Salesforce: Microsoft Doesn’t Get Social or Mobile

Salesforce is spending less time criticising its competitors these days, but at its Dreamforce conference this week it did make a big dig at Microsoft for failing to capitalise on the social and mobile trends that have dominated the technology industry over the past ten years.

During Dreamforce, attendees were barraged with positive sentiment about the new Salesforce1 offering, which merges the company’s customer relationship management (CRM) with its various platforms, with a load of new APIs to help the company achieve its dream of connecting everything.  The product moves Salesforce further from its CRM speciality and makes a play to become a more general platform – which of course is where Microsoft is strong.

As Salesforce makes a play for Microsoft’s turf with Salesforce1, its staff argued that Microsoft has not only missed the boat with social and mobile, but it is now getting left behind in the cloud CRM and platform spaces.

Salesforce back to bashing competition

“They don’t get social and I don’t think they really get mobile,” Alex Dayon, president for applications and platform at Salesforce, and one-time leader of InStranet, told TechWeekEurope.

“I think their platform life is disconnected from their CRM life. That’s what I think is really powerful with Salesforce1: the best CRM is now the best platform.

“We are looking at the market from a different perspective than our competitors…. we are really focused on customer engagement, whereas most of our competitors are stuck into the infrastructure and selling the database…they are not really about what it means for the customer.

“That’s where we are very different as a vendor, that really our focus is on the experience, rather than the technology itself.”

Microsoft has some social plays, with systems like Yammer, whilst its mobile proposition Windows Phone is becoming increasingly popular. Its Dynamics CRM is one of Salesforce’s main rival products.

It had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.

Salesforce was once openly aggressive about competitors, having had open spats with both Microsoft and Oracle.

CEO Marc Benioff said yesterday he was on a “detente” with his Oracle counterpart and former boss Larry Ellison.

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Thomas Brewster

Tom Brewster is TechWeek Europe's Security Correspondent. He has also been named BT Information Security Journalist of the Year in 2012 and 2013.

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