Salesforce.com Spring 2013 Release

Written by ShamrockCRM on December 20, 2012 – 5:30 pm

Salesforce Spring 2013

Salesforce Spring 13 release is almost here.  Salesforce provided the release notes today.  There are definitely some interesting functionality in here and I will provide my overview of what I think is the most interesting.

Chatter Tasks – This is great and seems a little bit more in line with how other task management applications, such as Asana.com work with inline tasks.  This functionality will 1) Auto post your tasks related to Accounts, Contacts, Opportunities, etc directly to the Chatter feed to have a better understanding of all communication and activity related to that record and 2) Allow you to create a Task quickly and directly from a Chatter post.  Instead of filling out a complex form, type a few words and move on.  Great functionality.

Chatter Tasks Chatter Tasks Spring 2013

Other Minor Chatter Enhancements – Ability to search through Group posts, ability to make posts to Public Groups that you might not be a user of, smaller chatter messenger box when minimized.

Connect in APEX – Basic concept, but important.  Previously, if you wanted to build complex Chatter-based UIs, you really needed to implement complex HTTP calls via the Chatter REST API.  Now, Connect in APEX is providing native APEX components to build this functionality in a much simpler way.

Forecasting improvements – Now users can setup their past and future forecasts on a quarterly basis.  Forecasts can also be implemented for partner opportunities.

Salesforce for Outlook Side Panel – I really like this feature.  It is a big improvement and it seems like Salesforce is trying to catch up with some of the features of other CRM Outlook plugins.  This side panel is starting to look a lot like the Pivotal CRM plugin.  Salesforce’s version is much prettier now, though.  This side panel allows for viewing the Contacts, Accounts, Opportunities, Activities directly in Outlook.  Users can take an open or sent email and with one click, associate this email as a Task to all of these records.  Users can also search through the SFDC database for other records to associate the email to.  Salesforce calls it “viewing the Salesforce World” directly in Outlook.  One thing to remember is that this functionality is going to remove the old “Send and Add to Salesforce” buttons that you are currently used to.

Salesforce for Outlook Side Panel

Email Restriction Setting – Previously, in Sandbox orgs, you might have been affected by a ton of workflow emails / scheduled report emails and other emails to the users from your test system.  This has been very confusing, annoying, and cumbersome to deal with.  Salesforce has now provided functionality to restrict the levels to “No access” (no emails), “System email only,” and “All Email.”  This is another simple, but useful feature.

Salesforce Touch Generally Available – The Salesforce mobile HTML5-based Touch Mobile app is now available for all users.  This is a great application, but one thing to remember is that this does not provide offline access like the old mobile application provided.  This is unfortunately only available for iOS and not Android :(  All apps, standard objects, custom objects, Cases, Leads, Person Accounts, and more are all available for viewing in the mobile interface.  Remember that is is a mobile version of the full website.  It is not meant to be a full-fledged replacement.  Some functionality will not exist, e.g. Copy Billing Address to Shipping Address hyperlinks, etc.

Touch Mobile Dashboards – All dashboards are now available in the Touch Mobile app, but there are some minor limitations, such as not allowing Visualforce components, filters, source reports, etc.

Salesforce Touch Dashboards

Sunlight Search for SharePoint data in Salesforce – Salesforce provides the Pilot capability to connect to SharePoint via external objects, similar to custom objects, to expose this to users.

User record sharing – Now you can use traditional sharing components within Salesforce to share visibility of actual User records.  This could be very useful for some of the more private organizations.

Additional useful features:
-Workflow rules for Opportunity Teams
-Add single Contacts to Shared Activities
-Formula fields to access Person Account Contact fields
-Email reports related to Cases available as custom report types
-Multiple Data.com enhancements (see release notes)
-Site.com improvements – e.g. Caching for performance, enhanced Offline capabilities, CSS3 support, extended field support on forms
-Force.com enhancements – e.g. Connected Apps available for Developers, Force.com Canvas enhancements for Developer editions


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