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Salesforce is an organization that prioritizes innovation. It’s one of their core values and a key part of everything they do. In fact they say that “thinking differently is in our DNA.” It comes as no surprise then, that Salesforce not only uses social media for employee involvement, they built a platform to facilitate this engagement.
Salesforce created, and of course uses internally, Chatter. A platform that enables organizations to “connect every employee with files, data, and experts — anywhere, anytime.”
Chatter connects all employees in a way that enables organizations to:
Where It All Started
Why did Salesforce need to adopt a social system internally? And what were the problems they were looking to solve? I interviewed a Salesforce team manager to find out. Deanna Rigonan has worked at Salesforce for over ten years and remembers a time before they used Chatter:
- Everything was done via email
- Employees would email each other data pulled from their central database
- Content had to be downloaded, screenshot, or re-typed in an email and then would end up in the recipient’s crowded inbox
- Knowledge sharing was difficult and time consuming
As the organization grew, this communication inefficiency and redundancy couldn’t survive their innovative culture.
Now, with the development of Chatter, employees at Salesforce are able to connect instantly with “all employees” or smaller, segmented groups. This is used to virtually eliminate internal emails and increase collaboration within the company.
In addition, Salesforce uses Chatter to crowdsource information and get immediate answers to questions. For example, if a sales rep is working on a deal and needs competitive intel on another company, he or she can “broad mention” and ask the entire company if anyone has this information at the ready. Whereas before Chatter, they would have had to email around, find the most appropriate knowledge holder and then wait for an answer.
In another example, if a question is posed in a meeting and the attendees don’t have the answer, they can pose this question to the company and get the facts before the meeting closes.
Chatter also provides segmentation features that enable teams to work together more effectively. Using the same social features, team members can connect, share, query, and contribute.
Lessons for Others
Salesforce (alongside many other forward thinking organizations) is proving that social media not only enables employee involvement, it enables employees to work more effectively and efficiently. Increased collaboration and streamlined communication helps organizations scale, work effectively in teams (and virtual teams!), and enable employees to add value to all stakeholders internally and externally.
Industry: Business solutions
Name of Organization Contact: Marc Benioff, CEO
Authored by: Kristy G.
If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site, please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Program Director, Social Media for Business Performance.
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