importance of lifelong learning.  Salesforce is clearly making a big pitch for Trailhead to be seen as the answer to these systemic issues.

So much for the context – but what was new?  There were some useful improvements to the Trailhead User Interface, and a nice feature that will allow people to merge all the Trailhead points and badges from multiple Salesforce accounts, but the biggest splash was the arrival of myTrailhead.  This gives organisations a CMS-type interface to build their own private, custom trails on the platform, with configurable updates and dashboards they can use to analyse uptake and progress inside their Salesforce Org.

The new features were impressive and slickly demonstrated.  However, having been told that Salesforce have been using myTrailhead internally for the last 18 months, it was a little surprising to read elsewhere that it is not expected to be available until the second half of 2018, and that there is no indication of pricing.  It’ll be interesting to see how this develops, but organisations may well end up implementing their own solutions in the meantime.

Jenny Bamber on Admin Keynote

Jenny BamberSummarising this most energetic of keynotes goes something like this….

Clicks not Code

No Software

Point, Click, Close

OK so there was more. Parker Harris took this one, and talked through the ease of migration to LEX, the simplicity of customisation and the gained knowledge through Trailhead. There was more still: Custom home pages – the ability to decide which reports to show, Calendar Sharing and Object Calendars (actually one of my favourites), Flow components, Favourites – which enable you to favourite records, list view etc and then access it anywhere in the org. We also saw demoed declarative customisation for LEX with drag and drop mobile apps, the creation of custom components, and their equally user friendly installation. The list goes on…

What unites all of the above? Of course, they are all features that enable the ease of customisation without code. Which in turn provides Admins with more and more power on the platform.

To conclude? Salesforce Admins: we are truly becoming the VIPs in the Salesforce Eco-System and Economy.

Dreamforce Daily Thursday
By Amy Grenham
9 November 2017
SalesforceThe Good Systems Blog

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