Salesforce Spring 15 Release Notes Rapid Reaction
For the first time ever I’ve consumed the entire Salesforce Release notes in HTML and have not yet even downloaded the PDF. This means I can’t even tell you how many pages the Spring 15 release notes are as I normally do, all I can say is that once again we have a release that is jam packed with features. Here are a few that I found particularly interesting. As usual, there will be follow up posts to outline specific improvements around Sales, Service, Marketing, and even one about Ideas being addressed in this release.
Subscribe to Receive Report Notifications
Users can now sign up for notifications and stay up to date on specific metrics within a report. As an example, a user can now specify rule criteria by clicking a button on a report called “Subscribe”. Once they click the button they can define things like how often to be notified (first time conditions are met or every time the conditions are met), the conditions themselves such as when an Opportunity report’s column total is less than a certain amount, the schedule and which actions to take. The actions are particularly interesting because they give the option to send a Salesforce1 Notification, Post to the Chatter Feed, Send and Email, or even execute a custom action. Once a user subscribes to a report they will then see it in a new filter on the Reports tab called Items I’m Subscribed to which makes it easier to get back to these reports and either redefine your criteria or unsubscribe.
Asset Object Enhancements
The Asset object is all grown up! Instead of leaving the Asset object for dead and not touching it ever again, Salesforce has decided that it would make it a real object. I’m particularly excited about the ability to de-couple the sharing from the Account object. This means Assets now have owners and can have their own sharing model, something I’ve been asking for with Contracts for a long time. Assets can now also have record types, field history tracking, and a tab. This will make Assets more usable in service and support contexts.
Standard Address Fields show Google Maps
Records with a standard address field will now display a Google Maps image. Note, this is a static image of the address, you’ll need to click on the image to redirect you to Google Maps in another browser window so that you can work with it to get directions. These are enabled by default so you will start to see these pop up on your Lead, Contacts, and Accounts records. You can easily turn them off by going into the new Maps and Locations settings in the setup and disabling them. This is a step in the right direction from Salesforce to provide some geolocation information directly on the platform instead of having to utilize a custom link, I imagine this is just the start of what is going to be a much more robust implementation of maps in the future.
Middle Name & Suffix Fields for Person Objects
I cannot even tell you how many times I have created custom fields for Middle Name and for Suffix. Gone are those days… For all person objects you can now enable a standard Middle Name and Suffix field via the User Interface settings so this would seem like an all or nothing setting. Some initial limitations are that the Full Name of the Contact, Lead, or Person Account will not display in all places with the Middle Name and Suffix - the places it won’t display are on Campaign Member lists and within Data.com. They also won’t be displayed in Full Names on User records. Still, this saves some time and allows for the use of a standard field(s) as opposed to always creating custom fields for this purpose and having a very odd user experience in terms of where to place the custom fields on the page layouts.
Get Faster & More Relevant Search Results
Search is my favorite mechanism for navigating any system, particularly Salesforce. I always search for what I want to get to as opposed to clicking on tabs and lists. Whenever I know exactly what I’m looking for, it’s search-first for me. Any time search functionality gets better and faster I’m happy. In Spring, data is getting indexed faster, which is pretty impressive because data already gets indexed pretty fast if you ask me. Salesforce has also changed the way that they are storing the indexed data as to make sure that fewer irrelevant search results are returned. There is some seriously geeky stuff going on behind the scenes here that we won’t get into in the blog post but just know that it’s always better to get faster and more relevant search results.
All in all, a packed release and be on the lookout for product specific release notes blog posts as well as an industry specific post in the not so distant future.