Winter ’13 Features – Part I

By August 27, 2012Latest News recently leaked the release notes for Winter ‘13, their upcoming addition to the SFDC platform. Winter ‘13 has loads of sweet features, sure to be hyped up at Dreamforce happening next month.

Here are the EC staff’s picks:

Salesforce Communities

The rumored result of Salesforce’s acquisition of Buddy Media, Communities will use social networking site features to better unite users with their customers and partners. This feature will be highly customizable, allowing users to create multiple communities within their own organization, and even incorporating company branding to make the Community feel like a true extension of the organization. The best features of popular social media sites will be integrated into Communities, including trending topics, user profiles, and influence measurement à la Klout.

Chatter Polls

By popular demand, Chatter in Winter 13 will feature a polling application, allowing users to poll their colleagues. Although it will be great for polling potential meeting times or client ideas, we predict it will be even more useful when determining what beverages to have at the company holiday party.

Chatter Preview Links

Tired of having to click on every link posted in your Chatter feed? Click no more! The new preview feature will allow users to view videos, links, and more directly in Chatter. Supported sites include the likes of YouTube, SoundCloud, Vimeo, Mashable, and more.

Viewing Your Salesforce World in Microsoft Outlook

SFDC Winter ‘13 users will be able to view contact and lead details directly from their Outlook in the new “Salesforce Side Panel.” The Side Panel will display up to four past activities and opportunities related to contacts mentioned in the To, CC, BCC, or From fields, as well as allowing the user some flexibility to search for additional contacts, leads, accounts, and opportunities.

Chatter Answers in Customer and Partner Portals

Like it’s predecessors from Yahoo and Google, Chatter Answers allows users to crowd-source for information within Salesforce. By integrating reputation-building features, Winter ‘13 hopes to lighten the load of organizations’ customer support departments. The update also allows admins create a Visualforce page within a Customer or Partner Portal, encouraging open communication and trust between customers and organization users.