Customer relationship management solutions have become absolutely essential components of countless companies' operations. CRM is invaluable for account managers, salespeople, executives and more, providing accessible, detailed, well-organized insight into a firm's clients. And when it comes to CRM, the biggest name in the game is undoubtedly Salesforce. Thousands of businesses rely on Salesforce's cloud-based offering for their CRM needs.
To take full advantage of these tools, companies need to not only deploy Salesforce, but also effectively integrate it into their back-end infrastructure. To that end, a comprehensive, well-considered approach is key.
Easing the way
Fortunately, back-end infrastructure integration is easier with Salesforce than many other software solutions. This is thanks to the fact that Salesforce is based on a multitenant architecture. Every business using the software shares a common, centrally maintained code base. Not only does this make infrastructure integration simpler - it also adds an extra level of reliability and stability. Furthermore, this enables Salesforce customers to achieve back-end infrastructure integration faster.
The right back-end integration will support end users' needs.
That being said, it's also true that there are a number of decisions that companies must make in the context of Salesforce integration to back-end infrastructure.
Writing for Cloud Sherpas, Tanner Shamrock highlighted several of the leading options in this capacity. Among the most appealing of these is real-time data integration. With this approach, a user can perform an action and receive an immediate response. The problem, though, is that such integration efforts are more susceptible to outages and data errors.
"Batch data integration allows for effective workflow and reporting work."
This makes near-real-time integration more appealing for some firms. As Shamrock pointed out, the delays here can be as little as a few seconds, but can also be designed to take a number of minutes. It's the ideal balance in cases where instantaneous answers are not necessary but speed is still important. To achieve such an integration, you need to use an ETL tool, along with Salesforce.com's SOAP or REST APIs.
Another option is a batch data integration. Shamrock noted that these are among the most popular options, as it allows for effective workflow and reporting work that involves large amounts of information but does not need frequent updates. Batch is the simplest option, requiring users to rely almost exclusively on ETL tools for development, rather than Apex code.
Regardless of which approach to back-end integration a company chooses, it is important to recognize the important role that bandwidth and Internet connectivity will play. This is especially true for real-time integration, which can only occur with unfettered communication between the on-premise user and the cloud-based Salesforce solution.
As mentioned above, integrating Salesforce with a company's back-end infrastructure does not need to be as difficult or intimidating as you might think. But that doesn't meant the process is wholly easy or foolproof. It also doesn't resolve the question of which approach to adopt.
This makes third-party guidance invaluable. By working with an experienced industry-leader, businesses can embrace the ideal integration strategy, then execute this plan with minimal time and maximum effectiveness.