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TechnologySep 20, 2018

Looking Forward to Dreamforce 2018

Brian Hafferkamp

Next week, I will be journeying to San Francisco to attend Dreamforce, one of the largest tech conferences in the world. Last year, this event attracted over 170,000 attendees from 91 countries, not to mention 10 million online viewers and featured cameos from the likes of Michelle Obama and Ashton Kutcher. Needless to say, I am looking forward to learning from and collaborating with Salesforce experts from all over the world.

Considering how much Salesforce has grown in the last decade, it would be easy to get lost in the more than 2,700 sessions that address every nook and cranny of the Salesforce ecosystem. I decided to focus my time on a few specific areas where Credera has recently worked.

custom development

Many of our clients are concerned about customizing the Salesforce platform to meet their specific business needs. In order to achieve this, we have implemented custom user interfaces with Visualforce and Lightning Components, created complex logic using Apex and other declarative processes, and integrated Salesforce with a variety of outside applications.

The most recent addition to the Salesforce custom development world is Developer Experience, commonly referred to as SFDX, or more simply DX. DX has dramatically improved the software development lifecycle in Salesforce, making version control-based development feasible with the introduction of a powerful command line tool. Along with version control, it is now possible to implement continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) with the improved packaging that came along with DX. I am excited to learn how Salesforce plans to build on and improve packaging in DX, as this was a major pain point for a previous client of mine.

Here are a few sessions I’m looking forward to:

marketing cloud

Salesforce Marketing Cloud (SFMC) is another valuable tool in the Salesforce ecosystem. Credera has had the opportunity to help several clients use SFMC to deliver data-driven, personalized marketing. We enjoy partnering with clients to help them leverage Salesforce insights and tools to create effective email campaigns, craft customer-specific messages with Ad Studio, and manage the overall customer experience with Journey Builder. At Dreamforce, I want to continue learning about data-driven marketing with Salesforce Data Management Platform (DMP), a tool that captures and uses consumer data to build more effective customer experiences. Additionally, I am interested in learning more about Email Studio, a drag and drop tool that allows users to create custom and personalized emails.

Here are a few sessions I’m looking forward to:

einstein analytics

Einstein Analytics is an area that personally interests me, though I have not yet had the opportunity to work with it myself. In a world of AI and Big Data, it makes sense that Salesforce has been investing so much time and effort into Einstein. Einstein Analytics has applications throughout the Salesforce ecosystem; it is used to create chatbots, analyze data to drive marketing decisions, and even to suggest what Dreamforce sessions I might be interested in. And, aligning with the Salesforce paradigm, Einstein is easily accessible by any user through various point-and-click tools.

Here are a few sessions I’m looking forward to:

field service lightning

Lastly, I have the privilege of presenting during my first year at Dreamforce. Though it is not a keynote or workshop (yet), I will be co-leading a roundtable discussion with Chris Morgan, the Salesforce administrator at The Container Store. Chris and I, along with a mixed team of Credera consultants and Container Store developers, recently implemented a Field Service Lightning (FSL) solution for their organization. During the roundtable, we will discuss why The Container Store chose to use FSL, what tips we have for implementing and integrating the application, and the value it added for the company. Details for this session can be found here: Trailblazer Networking: FSL in Retail featuring The Container Store.

wrap up

I could not be more excited about this opportunity. I will be in a unique position to learn about the cutting-edge of Salesforce and present at one of the largest tech conferences in the world … and it doesn’t hurt that Metallica is performing, with an after party featuring MC Hammer.

If you have an extra pair of hammer pants, or if you’re looking for help with Salesforce development, reach out to us at findoutmore@credera.com. We are practitioners, not salespeople, so you’ll speak with an actual Credera consultant. We look forward to chatting to see how we might be able to help.