Salesforce.com introduced Lightning Experience, a complete user interface redesign of the company’s cloud CRM platform, to make it easier for sales professionals and developers to work with.
Following years of complaints that its Sales Cloud software has a dated user interface, Salesforce announced an overhaul of its cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) platform, aimed at modernizing the user interfaces and enabling faster enterprise app development.
Changes include a new home screen, a customizable sales dashboard, an opportunity workspace that provides an overview of work done with each client, and a My Opportunities page that lists potential deals in a sales worker’s pipeline.
The Salesforce Lightning update is an evolution of the company’s core Sales Cloud CRM offering and the Salesforce1 platform used for cloud app development. Three key areas make up Salesforce Lightning:
- Lightning Experience: The Lightning Experience brings a consumer-grade experience that is modern, efficient and intelligent to every Salesforce user on every device—desktop, tablet and mobile. Relevant information is surfaced for each screen, streamlining processes and making workflows more intuitive.
- Lightning Design System: Based on Salesforce’s new design principles (clarity, efficiency, consistency and beauty), this system translates these principles into extensible Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). The Design System is a how-to manual for Salesforce developers, enabling any developer or partner to build beautiful components that work with Salesforce on every device and operating system.
- Lightning App Builder and Lightning Components: Announced at Dreamforce 2014 and made generally available last month, Lightning App Builder is an intuitive way to build apps using a drag-and-drop visual interface of Lightning Components—reusable app building blocks that can be anything from single UI elements to robust microservices, all connected to the Salesforce1 Platform.
Salesforce also announced its Financial Services Cloud which was created with Lightning Experience. It is the company’s first industry-specific product, catering to sales teams in the financial services industry.
Lightning Experience for Sales Cloud is now available in preview and will be generally available in October. Lightning App Builder isn’t ready yet, and Salesforce will start to pilot it in October with general availability expected for early 2016.
Existing Salesforce CRM customers can choose when they move from the old to the new interface to prevent disruption to businesses reliant on Sales Cloud.