As Salesforce.com and Microsoft continue to compete for online CRM market share, each company is adding new features and functionality to their platforms. Both have recently come out with new feature sets for their respective solutions.
Salesforce Winter ‘12 New Features
Salesforce.com has released over 150 new features in the Winter ‘12 release. Salesforce.com has provided a variety of ways to learn about Winter ‘12, including PDFs, videos and a Winter ’12 Facebook Page tab. There is also a Facebook photo album that’s used as a slide show to display new features.
Here’s a selection of some of the new features.
Chatter Approvals – Ability to approve business processes, such as discounts, within the Chatter feed.
Permission Sets – Administrators can give users wider access to data without modifying Profiles. Users can have multiple Permission Sets.
Schema Builder – This beta feature lets a Salesforce administrator design a schema using a drag and drop UI.
Chatter for Sharepoint – Chatter feeds can be embedded in a SharePoint MySite or TeamSite.
Dynamic Dashboard Features – Dashboards can now be filtered in real time.
Mobile Dashboards – Users can view dashboards on an iPad and zoom in on charts.
Salesforce for Outlook 64-bit – Added support for 64-bit operating systems along with productivity improvements.
Social Contacts – Social data from Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can now be included in Contact records.
Customer Groups – Information can be securely shared with customers from within Chatter.
Siteforce – Customers can develop a CMS (content management system) type Website right on the Force.com platform.
Microsoft Dynamics CRM November 2011 Service Update New Features
Microsoft has published details of the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Service Update, including a video.
Unified Microsoft Dynamics and Office 365 – CRM users have access to the Office online applications – Office Professional Plus 2010, Exchange Online, Sharepoint Online and Lync Online.
Activity feeds – Users can follow important business events and activities in a microblog format. Users can follow people and records that are relevant to them. Users can see a global timeline view or they can look at record specific views.
Windows Phone 7 Activity Feeds Application – CRM users can work with Activity Feeds while they are away from the office. Users can also view Account, Lead and Opportunity information on a Windows Phone. One click directions are available via Bing Maps from Accounts and Contacts. The forms on the mobile phone are configurable.
Along with this service update, Microsoft has announced plans for future releases, including: unified Office 365 provisioning, billing and administration; identity federation (integration with local active directory); in-region data center disaster recovery; new business intelligence capabilities; enhanced dialogs; enhance deduplication capabilities. Microsoft also plans to support Firefox, Safari and Chrome on both Mac and PC some time in the first half of 2012.