Highlights: Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020 (free PDF)

highlights:-salesforce-trailheadx-2020-(free-pdf)

Salesforce’s annual TrailheaDX developer event usually draws thousands of coders, admins, and architects to San Francisco. But this year in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, TDX (as the conference is also called) joined other major tech events, such as Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), Microsoft’s Build, HPE Discover, and SAP SAPPHIRE NOW, by going completely virtual.

The virtual conference was held on June 25 and featured a mix of live and recorded presentations, product announcements, demos, Q&A sessions, networking opportunities, and a “luminary speaker.” This free ebook download from TechRepublic shares the highlights from the conference.

In the ebook:

  • How Salesforce plans to make virtual TrailheaDX 2020 a better, more meaningful tech conference
  • Tableau’s roadmap: Deeper Salesforce integration, Einstein integration, and easier visualizations
  • Salesforce sees low-code as a key way to drive digital transformation in a new normal of remote work
  • Salesforce announces developer productivity tools built for coders working remotely
  • Salesforce adds Einstein AI to Trailhead online learning platform
  • Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020: Virtual keynote focuses on scaling and connecting from anywhere
  • Salesforce Anywhere isn’t just about collaboration, it’s about helping people work better together
  • Salesforce introduces Anywhere app and employee service solution at TrailheaDX 2020
  • And more!

Salesforce Anywhere isn’t just about collaboration, it’s about helping people work better together

salesforce-anywhere-isn’t-just-about-collaboration,-it’s-about-helping-people-work-better-together

Michael Machado, VP of product management at Salesforce talks to Bill Detwiler about Salesforce Anywhere, a new product announced at TrailheaDX 2020 designed to help companies improve workforce collaboration.

In our new work-from-anywhere world, tools to help people collaborate digitally are more important than ever before. At its all-digital TrailheaDX 2020 event, Salesforce announced a new product called Salesforce Anywhere to help companies improve collaboration within their workforce. I had a chance to talk with Michael Machado, VP of product management at Salesforce to get the details Anywhere. The following is an edited transcript of the interview.

Bill Detwiler: So let’s jump right in. What is the new Salesforce Anywhere App and how is it going to help their employees collaborate?

Michael Machado: Yeah, well, I think I like to think of Salesforce Anywhere as a whole new way to experience Salesforce and it really thinks about how to bring the power of collaboration and real time data insights into the Salesforce workflows sales service and marketers go through. So we built a one on one chat, group chat, voice, video, real time alerts, and the ability to bring all that together into your Salesforce experience so you have a seamless workflow now to never leave Salesforce when you’re trying to get your job done.

SEE: The new normal: What work will look like post-pandemic (TechRepublic Premium)

Salesforce Anywhere app, add-ons, and third-party integrations explained

Bill Detwiler: So talk about some of the components and how they fit into the Anywhere App, because there’s a lot of different parts, add-ons that are going to be available for customers who use it.

Michael Machado: Yeah. So it really starts with how do you get information out of Salesforce? So anytime changes happen in Salesforce you can subscribe to alerts now. End users have a ton of power now to talk to extreme granularity about what they want to know about from Salesforce when it happens right in time. So now you can find information out and use that to actually talk to your team, and we make the seamless transition from data insight to data collaboration. And you can embed records right into your chat very natively. You can use those to then collaborate with your team, find out why a change happened, find out how it impacts your business, and then move right into action. All of this is a seamless experience across mobile and desktop, and it really changes the way end users are experiencing Salesforce.

Credit: Salesforce

Bill Detwiler: And I know one of the things that you and I have talked about with Anywhere is the integration with video. Tell me a little bit about that.

Michael Machado: Yeah, I’m extremely excited. I came from the voice world thinking about how voice changes the way people interact with business applications, but video goes hand in hand with voice and video when it comes to collaboration. So we can easily move from a one-to-one group chat to adding more and more members to the group chat and actually bringing a swarm of sale or service reps to solve a problem. But sometimes you need to jump on a voice or video call just to kind of hash out the final details, and we make that a seamless integration with new Salesforce video that we’re launching, which brings in a partnership we’re doing with Amazon Chime so that every customer can have a native video experience right into their collaboration suite.

Bill Detwiler: And there are several partnerships like that, that are being launched or incorporated into Anywhere, right? So you’ve got a bunch of different components. You’ve got the video chat component. I know it’s not your area of expertise but there is a component partnership with Tanium aimed at IT service desks. So there’s a lot of different, I guess, parts to Anywhere. It’s one place to bring all these things together, like you said.

Michael Machado: Yeah. I mean, everyone’s going through a new normal what it means to work. There’s going to be people working from home, there’s going to be hybrid work environments where communication’s incredibly important, but the jobs you need to get done mean that data needs to be at your disposal no matter where you’re working. So Tanium brings in great ITSM use cases where you can have a view into your IT department when you are working from anywhere. But also, we understand that Salesforce video and Salesforce Anywhere brings a lot of chat and video capabilities. But we believe in partnering. So a bring your own video service. We have partnerships with Zoom, for instance, where if someone’s got a great relationship with Zoom and they want to use Zoom as a native experience in Salesforce Anywhere, you can have that integration enabled as well.

Embedded Collaboration with Comments and Chat

Image: Salesforce

Collaboration is critical as companies accelerate remote work and digital transformation plans in response to COVID-19

Bill Detwiler: Yeah. Let’s talk a little bit about that new normal. We mentioned it earlier and I think you hit the nail on the head when you said we really are in this work from anywhere kind of an environment, and I know that Anywhere is kind of part of, I guess, a trio of products that Salesforce is announcing talked about has already launched whether it’s Salesforce Care or Work.com that all fit into this new, we’re not post-pandemic yet, but the world of work that has been happening for a while but now the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated and forced companies to adjust to. Maybe talk a little bit about, from a broader context, of how Anywhere fits into Salesforce’s efforts to help companies deal with that new normal.

Michael Machado: Yeah. I think we’ve all been going through a transition over the last even few years about what a distributed workforce really looks like. How do you handle communication across geos, for instance? But what COVID-19 really did change is I went to work on a Friday expecting to show up to work on a Monday in the office at Salesforce Tower. I didn’t go to work to Salesforce tower on that Monday. So within a day we had rapid transformation and companies all over the world tried to like look at their business model and say, “How do we react to this new normal?” Collaboration now is dispersed across many applications and low hanging fruit, whatever the easiest way to communicate is, is usually what people adopt. But business process starts to break down when you have people using lots of different tools, some that are approved by IT, some that are not.

And so we wanted to really create an experience that unified the workflow so people didn’t feel like they had to adopt a new business process, but made it feel very native, very lightweight, and fast. And so as people had to adapt to this new way of working, whether you’re a sales rep and talking to your customers or a manager and trying to make sure your team is still operating efficiently and is being able to adjust, Salesforce Anywhere really gave you a tool set so that you could adapt to this new way of working. And we’ve been using it internally at Salesforce since February. So we were almost prepared for this in a way before we knew we had to be, and Salesforce Anywhere has changed the way our sales managers work, sales reps work. It’s really been great to see everyone really swarm on this product and get excited about what it means for us internally but now giving it to our customers and letting them not only get back to work but change the way they work now that they’re in this new atmosphere.

Credit: Salesforce

Salesforce wants to help people “work together better”

Bill Detwiler: And like a lot of Salesforce’s platforms, Anywhere seems to be designed to reach across all those different kinds of platforms and bring collaboration into them like Einstein did or like some of those other products, Customer 360. It really is bringing collaboration tools across the entire suite. So you’ve got things like the alert subscriptions, you’ve got records and video, which you talked about, we’ve got record history, and aggregate sort of bringing everything together. You’ve talked about you all using it internally. So how important was that? So it’s not just a separate thing, I mean, it’s going to be in Anywhere app, but it really is something you can use throughout your ecosystem.

Michael Machado: Yeah, that’s a great question. And we are at TDX, virtually at TDX. I’m at my home, but anyway.

Bill Detwiler: We’re all virtually at TDX year.

Michael Machado: Which is the best community. It’s got such an amazing diverse group of professionals in the developer landscape of Salesforce’s ecosystem, the admin ecosystem, who really love to take all of our technology and show us how they want to use it. And so what we’ve actually done is we’re thinking about, how can we transform the sales, the service, the marketer’s user experience of Salesforce? But we understand that this is a platform company and our developers and our admins are really what extend our capabilities. So everything we’re doing we’re looking at from a platform landscape. We’re thinking about ways that we can take some of our chat capabilities and let people extend that into their own custom applications. But really interesting technology around presence, for instance. Understanding how your team is working, where they are in Salesforce is incredibly powerful but it’s also incredibly hard to build.

And so building some of this technology for not only collaboration but also understanding and being able to work together better is incredibly powerful for our user experience but it’s also incredibly powerful to give that to our developers. Presence is something that I get pretty passionate about because it wasn’t that long ago that you kind of peek over your neighbor’s shoulder at your desk and look at what they were working on and they’d have a question for you and you can kind of have that intimate collaboration without really feeling like you had to jump on a call or share your screen. That’s what presence really brings and I think you’ll see some amazing demos that we’re going to be showing at the keynote where you get to actually see two people working together, chatting, following each other, understanding why people are making changes without really having to change anything about what they’re doing because of the power of presence, chat, collaborative features, all integrated into one workflow.

http://www.techrepublic.com/

Developer Essentials Newsletter

From the hottest programming languages to the jobs with the highest salaries, get the developer news and tips you need to know.
Weekly



Sign up today

More TrailheaDX 2020 interviews and developer resources

Salesforce sees low-code as a key way to drive digital transformation in a new normal of remote work

salesforce-sees-low-code-as-a-key-way-to-drive-digital-transformation-in-a-new-normal-of-remote-work

Ryan Ellis, SVP of Product Management for Platform at Salesforce, talks to Bill Detwiler about how the company is helping its customers accelerate their digital transformation efforts using a low-code philosophy.

For years, companies have been talking about digital transformation, but in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies, government agencies, and organizations are accelerating their digital transformation efforts. In the run up to the Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020 virtual developer event, I had a chance to talk with Ryan Ellis, SVP of Product Management for Platform at Salesforce, about how the company is helping its customers accelerate their digital transformation efforts using a low-code philosophy. The following is an edited transcript of the interview. You can also listen to the interview on TechRepublic’s Dynamic Developer podcast.

Bill Detwiler: So let’s start with this acceleration of these digital transformation plans that companies have been talking about, how has Salesforce been working with its customers to make sure that they can adapt quickly to this new environment that we all find ourselves in?

Ryan Ellis: Yeah. Bill, we’ve been speaking with our customers for years about digital transformation, lots of companies have been seeing how the world around them is evolving and changing, and they’ve been trying to prepare themselves and get ready for those changes. Sometimes that’s been because of a change in technology, sometimes it’s been a change in their industry, and what they had been previously thinking about for maybe spending a couple of years and maybe a lot of different engineers developers working on that to create this transformation that they were looking for, now with this pandemic, with COVID-19, they’ve basically had to change those plans and really accelerate and now do this essentially as an imperative for their very existence at times.

One of the things that we’ve been seeing is that during that time, people have really pivoted to start to embrace low-code even more than they had before. Certainly it was a popular movement that was gaining ground, but during this time, people don’t have time to spend years with developers building hard-coded experiences. They need to be able to act fast. They need to be able to use people who have sort of non-traditional development skills, who can conceive of an application or a process that they’re trying to roll out and be able to build those things quickly using low code.

Low-code can enable rapid application development

Bill Detwiler: You hit on something there that I think is really important, which is the limited resources, the time constraints that a lot of IT departments, a lot of organizations are facing right now. Talk a little bit about how low code helps with that and how building on maybe the Salesforce platforms helps companies do that.

Ryan Ellis: Yeah, absolutely. Salesforce, and low code in general, this really enables people who are not professional coders to be able to create applications. The way that they do that is that these tools basically are more like drag and drop. So imagine that you had a process that you wanted to lay out, suppose, for example, that maybe it was like our customer Academy Bank. Academy bank is a community bank, and when the government passed the CARES Act, they suddenly found themselves in a position to be able to potentially help hundreds of thousands of different small businesses around the world. But they were doing this through receiving tons of loan applications for PPP. This was a huge influx into them and they needed to quickly pivot overnight. In five hours in one weekend, one of their, IT people basically used Salesforce to create a process to capture those loan applications and to be able to then provide visibility for the organization overall, what’s going on with those loans, and ultimately get the money in the hands of small businesses more rapidly.

Credit: Salesforce

This was something that they had been previously really struggling with. They were just basically capturing files that people sent in as PDFs, they were put into different folders that would represent the statuses of those loans and move them from folder to folder as they were changing them. As you can imagine, that’s a pretty error prone process, a pretty manual one, and really didn’t give them visibility into what was going on overall. And so with Salesforce using low code, they were able to transform that process and make a huge difference for small businesses on their region.

Bill Detwiler: Expand on the current situation that we’re in, or given the current situation that we’re in, where a lot of people are working from home now. We have a very spread out, a very distributed workforce, and there are differing opinions about how many people will come back into the office versus how many people will continue to work from home. In a world like that, when you have teams spread out all around the world and that have to collaborate, how does sort of low code help improve, I guess, that collaboration or help make that collaboration easier? Software developers, maybe even more than any other business unit that I know of, tend to be spread out. You have developers that work across the country, around the world, different language barriers, different times zones, and so they’re accustomed to dealing with that. But there are a lot of, I think, business units that maybe aren’t. Or even if software developers are used to doing that, now they’re dealing with everyone else on every other team is now distributed from product managers, to project managers, to line of business owners and users. How does low code fit into that new normal when many more people are just working physically apart?

Ryan Ellis: Well, in many ways, low code development is not actually that different from professional development. It’s just faster and more accessible to a broader cross section of people. And so in many ways, like that type of professional development, people can collaborate, they can collaborate through the software itself. As an example, we have a tool called the Lightning App Builder, which allows you to basically drag and drop and create what a screen should look like, where all of the various components should be laid out across that screen. And using capabilities like dynamic forms and dynamic actions, which are capabilities we’ve rolled out in the last couple of months, you are able to actually tailor that experience so that, for example, maybe one type of role within your company should see one of those components at a particular time and maybe another role it’s not really relevant to them whatsoever. Maybe when you’re on your mobile device, you want to see some of these components or fewer of these components because you have much less real estate on the device. And so these capabilities allow people to rapidly iterate and see what they want to evolve that experience to be.

One of the great things about the low-code world and people working remotely from one another is that you could make those changes, and then I could just refresh my browser over here and see them, and I could verify them with you, we could be chatting about that experience and quickly, in real time, iterating on what we want it to actually be [in deck].

SEE: Hiring Kit: Python developer (TechRepublic Premium)

Tipping point: COVID-19 has increased awareness of low-code’s benefits

Bill Detwiler: Another thing that you touched on is this ability to lower the barrier to entry to making these changes, to doing this development work, and I think that’s also something. We were talking about in the context of allowing companies to iterate more quickly because you don’t have to have a large background in say, languages to know how to make some of these changes or to develop on the platform. How does the low-code movement fit into making development in general, or whatever we want to call it, more accessible? I guess, to people from a wider array of skills and backgrounds, as we look to sort of improve inclusiveness, to help to sort of fight against some of the social inequities that exist as we look to bring more people into the software development community, how does low code play into doing that?

Ryan Ellis: One of the great things that we’ve done here at Salesforce is we’ve created this entire platform and community called Trailhead. You’ve probably spoken with some of my colleagues about Trailhead before, and we really believe that it’s been an amazing uplifter of people all over in terms of helping them to learn new skills, to build new careers and really transform their lives. That’s no different with low code. We have a ton of great content related to low code on Trailhead, and we have amazing stories of people who have completely transformed their careers by learning about how to use these low code tools in a fun and sort of innovative way through Trailhead.

The great thing is that because these tools are very accessible, it doesn’t take a huge leap to get going with it. You can just take a sort of simple trail, walk through something for maybe 20 minutes, a half an hour and feel like you’ve accomplished something, you’ve learned something. And actually oftentimes bring that back to the office and enable it right then and there, and make change for your company, for your customers right there in that moment.

Honestly, that’s an addictive process. You go there and you see how rapidly you’re able to make change. People go back and they learn the next chapter, they learn more about what they can enable, come back and do it again and again. It becomes really iterative.

There’s also an exciting community around it, where people are sort of urging each other on celebrating each other’s victories. That’s something we didn’t necessarily always see in the world of professional developers where sometimes that was a little bit more of an insular sport, if you will.

SEE: 10 ways to prevent developer burnout (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Bill Detwiler: How do you see, or what do you see, I guess, as the future for low code, whether it’s within sort of the bigger picture of software development, or whether it’s within more of the admin space, or what do you see is the roadmap over the next, say one to two years for low code and then maybe even beyond at a more long term view after that?

Ryan Ellis: I think one of the big things that this pandemic has done is it’s really opened people’s eyes to low-code built awareness in really dramatic ways. I think that because of that, we’re going to see a tipping point in terms of that awareness, that people are going to adopt low code for more and more of their use cases going forward and understand that it also gives them a huge deal of flexibility and agility to change as the environment, as their business, as needs change.

A big thing that we’ve seen for a long time with low code is that people found that it was a way for them to sort of rapidly get a leg up. And they were doing that sometimes for maybe a very internal facing type of experience. Maybe it was changing a process and how their business operates, and certainly people will do that and do that and more and more, but now we’ve also seen people doing it in large ways for their customers, as well.

Credit: Salesfroce

As an example, we saw a huge uplift in the usage of bots during this whole pandemic. People of course, have questions and they want answers about whether or not services are available and how they can get them in these changing times, and people turned to bots. Again, another low code. AG, great tool to help enable those questions to be answered in rapid scale. And this is a way that they’re recorded going direct to consumers with low code or with communities. Another great example is that the UC Berkeley genomics lab, they do amazing work on CRISPR and all sorts of incredibly important work, but they decided during the pandemic that they had to shift gears entirely and become, essentially, a COVID-19 testing lab. They did this overnight, they did it on a weekend where they brought in a Salesforce and its low code capabilities, and they created a community and they use low code tools to do that. And with that community, people are able to go in and be able to fill in questionnaires and get information about COVID and about testing. Actually at this point, they’re now able to process a thousand COVID-19 tests a day, oftentimes for first responders or underserved communities like the homeless. It’s just been really, really an amazing experience to see how these low-code tools are being able to make a difference in the world, not just for businesses and how they operate, but for broader constituents as well.

http://www.techrepublic.com/

Developer Essentials Newsletter

From the hottest programming languages to the jobs with the highest salaries, get the developer news and tips you need to know.
Weekly



Sign up today

More TrailheaDX 2020 interviews and developer resources

Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020: Virtual keynote focuses on scaling and connecting from anywhere

salesforce-trailheadx-2020:-virtual-keynote-focuses-on-scaling-and-connecting-from-anywhere

Salesforce executives discussed some of the latest company developments, including the Anywhere app, Code Builder, Einstein recommendations, and more.

Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020 kicked off on Thursday with an opening keynote from Sarah Franklin, executive vice president of developer relations and general manager of Trailhead at Salesforce. This fifth year of TrailheaDX looked much different than those of the past, with Franklin video conferencing from her living room rather than speaking live onstage in San Francisco.  

SEE: Hiring Kit: Application engineer (TechRepublic Premium)

The virtual version of the conference adds to the list of major tech events forced online due to the coronavirus pandemic. Franklin noted, however, that just because the conference isn’t in  person, that does not mean we are disconnected.

“I’m supposed to be with you in Moscone, taking over San Francisco together in a huge keynote room with thousands of you, but we’re not doing that right now. [We’ve] taken this two day experience and condensed it down to a six-hour timeframe together,” Franklin said. 

“We’ve completely reimagined this experience for you today…here in a virtual experience,” Franklin said. “Even though we’re not physically together, nothing is going to keep us apart.” 

However, the glitchy video feed made staying together a little difficult. After a couple page refreshes, the video would come unfrozen, but the experience was definitely a little more disruptive than seeing a presentation in person. 

Salesforce didn’t fail to keep viewers entertained though, featuring singer Jennifer Hudson as an opening act and CBS’s own Trevor Noah as a guest speaker. 

Franklin touched on the various issues happening around the world, even hosting a moment of silence for reflection. 

“Let’s be real for a moment,” Franklin said. “There is a lot of pain in our community right now, we’re in the middle of four crises: A health crisis, an economic crisis, a social crisis, and a leadership crisis.”

She noted how meaningful conversations and innovations are critical during this difficult time, and she introduced various Salesforce executives to demo some of their latest products, along with client examples, to emphasize the need for scalability and connectivity in the enterprise. 

Here were some of the announcements made during the Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020 virtual keynote: 

In a digital world, Franklin said it is critical that employees are able to work from anywhere, which is the inspiration behind the Salesforce Anywhere app. 

“Salesforce Anywhere empowers everyone to sell, service, and market from anywhere. And today, with Service Cloud Voice, telephony built right in, and Einstein Call Coaching, it’s never been easier to do that,” Franklin said. “And with Vlocity joining the Salesforce family apps for every industry from anywhere: Healthcare, financial services, retail–from anywhere.” 

Through the app, on desktop or smartphone, users can easily communicate, collaborate, share data, and work together from all across the world. 

Partnering with Tanium, Salesforce announced its employee service solution that helps alleviate the pressure IT teams are under to deliver service to a fully remote team.

Wade Wegner, senior vice president of product management, presented a demo during the keynote that used an IT problem with an employee, Monica, as an example.  

“Let’s say Monica has a connection issue. In real time, just like she would text a friend, she can chat with an IT chat bot on her phone. This is an intelligent bot powered by Einstein and Flow that can help troubleshoot most common cases,” Wegner said.

“Through Tanium, the agent can see all of the hardware and software assets associated with Monica and can see that her computer is running an older version of the VPN client. The agent is able to securely push the update to Monica’s laptop, but wait, there’s a notification indicating that others are also impacted by this issue,” Wegner continued.

“An IT agent can securely push the update to all of these users at scale. Boom. Not only have we been able to solve Monica’s connectivity issue, but we just proactively solved it for a lot of other people,” Wegner said. 

Trailhead, Salesforce’s online learning platform, will feature personalized Einstein recommendations to help employees pick the right skills for them, said Chris Duarte vice president of Trailhead content at Salesforce, during the keynote. 

Using employee Emily as an example, Duarte said “These are AI powered recommendations for Emily, based on her role as a developer. And the cool thing is, the more Emily uses Trailhead, the smarter and more tailored these recommendations become.”

Code Builder allows developers to build right in their browser, said Claire Bianchi, director of product management in developer tooling at Salesforce, during the keynote. 

“It can often feel daunting setting up your environment, especially if you just need to write a quick Apex class,” Bianchi said. “With Code Builder, a workspace is created in moments with everything you need.” 

“First, we have a custom landing page with links to Trailhead, developer documentation, and even Salesforce samples on GitHub. Because you logged in with your Salesforce org, Code Builder is smart enough to have all of your orgs preauthorized; no need to manually sign-in, simply select which org you want to work against and go,” Bianchi said.

“We set up your workspace with everything you need for Salesforce development, including the Salesforce CLI, the Apex debuggers, custom LWC [Lightning Web Components] and Aura tooling, and more,” Bianchi added.

 

For more, check out Salesforce launches Salesforce Anywhere, app that embeds collaboration, data across platforms on ZDNet.

http://www.techrepublic.com/

Executive Briefing Newsletter

Discover the secrets to IT leadership success with these tips on project management, budgets, and dealing with day-to-day challenges.
Delivered Tuesdays and Thursdays



Sign up today

Also see

Sarah Franklin speaking at the Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020 virtual keynote.

Image: Screenshot

Salesforce introduces Anywhere app and employee service solution at TrailheaDX 2020

salesforce-introduces-anywhere-app-and-employee-service-solution-at-trailheadx-2020

The products aim to boost collaboration and communication among the newly adapted remote workforce.

During the virtual version of Salesforce TrailheaDX 2020, executives announced the Salesforce Anywhere app and a new employee service solution. Both products aim to help improve collaboration within workforces as they adapt to the new normal of remote work, the company said. 

SEE: Network security policy (TechRepublic Premium)

“We we all know, in early 2020, this year, the COVID-19 virus began to sweep across the world, forcing billions of people to shelter in place and businesses to rapidly pivot into a new way of engaging with their customers and Salesforce,” said Sarah Franklin, EVP and GM of platform, trailhead, and developers at Salesforce, during a press briefing on Wednesday. 

Franklin referenced two Salesforce initiatives that resulted from the coronavirus pandemic. The first was the execution of Salesforce Care, a free rapid response solution for organizations that had to shift remote. The second introduced Work.com, which provides a set of solutions to help business and communities reopen safely. 

On Monday, Salesforce introduced a partnership with Siemens. The collaboration combined Salesforce’s Work.com, powered by Customer 360, and Siemens’ Smart Infrastructure solutions, including Comfy and Enlighted, to deliver an ecosystem that forges safe, connected workspaces, it said. 

“Today, we’re here to talk about entering phase three: Growth,” Franklin said in the briefing. 

“The pandemic has made organizations aware that if they don’t have a digital presence, they’re not going to survive,” Franklin noted. “It’s very clear that digital is an imperative and working digitally from anywhere is critical for business continuity. Companies are adapting to new work cultures with higher percentages of remote workers and virtual meetings events. We’re emerging from those being secondary options to being the main way that people work.”

The two new solutions announced on Wednesday contribute to this next phase, helping to make remote collaboration easy, Franklin said. 

Salesforce Anywhere app and employee service solution 

Salesforce Anywhere “is a set of solutions for helping companies move to this all digital, work-from-anywhere world,” Franklin said. The employee service solution is integrated within the platform to allow users to work from any location seamlessly.

  • Market from anywhere

The app, powered by Salesforce Customer 360, allows users to sell, service, and market from anywhere in the world. Utilizing cloud, social, mobile, and artificial intelligence (AI) to build intelligent, personalized experiences for any industry. 

By utilizing apps like Service Cloud Voice and Einstein Call Coaching, organizations can deliver customer success from anywhere, according to Franklin. Additionally, Salesforce partnered with Vlocity earlier this year, which means data models, APIs, and workflows will be even more industry-specific in the app. 

“Centralized call centers can now be geographically distributed teams of agents operating out of their homes. Marketing investments, major trade shows, and physical events can now become targeted, online campaigns,” Franklin said. “Commerce can shift from brick and mortar to digital storefronts medical care from doctor’s offices to telehealth. We see this happening in every industry.” 

  • Collaborate from anywhere

The Salesforce Anywhere app, which can be used via phone or desktop, allows for real-time team chat, notification alerts, comments, and video conferencing, right into the Salesforce platform and within the organization’s regular CRM workflow, Franklin said.

“This is important because it enables people to collaborate from anywhere right within Salesforce in the context of the customer,” Franklin added.

Users will be able to see which teammates are working on the same Salesforce page and easily view all record history within the platform. 

  • Work from anywhere

“The growing workforce being remote puts a huge strain on IT help desks, because they need to support their employees and they can’t do that in person anymore,” Franklin said. “To manage this at scale and with security in mind, we want to help employees work from anywhere. So we’re announcing a new employee service solution, in partnership with Tanium, that will give it teams complete control of all the employee devices and services on their network.”

Tanium is a leader in endpoint management solution and security, allowing for protected visibility within the Salesforce solution. 

“It’ll include a help desk for employees to submit tickets, a dashboard for IT managers to view all their assets and incidents in one location,” said Wade Wegner, senior vice president of product management, during the press briefing. 

“[The service] will provide AI-powered recommendations to prioritize incidents for IT managers as well as capabilities for monitoring devices and pushing out updates,” Wegner said. 

This solution will help IT teams in a couple of ways, Wegner noted. 

“First, it’s going to help employees access consistent support across every device and channel, including AI-powered bots and mobile self-service sites,” Wegner said. “Next, it’s going to make IT able to maximize productivity with an integrated help desk, asset management, and workflows to automate and to securely resolve incidents fast.”

“And, finally, it will accelerate incident resolution by giving it a complete view of every employee along with AI-powered productivities,” Wegner added.

  • Data from anywhere 

The “data from anywhere” component combines the powers of MuleSoft and Tableau to help companies access, process, and gain insights on their data, no matter where that data is, Franklin said. 

Users can leverage MuleSoft to unlock and integrate data into an application network using API-led connectivity, widening the data available for review. Organizations can then use Tableau to identify insights from up-to-date data, resulting in fast and reliable business decisions, according to a press release. 

  • Skills from anywhere

Users will be able to gain skills remotely by utilizing the new Einstein recommendations within Trailhead, Salesforce’s free online learning platform.

“[On Tuesday], we announced new Einstein recommendations for Trailhead, and with Einstein recommendations, our powerful AI serves up new learning content—or what we call trails and, and badges—based on learners’ past behaviors and activities of people similar to them,” Franklin said.

“Like, if I’m a developer in mobile, it’ll show me what other people that do mobile dev have learned as well. And because it’s AI, the recommendations improve over time,” Franklin said. “These algorithms get smarter, making learning more personalized and intelligent than ever before. Think of this as a Netflix of learning, where it has everything that you want right in front of you.” 

“And Trailhead is also delivering a ton of new resources to address these changing business environments on many topics that companies and individuals need to navigate this new normal, making it easier to skill up from anywhere and meet the business demands that you need to focus on growth,” Franklin added. 

The Salesforce Anywhere App will be available in beta in July, with the product expected to be generally available in Q4 of 2020. The employee service solution will be available in beta in November 2020. 

For more, check out How Salesforce plans to make virtual TrailheaDX 2020 a better, more meaningful tech conference on TechRepublic. 

http://www.techrepublic.com/

Tech News You Can Use Newsletter

We deliver the top business tech news stories about the companies, the people, and the products revolutionizing the planet.
Delivered Daily



Sign up today

Also see

Embedded Collaboration with Comments and Chat

Image: Salesforce

Salesforce announces developer productivity tools built for coders working remotely

salesforce-announces-developer-productivity-tools-built-for-coders-working-remotely

A new set of developer productivity tools from Salesforce is designed to help coders working remotely build applications more quickly and at scale.

On Tuesday, June 23, Salesforce announced a new suite of developer productivity tools designed particularly for coders who are working remotely — Code Builder, Salesforce Functions and DevOps Center. In the run up to the company’s TrailheaDX 2020 virtual event, I had a chance to speak with Ryan Schellack, Product Marketing Manager at Salesforce, about the new tools, how they can help developers streamline the app building process and when they will be available. The following is an edited transcript of the interview. You can listed to the interview on TechRepublic’s Dynamic Developer podcast.

Bill Detwiler: Ryan, thanks for joining us.

Ryan Schellack: Hey, Bill, thanks for joining. Thank you.

Bill Detwiler: All right. Thanks. Let’s start with the rundown of what the new tools are.

Ryan Schellack: Yeah, absolutely. So, Bill, we’ve obviously been working, just as everyone else has been, in a very interesting, fast-changing landscape. And something that we’ve been focused on actually for a while now, pre-pandemic and certainly now with this changing focus and scenario, is how to make people who build on the Salesforce platform more productive, more effective than ever before. And something that we want to think about is people are distributed now. I’m talking to you not from the floor of TrailheaDX in person, usually we’d be talking in San Francisco right about now, but instead we’re communicating over Zoom. That’s the standard for everyone.

So we’re introducing new developer productivity tools that are more relevant than ever for people that are needing to build and collaborate from anywhere. We’ve got three capabilities that we’re talking about now. The first is Code Builder. This is a brand new, web-based development environment that is optimized for Salesforce and actually powered by a partner. It’s powered by Microsoft’s Visual Studio Codespaces tool. We’ve worked with Microsoft to reimagine developer tooling for Salesforce, where we’ve been investing for years now on the desktop, now for the web. So people can build in their browser, which empowers them to build from anywhere, and to do so in a more collaborative fashion.

Salesforce Code Builder: Workspace Manager

Credit: Salesforce

Something like 80% of Salesforce developers prefer to, or must due to IT regulations of their company, build with web tools. And so rather than build something bespoke, we’ve listened to our community. They love building on VS Code, which is Microsoft’s open source code of the dirt. They love the extensions we’ve built there, they’ve just expressed the desire to be able to use it from their browser. So Code Builder is designed to do that on top of Microsoft’s Visual Studio Codespaces.

So what we’re doing here is we’re providing people the ability to deploy a full-featured, fully-configured IDE right from their Salesforce at work. It runs in a cloud-hosted environment, you can access it from any browser, and that means that you can access anything that we’ve built over the past few years at Salesforce in terms of developer tooling, the CLI, those extensions I mentioned for VS Code, anything really we’ve innovated on right from your browser. It’s going to dramatically lower the barrier to entry for people that are developing on the platform because they don’t have to download software, install anything, configure it. They basically push a button and get a fully-feature development environment.

That also means that some of our low-code developers or people that are more declarative in terms of how they build, they’ll now have access to modern tooling right from their browser. They don’t need to worry about the scaries involved in configuring a typical desktop environment. That means everybody’s going to have access to more modern tooling, they’re going to be able to access it from wherever they go, and that’s going to make them more productive.

So that’s the first big thing that we’re announcing here. The other one is Salesforce Functions. This is a new way to build apps on Salesforce in a serverless, scalable way. We know that a lot of our developers have expressed a desire to tap into some of the benefits of Functions as a service. They’ve seen some of the vendors in public cloud do this, they’ve wanted to do it. And what we’re trying to provide here is more than just another serverless product, we’re delivering serverless agility with the Salesforce context. And so what that means is that you’re going to be able as a developer to write code, write some custom business logic, using languages that you might already be familiar with such as Apex, if you built on Salesforce, but also other languages such as Node.js and Java, and all of the open source libraries associated with them and build for Salesforce.

So you’re going to be able to write that code, and that code will deploy in response to events and data from Salesforce. You, as a developer, manage nothing else except your code. You don’t need to provision any infrastructure. You don’t need to manage any additional technology or overhead. You just write code, you give it to Salesforce, and Salesforce will run that code elastically on demand. That’s great because especially today, we’re in a very unpredictable circumstance, apps can be very dynamic, and capacity planning is another requirement that slows you down as a developer or a team from releasing new products and services.

Salesforce Functions

Credit: Salesforce

So with Functions, you just focus as a developer on custom code, and your peers in the business, the business users, declared developers, admins, they can even invoke those functions via low-code tools that everybody knows and loves like Lightning Flow. They just go through a flow, they capture that function, they invoke whatever custom logic is in that function.

As a developer, I write the function for everyone. It can be reused, it can be used in multiple contexts. As a business user, I don’t need to care too much about the underlying custom code, I just benefit from that elastic scalability and that on-demand business logic to do something interesting, like create maybe a new PDF out of thin air. I don’t need to have someone build that PDF generation logic in Salesforce from scratch, if you will, I might have just one of my developers pull an open source library that someone else already built. And that means we can deliver a new service for our customers or employees even faster.

And speaking of delivering things faster, this third thing that we’re really excited about is DevOps Center. And so, DevOps, that’s been something that has been critical to our community for a while now. We’ve introduced a lot of capabilities over the past few years through what we call Salesforce DX, programmatic platform development tools for developers, but we know that a lot of admins, a lot of people who identify as Salesforce product managers, maybe they work in a Salesforce Center of Excellence at a company. They want to be involved in the release management cycle as well, and they want to use modern DevOps tools.

DevOps Center lowers the barrier to entry for them. Kind of like Code Builder, it’s making it easier for people that don’t necessarily identify as programmatic developers to leverage modern technology and capabilities to release and govern apps in a better way. So this means that you’ll be able to track changes across your orgs in a streamlined UI. You’ll have a new work object that you can use to kind of pin your changes against and collaborate with your team, so that you’re releasing your changes in a way that takes in user input, takes in feedback. And you’re going to be able to build more effectively than ever against source control.

Salesforce DevOps Center

Credit: Salesforce

So that’s like code and metadata in a repo like GitHub. Historically, you’ve kind of had to be a developer to take advantage of those really amazing technologies for collaboration and versioning. Now, it’s really easy. This DevOps Center provides that necessary abstraction layer, so now everybody can benefit from CI/CD modern automation practices that you see in DevOps, but without necessarily having to become a programmatic developer or be too familiar with those. So for developers, admins, everyone involved, this’ll mean faster releases and releases of higher quality.

Those are the three things that we’re delivering here that we think are going to be really impactful for developers, especially today in the current situation that we’re all working in.

Bill Detwiler: A lot of changes, updates were made to Lightning last year. I remember that was one of the things that we were talking about at TrailheaDX last year, and at Dreamforce. How do the new tools fit within the larger Lightning platform?

Ryan Schellack: Yeah, so these are all very much seamless with Lightning platform, and seamless with the changes that we’ve made over the past couple of years. I think last year when we talked, we were talking about open sourcing the Lightning Web Components’ programming model. Since then, we’ve done more open sourcing around our base components. Things like functions, for example, can be called, they can be invoked, not only from those declarative tools I mentioned like Flow, but from your Lightning Web Components.

So we keep thinking, how do we create more extensibility and a more seamless interaction of components across our entire set of developer capabilities? And so, that’s one example where you see that. Another example is that in terms of developing things like Lightning Web Components and developing for Lightening in general, in the past, the developer tools that we’ve had out of the box, for example, the Developer Console, which many developers know in Salesforce, they actually haven’t been equipped to build Lightning Web Components. You’ve had to use desktop tooling.

Code Builder allows you to use a web-based tool, but build modern Salesforce technologies like your Lightning Web Components or your Salesforce functions. So unifying the tool kit that you had for building on Salesforce and putting in the browser, that’s another part where you see the pieces of Lightning platform coming together. And then DevOps Center, of course, that’s an experience that you have within Lightning, so it’s using the Lightning user interface as a means to centralize artifact tracking and tracking of changes. For not just one org, but multiple orgs, so that everybody can have an eye on new feature requests, changes, whether they be for something that’s going to face a customer, such as a new community that you’re going to build with Lightning Community Builder, or it could be for something that’s an internal change, a new employee experience application.

All of these capabilities enrich the Lightening experience. They enrich the output that someone who builds on Lightning can deliver, but without them necessarily having to adopt a new way of building. We’re not making people go to another platform and then integrate in. All of these tools are natively integrated with Salesforce and with Lightning, and that means that you’ll be able to deploy them and adopt them much faster.

Bill Detwiler: In general, there’s always a tug between low code, no code, and building sophisticated tools that maybe developers need to write complex code when they need to do that. How does Salesforce balance that when looking at the new tools that it’s going to release? What’s your thinking about that in general going forward? What should we look for?

Ryan Schellack: Yeah, I think what you’ll start to see, Bill, is greater extensibility of low code to professional developer capabilities. In the past, this is a bit of a difference from how a lot of platforms, including Salesforce, have built in the past, which is they’ve tried to define these fine boxes, these clear boxes around where you as a developer can have access to tooling, et cetera. We think that our developer base is inclusive of low-code builders. We don’t think that they must have their own sort of boxed-in tooling. Instead, we think that low-code developers will see the capabilities that we’re building and immediately recognize value, and then be able to grasp that value.

For example, through these flows that you can now construct, which can develop or incorporate screens, which have Lightning Web Components fundamentally underpinning them, they can now reach out and through events, invoke functions. And as a low-code developer or a low-code builder, again, they don’t necessarily need to learn how to write a node function for any particular business reason, but they can better communicate to one of their peers who is a professional developer what they need and how the two of them can collaborate, and that collaboration process is much more seamless with more reusability.

And then especially for things like DevOps, DevOps is something where a lot of low-code users have communicated with us, “Let us in, we need to be involved in this. We know Salesforce, we know the org, but maybe we don’t know Travis or Jenkins or other CI/CD technology,” or they don’t really know GitHub that well. This makes it easier for them to participate, be a voice, be heard, and influence that release management process in a more impactful way. Not a way that works around the technology, but meets everyone where they are and helps connect them, so that no one as a professional developer is having to learn too much low code. If you’re low code, you don’t need to learn too much development capabilities.

Salesforce Code Builder: SOQL Query Builder

Credit: Salesforce

In fact, with Code Builder, we’re going to introduce a SOQL Query Builder. All low-code builders need to build SOQL queries players at some point or another. We’ll let them do it from a modern user interface, but without having to really write any code. They’ll just use their clicks to actually build a full SOQL query, run it, test it, and then move it into their production org.

Release date and availability: Salesforce Code Builder, Salesforce Functions and DevOps Center

Bill Detwiler: Well, Ryan, it sounds really interesting. When do these official tools drop? When will they be available?

Ryan Schellack: Yeah, so I’ll go in order of the three of them. Code Builder is going to be announced at TDX in pilot, so we’re announcing it tomorrow I should say, on the 23rd. At TDX, we’ll be basically introducing it to the world in pilot. It will be a small, closed pilot. You can expect it to be an open beta later this fall, probably around Dreamforce time, and then early next year, it should be GA.

Salesforce Functions similarly is moving into a restricted pilot. Later this year around Dreamforce, same deal, we want it to be in a larger, more inclusive beta. And then early next year as well, that’ll be GA.

DevOps Center is on a slightly different release timeline. It’s another really interesting off-core innovation, so it’s something that we’re using a lot of new technologies to build, which means that probably late this summer, people will be able to get their hands on it in a developer preview instance. And then probably early next year, they’ll have a chance to get involved in a beta, and then shortly after that, it will be GA.

So a lot of these great things we’re announcing, developers will be able to get their hands on them very soon. We’ll have live demos for all of them at TDX, so definitely people should tune in. That’s our big developer gathering point of the year. And I think people will be really happy to see we’re not just talking about these things, but we’re showing them, and people can start to think about how they could use and benefit from them.

http://www.techrepublic.com/

Developer Essentials Newsletter

From the hottest programming languages to the jobs with the highest salaries, get the developer news and tips you need to know.
Weekly



Sign up today

More TrailheaDX 2020 interviews and developer resources

Salesforce adds Einstein AI to Trailhead online learning platform

salesforce-adds-einstein-ai-to-trailhead-online-learning-platform

Einstein Recommendations for Trailhead will bring Salesforce’s AI software to the company’s online learning platform.

Ahead of its virtual
TrailheaDX 2020

developer event, Salesforce announced that they will be embedding the company’s Einstein AI software into Trailhead, its online learning platform. Einstein Recommendations for Trailhead will provide “tailored recommendations” to help learners pick the right skills to complete and badges to earn. I spoke with Sandeep Bhanot, SVP of Trailhead Product at Salesforce, about how the system will work, what it means for Trailhead and how AI will shape the future of online learning. The following is an edited transcript of our conversation.

Bill Detwiler: So let’s start with Trailhead and what it means to integrate Einstein into the platform. What can trail users expect?

Sandeep Bhanot, SVP of Trailhead Product at Salesforce

Credit: Salesforce

Sandeep Bhanot: So we’re really excited, Bill, that now learners in Trailhead can see the full power of our industry leading AI technology, Einstein. And so what that specifically means is when learners now log into Trailhead, whether through the desktop or amazing Trailhead Go mobile app, they will see extremely personalized and intelligent recommendations for them, for the skills and the badges to complete based on their activity, their role, their career aspirations, and their specific needs to skill up. These would be extremely customized and personalized recommendations powered by Einstein.

Bill Detwiler: And will this change over time as people earn certifications, earn badges? As they change the ranking within Trailhead, how will Einstein adapt to that and change its recommendations?

Sandeep Bhanot: Yeah, that’s a great question. And in fact, that’s the real beauty and power of AI driven technology like Einstein, is our recommendations are absolutely based on the learner’s prior activity on the platform. So the AI algorithm and the engine learns what types of badges and skills that our learner is interested in acquiring. And just like wine, it gets better with age. The more data that the Einstein and AI algorithm gets about a learner, the more personalized these recommendations become because we really get to know the specific details of that learner’s career choices, their role, what kind of badges they like, whether it’s beginner type of badges or advanced or intermediate, et cetera. So all that activity about a learner goes into making these recommendations that are much more personalized over time.

Bill Detwiler: And what about a new user? So if you don’t have a lot of data on me … So I’ll give you a really good example. I registered for Trailhead today, created my own account so that I could-

Sandeep Bhanot: Congratulations.

Bill Detwiler: … attend TDX. When I’ve gone in the past, when it’s a live event, Salesforce has been able to handle that for me, but because it’s a virtual event, I had to do that. So I created actually a Trailhead account because that’s what we use to register for the event. And you don’t have a lot of data on me as a new user. How is Einstein reacting to that, to new people that come in to Trailhead?

Sandeep Bhanot: That’s a great question. In fact, onboarding new users, such as yourself, Bill, is actually one of the most important use cases for us, for Einstein recommendations. And you’re right, when a new user signs up to the platform, we don’t know much about you, but we do know something. When you sign up for Trailhead, for example, you get to select your role, whether you’re a developer or an admin or a business user or a sales rep, service agent, et cetera. So that is a one important signal for Einstein and our AI algorithm to know what type of skills and badges you might be interested in. Right?

And so based on your geography and based on the role you’ve selected, we make some initial recommendations. And of course, with AI and Einstein, we compare that with other people in similar roles, what kind of badges do they typically tend to get started with? And those are the badges that would be initially recommended. But as you start engaging more with Trailhead and you start to earn more badges, those recommendations, as I said before, will get more and more personalized and get better over time because we’ll get to know your preferences and your learning habits and your career aspirations that much more better.

Salesforce Einstein Recommendations for Trailhead

Credit: Salesforce

Bill Detwiler: So it’s not just about what I’m doing, but it’s also what the Salesforce community as a whole is doing. And are there mechanisms in place to help me be, I guess, as successful or the most successful that I can be in terms of which badges I go for first? Saying, for example, like, well, 1,000 people who came in, who did this certification, did this badge, took this lesson, they tended to progress more quickly. They tended to gain more badges more quickly, or for whatever reason they had a better outcome. Is that something that Einstein will be able to do within Trailhead?

Sandeep Bhanot: Yes, absolutely. So as I said, any learner is kind of matched to the appropriate cohort if you will, of other learners such as themselves, but based on role or beginner, intermediate, advanced learning requirements, et cetera. And the learning activity of that larger cohort does drive the recommendations that get surfaced to the learner. So absolutely, that goes into what makes for these personalized recommendations for a learner.

Bill Detwiler: Now, Trailhead was started to teach people about Salesforce, but Salesforce has also been expanding the platform to allow third parties to use it, maybe to build their customized training programs for what they want to train their staff for. Is Einstein just for the Trailhead platform that Salesforce is using? Are there plans maybe to expand that if this goes well? What’s your thinking there?

Sandeep Bhanot: Yeah. It’s a big question and you’re absolutely right. The vision for Trailhead, while initially it started with Salesforce and letting anybody in the world be able to learn the skills for their tomorrow, our vision is absolutely to be able to expand it beyond just the Salesforce ecosystem. And so we’re really excited to partner with strategic partners like AWS and Apple and Google and many others, to be able to bring in their content and their learning onto Trailhead. And we announced exciting new partnership with AWS at Dreamforce last year, as an example. And we’re really excited about that partnership and we continue to invest in partner with AWS on adding their learning to Trailhead.

And the Einstein recommendations absolutely apply to those … Any badge available on public Trailhead, including AWS and our strategic partner badges, those are absolutely included in the AI and Einstein recommendations that a learner sees. Again, depending on the learner’s interests and their career aspirations and their re-skilling and up-skilling requirements, if a strategic partner skill or a badge is relevant to them, that will absolutely be recommended to them.

SEE: 
How Salesforce plans to make virtual TrailheaDX 2020 a better, more meaningful tech conference

Online learning is critical for the new “all digital, work-from-anywhere world”

Bill Detwiler: You know, when we were talking about how important it is to help people with that re-skilling, with the up-skilling. And we were talking a little bit before the show about that, especially now in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, in the wake of so many people being furloughed, being laid off, looking to change careers, talk a little bit about Salesforce’s thinking about Trailhead and how features like this will help that population of people who are kind of looking to make a career change? Whether they’re developers, admins, in IT now or not.

Credit: Salesforce

Sandeep Bhanot: Absolutely. I think that’s a great question and you’re absolutely right. COVID-19 has fundamentally changed our entire world and economy. And, if you think about it, for our customers, for many of them digital transformation initiatives, the timelines for them have gone from years to matter of months, sometimes even weeks just based on the sudden and incredible impact of COVID. And on top of that, we have obviously an incredible economic crisis and a huge workforce displacement, as you mentioned, with millions of people unemployed in the US and worldwide.

And so in this environment, we believe that the ability for anyone to be able to learn the skills, the new skills, that are needed for this new, all digital, work-from-anywhere world that we’re all living in, that ability is extremely important, more relevant than ever. And that has always been the mission of Trailhead. Our mission has always been to democratize education and allow anyone in the world to be able to learn these skills, these new skills, for the new normal. And so we’re also really excited to see that our … If you look at the data and the traffic on Trailhead since about March, when the COVID impact truly started to hit us, the numbers back up that assertion.

We’ve seen 37% increase in our signups since March. We’ve seen four times the traffic on our amazing Trailhead Live platform, which is the live streaming and on-demand video platform that we launched last year. We’ve seen over 50% increase in overall engagement on the platform, meaning how many badges a given learner completes. So across the board, we have seen amazing interest in Trailhead, and it’s all driven, as you said, in the post-COVID world, the ability to learn these new skills for the new normal are more important, relevant than ever. And so we’re very proud and happy that Trailhead can play an important part in that with our mission.

Bill Detwiler:  Thinking more broadly too, how do you believe artificial intelligence and machine learning will affect online education over the next, say five or 10 years? Especially, as you put it and as we’ve talked a lot about on TechRepublic, we are in this new normal, this area of remote work, of telecommuting, of work not having to be connected to a geographic location and how that’s probably going to continue during our timeframe. Talk a little bit about that.

Sandeep Bhanot: Yeah, absolutely. Number one, I think you’re a hundred percent right. This new world is an all-digital, work-from-anywhere world that we live in. And I think maybe initially, maybe some of us might’ve thought, “Oh, it’s a temporary … We’ll get over COVID and we’ll get back to normal.” The reality is this is the new normal. Once you get used to ordering groceries online and getting it delivered to your home, you’re probably not going back to the old world. So I think it’s safe to say we truly are living in the new normal, and it’s not going back. There is no going back to the old normal, if you will.

And so, as I said before, being able to be skilled and up-skill and learn the new skills that are needed … For example, you might need to learn how to build an Einstein bot, to be able to service your customers better. You may need to learn how to automate manual business processes if you’re a company being forced to live in this new normal. The ability to learn all these new skills is absolutely critical, and you can do that on Trailhead. In terms of my view of the longer term learning market, I really believe that across all learning platforms, we will all have to sort of force ourselves to think about what are the new skills that learners need to be able to succeed in this new normal?

Some of them might be the same skills as before, but there are many new skills that I think people will need to acquire. As one small example, like contact tracing. If you think about that, while that discipline has existed for many, many years before, but the need for that talent right now, for manual contact tracers to be able to allow our economy and offices to reopen safely, that is a whole new level of jobs that are needed, and talent that is needed around contact tracing. So that’s a new skill that people have to learn up and skill up for.

And so on Trailhead as an example, we’ve added a contact tracing career path page, so people can understand what a contract tracer does, how to skill up the content from sources like the CDC. So that’s just one example of this new normal does need new skills, and I think that’s going to be a huge driver for the industry going forward.

http://www.techrepublic.com/

Developer Essentials Newsletter

From the hottest programming languages to the jobs with the highest salaries, get the developer news and tips you need to know.
Weekly



Sign up today

Also see