Infopedia – Microsoft Salesforce 2.0

One of the most powerful IT case studies I have read recently was the Microsoft one for their own in-house `Salesforce 2.0′ platform, what they call Infopedia.

As detailed in the full white paper on this topic of Cloud 2.0, when it is applied to the sales activities of an organization it`s called `Salesforce 2.0`.

A powerful focus area as you can imagine, and so given one of the flagship examples of how and why to do it is Microsoft`s own adoption of their own own new products, is a compelling marketing scenario for sure.

Get Sharepoint FAST!

Critically what`s really important isn`t actually specific to Sales, although they are a great example. Instead Microsoft is addressing a common issue that all users of Sharepoint have, they’ve written a recipe for a remedy out of a situation that many others will themselves be stuck in, right now.

As described in the white paper basically this situation is caused through Sharepoint being a victim of its own success. It’s been wildly popular but then also wildly used, with little regard for style or technical consistency patterns across sites, or any useful tagging within sites for simple navigation.

The end result is file chaos, and given these sites directly support the sales process, providing sales collateral like brochures to sales teams when they need them. However if it’s buried n levels deep in yet a.n.other Sharepoint site, it’s lost to the chaos.

Microsoft themselves ended up in this position and have addressed it through creating a new architecture using their recently acquired FAST Search engine.

Search is simpler because it can do a much better job of indexing content, and can process vast swathes of it, from all kinds of sources like documents, enterprise applications and even XML feeds. Users are better just submitting their content directly to Search rather than uploading and indexing documents.

Therefore I think it’s worthwhile to recognize and promote this new category of Sharepoint FAST, i.e. with FAST embedded and activated. It’s an entirely new paradigm for Sharepoint users and developers, and given the impact it offers like this very quick, very practical ROI for the sales force, it’s going to be a dynamite segment for the industry.

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