Announced at last year’s OpenWorld, and previewed at last month’s Enterprise 2.0 Conference, Oracles’ Social CRM goes live today at http://sales.oracle.com. This adds another social network, although quite a unique one, to the Oracle social grid.
So, how does Social CRM compare to the Oracle social networks and what makes it so special? Let’s look at what is in the Oracle Community already. There are blogs, forums and wikis that bring together people who are interested in Oracle products and technology. They provide the communication aspect of collobaration. And, more importantly, it is collobaration around what Oracle sells.
Social CRM introduces tools to support the doing aspect of colloboration. However, it is collobaration around the products and services you sell. The heavy weight, process driven, data entry intensive tools of which we are so familiar with, and still serves a valuable purpose in the enterprise, does not cater for every aspect of how business is done. The human element in selling, in particular, is not easily modelled. Social CRM is a small step in the right direction with tools, such as Sales Prospector, to increase sales and decrease data entry.
My own involvement in Social CRM started in January of this year, looking after the Security and User Provisioning side of the platform. Of course we hadn’t even reached code chill before we started work on the next version, so we are still very busy. Watch out for more (1, 2) later in the year. For me, the most rewarding part of the work is, coincidentally, the collaboration. You see, Social CRM is made possible through Agile software development practices. It is collaborative from the inside out.