Salesforce Customers Investing In Multiple Clouds, Report Finds

Bluewolf consulting has released its fourth customer feedback report on Salesforce. It finds that the use of multiple clouds is increasing.

their own ranks. Attending to the human engineering side of the problem would increase the value of their Salesforce customer relationship applications, they said.

One of those best practices is a methodical cleansing of data so that one view of the customer can emerge, as opposed to conflicting data and conflicting views, the report said. To do that, it's necessary that someone assess data value at the start of its collection, and then find and eliminate any manual date-entry errors upon entry.

Once good data is acquired it can be enhanced or expanded by adding a customer's DUN number (the nine-digit unique identifier that Dun & Bradstreet assigns each company globally), allowing different parts of the company to be recognized around the world, even if operating under a slightly different name.

Salesforce customers are becoming increasingly adept at making data enhancement and other additions to their Salesforce applications, the report said. In 2014, 44% of customers released a change to their Salesforce instance at least once a month. In 2015 that figure jumped to 64%, making such monthly changes and additions. The number of companies making weekly changes is still small, but that number increased by a factor of three this year, the report said, without naming a figure.

"The best companies have an established cloud governance board and have implemented application lifecycle management (ALM) tools in order to evaluate user suggestions, manage releases, and provide training to affected users," the Bluewolf authors wrote. Having a board and ALM tools differentiates some Salesforce users. They are more likely to report revenue growth and improved customer experience, crediting their use of Salesforce applications.

While the Bluewolf study attributed many gains to Salesforce adoption, it also made clear that SaaS alone isn't enough. Enterprise users need to have the same sound software infrastructure practices in place with the changes to Salesforce applications that they made with their custom applications. And revenue gains may stem not only from the use of the application, but also from the degree of success customers have in constantly customizing them to their changing business conditions.

And that takes company investment. "Those that budget for innovation and governance prosper," concluded Bluewolf's Steve Faris, chief platform officer.