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Dreamfactory offers a new set of utlities for Salesforce users

DreamFactory Utilities for AppExchange is now available for all Salesforce users. ‘Utilities’ is designed specifically for Salesforce system admins and integrators to make their lives, and the lives of other users a whole lot easier.

Utilities includes three essentials apps:

• SnapShot – save hours of time on meta data manipulation
1. Take an Object SnapShot and visually browse the schema of any Salesforce ORG, including standard objects, custom objects, fields, picklists and more
2. Take a Profile SnapShot and visually browse the user profile information of any Salesforce ORG, including Field Level Security, Object Permissions, Record Types, etc.

• Monarch – move your data anywhere, share it with anyone
1. Moves and merges data, allows users to securely move, share data with others, or port it to QuickBase, Cisco Connect or an Excel sheet for extended collaboration
2. Backing up data is costly on Salesforce – with Monarch users can move data over to Amazon, where it can be stored a lot less expensively

• Tabletop -Browse, visualize and drill down on data sets. Create as many views as you want and selectively share these views with other departments, partners and customers

The Salesforce Education department has licensed SnapShot and DreamFactory Utilities as part of its training program for new customers, and Salesforce’s internal Global Professional Services is using SnapShot as a pilot program currently.

Traditional CRM vendor fights back by integrating SharePoint, Outlook

Traditional CRM vendor fights back by integrating SharePoint, Outlook

Microsoft may be engaged in a price war with Salesforce.com, but traditional server-based CRM vendors have hardly rolled over and cried uncle. Today, CDC Software announced that it is taking on the cloud vendors by one-upping Microsoft and tightly integrating with Microsoft’s back office apps including SharePoint.

CDC Software’s next iteration of its Pivotal CRM app includes embedded Microsoft SharePoint and Office applications. Pivotal CRM 6.0, which is based on Microsoft .NET, includes SharePoint Server 2007. CDC says this enables companies to easily deploy SharePoint Server 2007 with SharePoint Designer 2007. In this way, IT professionals can set up personalized portals based on roles. A portal can be created for sales people, customer support representatives or others. End users, including mobile users, can also personalize their home pages.

As you would expect, Pivotal is highly-integrated with Microsoft Outlook (including calendaring, tasks and e-mail), too. Users can see Pivotal contacts in their Outlook contacts database and the product supports bi-direction synching with the Outlook contacts feature called “Activities.” Users that rely on Outlook as their main contact database can continue to use it as an interface with Pivotal, even while Pivotal handles the sales force automation heavy lifting on the back end.

Now here’s the kicker. Pivotal is an old fashioned server-based CRM system, using a traditional software licensing model without a SaaS component. While Microsoft and Salesforce.com are slugging it out for about $45 - $100 per user/per month on a subscription basis, Pivotal 6.0 starts at $1500 a user, a company spokesperson says. The SaaS option is in the works for Pivotal, with a target date of summer 2009. So without the lower TCO argument of SaaS CRM, the lure here is obviously integration with Microsoft’s most popular collaboration tools, SharePoint and Office. Can it beat Microsoft at its own integration game?

Schmidt on Salesforce Partnership

Google CEO Eric Schmidt talks about the new partnership with Salesforce.

Building New Apps on the Salesforce Platform

Learn how to build and deploy simple yet powerful applications using salesforce.com’s revolutionary platform for building, deploying, and managing on-demand applications. And no, you don’t have to be a programmer or developer to join the revolution: Watch the informative video.