Highlights of Dreamforce 2017

Published on
January 18, 2018

Dreamforce 2017 kicked off with an opening keynote on Salesforce Einstein Analytics and how it caters to diverse enterprises like real estate, health, insurance, philanthropy, IT, and Services. It highlighted new capabilities in the product and the announcement of a revolutionary new product related to artificial intelligence (AI) coming to operational reports.

The keynote discusses how industrial revolution started with steam engine, electricity, and computing. And now we're entering another revolution with artificial intelligence. AI is augmenting knowledge and expertise by providing guidance at every stage of decision-making.

Here are the benefits of Einstein Analytics in the new age of AI:

  • You don't have to find data. Data finds you.
  • Analytics is a guidance system that will help you improve as it gets smarter.
  • It is not just about data, numbers, predictions, and scores. It's about recommendations, explanations, trust, and transparency.

The keynote highlighted these new features:

  • New Folder Management: It'll be easy to create, rename, and share folders across the entire organization.
  • Dashboard Subscription: All your key metrics come to your Inbox as emails.
  • Lightning Report Builder: Many Salesforce users found it challenging to create their reports from scratch. Now with the new drag-and-drop functionality of Lightning Report Builder, anyone can create and maintain their own reports. It is effortless and faster.
  • Smart Analytics Apps for Sales and Service: These are incorporated in Sales cloud and Service cloud.

I attended "Intelligent Experience in the Reports’" session where I learned about a new feature called Einstein Data Insights. This helps with exploring and comparing. It will automatically feature immense developments and improve data quality with a click of the button.

"Customizing and Extending Everything with Einstein Analytics Platform" discussed pre-built new features, such as ETL (extraction, transformation, and loading) and Connectors, Visual Data preparation, and App Designer.

"New Ways to Explore Your Data" shared suggestions on how to better work with data, such as:

  • Converse with your data.
  • Get answers to your queries.
  • Visualize your charts.
  • Reflect on your data journey.

Artificial intelligence is affecting our business across domains including sales, services, marketing, commerce, and application development.

Here are some of the new features you'll be hearing about:

  • Einstein Engagement Scoring: Guides the marketing team.
  • Einstein Bots: Assists service agents.
  • Einstein Forecasting: Coaches sales representatives.
  • Einstein Search Discoveries: Advises retailers.
  • Einstein Answers: Helps community members.

"New approach to Artificial Intelligence with Einstein" highlighted how Einstein approaches Salesforce metadata and uses it to identify all the appropriate information it has. It automatically identifies the relevant objects and joins them all together.

There was a chat about Einstein Discovery's significant features. It will allow business to bring back all the data, run multiple stories, pick the right insight, and roll it out to the advisors. All of this happens in Salesforce and can be done in few days or weeks.

What would a Dreamforce be without new feature announcements?

New features in Einstein Analytics:

  • Datasets: Represents what data you bring into it. This could be from Salesforce, CSV files, or Amazon Redshift.
  • Dataflow: How the dataflow will extra Salesforce data into the dataset.
  • Lenses: After extracting the dataset, you can query the data for visualizations. Behind the scenes is SAQL (Salesforce Analytics Query Language). This can be rolled up into Dashboards, which are a curated view of this data.
  • Dashboards: Provides a visual representation of analytics data using charts, tables, and metrics. This is an interactive document.
  • Apps: These contain a collection of organized dashboards, lenses, and datasets.
  • App Templates: This distributes distribution your applications to different orgs or users. It is important because traditional packaging in Salesforce is designed for the metadata. Template is an interactive piece that has some programmatic pieces in which you can use Apex or Visualforce.
  • Einstein Analytics Developer Experience (EADX): Business users who have been using APIs, Lightning components, Visualforce components, or Apex classes will find EADX fits better on Salesforce platform.

There was a discussion that compared Salesforce Security and Einstein Analytics Security. This table explains which of these manages the security.

Salesforce SecurityEinstein SecurityOrganizational-wide defaultsInheritance securityRoles and profilesRow level security with security predicatesRecord ownershipApp level securitySharing rules

"How business users can empower Mobile App with Einstein Analytics" provided an overview of Salesforce Mobile SDK 3.0. SDK is a tool that gives developers the ability to build rich mobile apps and connect to your Salesforce data from that app.

SDK 3.0 contains these new features:

  • As an open source suite for technologies, it enables rapid building of HTML5 native and hybrid mobile applications by connecting to Salesforce.
  • It comes with security and other features that were initially available on the Salesforce1 platform.
  • The mobile SDK comes with a modular architecture to offer uncluttered features and services, such as enterprise identity and security, smart store encrypted database, smart sync data synchronization, mobile services, build offline applications, and enabling deep linking.

Organizations struggle to optimize their workflow with AI because of costs involved and lack of expertise and resources. my Einstein solves this problem by helping administrators and developers build apps with AI with clicks instead of code. Its services include Einstein Prediction Builder (Pilot), Einstein Bots (Pilot), Einstein Vision, and Einstein Language.

And finally, attendees learned about Einstein Data Insights. It will automatically scan business users' data to uncover what has happened and what has changed. And it will display data insights in a way that makes it easy for any business user to understand.

Needless to say, Salesforce has a lot of exciting new features with more coming down the pike especially the significant changes of Einstein Analytics Winter '18 Release.

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