Another Dreamforce is done and as we rest our feet from all the walking, standing and being inspired, I wanted to share with you some of my highlights from the event this month. This was my seventh Dreamforce and never have I seen so much energy, inspiration and people all in one place. Salesforce knows how to put on a conference and demonstrated why they are still the leader in technology and innovation. This blog will cover the events, announcements and happenings as I saw them in this year’s edition of “Dreamforce 2015 Wrap-Up”. Also, don’t forget to check out all the sessions and keynote address via Salesforce’s YouTube channel.
There were many new product announcements at this years Dreamforce, but to me, the game changer was the enhancement and release of Lightning. This entirely new user interface is built on the Salesforce1 platform. The new UI which is easy to implement, promises to change the game for Salesforce. Two of the features I am really excited about is the ability to customize your dashboards via the new lightening interface. The really cool part about this functionality of Lightning is you can customize up to nine columns. According to Salesforce this was one of the top most requested customer features on IdeaExchange. In addition to the additional columns, the ability to move the opportunity board gives you a complete picture of your deals. With this view, you can drag and drop deals from stage to stage watching your pipeline change in real time. The best part about this product release was Parker Harris dressing up during the keynote (see above pic).
Salesforce designated the first day of Dreamforce (Tuesday September 15) as ‘veterans day’. There were numerous events dedicated to veterans on this day. I had the honor to present on one of the three VetForce sessions this year. We covered how veterans can use the VetForce online community portal, what enhancements have been released and how VetForce helps our ever growing number of veterans learning Salesforce. Thanks to Appirio for their valuable help in enhancing the VetForce portal. Appirio’s donation in development hours and expertise have allowed VetForce to better serve veterans online. In addition to the Dreamforce sessions, VetForce in partnership with the California Air National Guard (and with Dave Gowel’s help at RockTech) took two Chinook helicopters to Moffett Field with key officials and execs. This event was a huge success and one of our Wounded Warrior Project attendees, shared this pic with me below from the Chinook!
Later in the evening, VetForce hosted a hiring reception which brought in many veterans and recruiters to discuss Salesforce careers. It was great to see veterans interested in a career in Salesforce talk to recruiters and learn about what its like to have a career in Salesforce. Overall this event was a success with several veterans procuring an interview with potential employers. I also had the honor to work the VetForce lounge (our booth at Dreamforce) and met many great veterans who wanted to learn more about the program. One veteran told me “This is the type of program I have been looking for and thank you for spreading the word!”. In addition to veterans looking for a career in Salesforce, there were many companies and non-profits interested in learning more about VetForce. I would like to thank the many companies who have offered roles and are now looking into the VetForce program to partner with talent acquisition for our veterans. Below is a pic of VetForce’s hiring reception Tuesday evening.
Meeting Old Friends and Networking
Last but not least, Dreamforce is about networking and catching up with friends. If you have been in the Salesforce world for some time, you develop a network of friends, former co-workers and new connections that could last your entire career. This year was no different for me, I got to see several great people I worked with at Dell and are now other places and other countries. In summary, Dreamforce had everything you wanted – from new product announcements, to meetups, to an amazing gala which raised $10M dollars for children’s hospitals.
Finally, if you are a military veteran interested in learning more about VetForce or a career in Salesforce, reach out to me.
Hector Perez Jr.