After two years of going mostly virtual, Dreamforce returned in person on September 20-22. With over 150,000 attendees and 40,000 in-person delegates, the event was a huge success. It was packed with star-studded sessions, innovative product reveals, and much-needed networking opportunities.
Though Dreamforce has ended, the Formstack team feels inspired and invigorated from our time there. With speaking sessions, product demos, a breakfast truck, and a scavenger hunt, we were all over the Dreamforce campus this year.
As usual, the event was packed with key learnings and insights. If you didn’t get to attend or need a refresher on what went down, here are our five biggest takeaways from Dreamforce 2022.
1. Digital Transformation is Paramount
A common theme we noticed across speaking sessions and conversations was the importance of digital transformation. Over the last few years, we’ve witnessed a historic shift in how work gets done. Customer expectations are higher than ever, and the “traditional” ways of doing business no longer cut it. Ensuring workflows inside and outside of Salesforce are streamlined, personalized, and optimized is a top priority for businesses throughout the rest of 2022 and beyond.
However, digitization is a struggle. Earlier this year, Formstack completed a research report called The State of Digital Maturity. With the help of Mantis Research, we surveyed 2,000 U.S. knowledge workers to learn how organizations are digitizing processes, automating workflows, and improving efficiencies. Since digital maturity is more critical than ever, we wanted to see how well organizations were staying up-to-date and meeting the expectations of employees and customers.
The results were telling. We found that only 4% of the orgs we surveyed have reached the ideal of a fully automated and digitized workplace. If businesses truly want to achieve digital transformation, barriers must be overcome, including setting clear goals, gathering buy-in, and selecting the right technology.
Looking to ramp up your efforts? Take our free assessment to see where you land on the digital maturity scale.
2. It’s All About the Customer Experience
Customer experience was also top of mind this year. Customers want digital experiences that are frictionless, engaging, and personalized. However, companies can’t achieve this unless they have the right data. This was a key focus for Salesforce with the unveiling of Salesforce Genie. Powered by HyperForce, this real-time CRM platform allows businesses to create a holistic view of customers by harmonizing data received from various apps and tools. Instead of data being scattered across different systems, companies will now be able to create more unified profiles of their customers.
Using data to improve the customer experience was also a key focus for Formstack this year. During a Lunch and Learn at Bartlett Hall, our VP of Partnerships Zak Pines dived into the value of data prefill and how it can help you create workflows that keep information fresh and deliver the engaging experiences customers now expect.
Curious what data prefill with Formstack for Salesforce looks like? Check out this page to learn more.
3. Don’t Forget Your Employees
There’s no denying that the way we work has forever changed due to the pandemic. Before lockdown, many organizations were incredibly resistant to going remote. Now, remote work has become the norm. But that’s not the only way the workforce has evolved. Workers are also looking for companies that prioritize efficiency.
When organizations lack investment in digitization and automation, employees report higher levels of frustration, from worrying about making mistakes to feeling like they don’t have enough time to get their work done. They end up devoting their time to mindless, repetitive tasks instead of more strategic, fulfilling, and impactful work.
In the spirit of improving efficiency and collaboration, Slack had several innovations to share at Dreamforce. The biggest announcement was the release of Slack Canvas, a digital surface that allows teams to curate, organize, and share information. Other highlighted innovations included an enhanced version of Slack Huddles that incorporates video and screen sharing and a platform for developers that offers resources for customizing workflows.
Related: Is Customer Experience Rooted in Employee Experience?
4. Sustainability is Key
Earlier this year, Salesforce officially announced sustainability as a core company value. To further this initiative, they introduced the Net Zero Marketplace. Powered by Commerce Cloud, the marketplace connects buyers and ecopreneurs through a catalog of projects that offer carbon credits. Companies can purchase these credits to offset their carbon emissions and contribute to projects that restore the world’s natural resources.
As a company devoted to helping organizations reduce their reliance on paper, we were thrilled to hear about this. We sought to further our own sustainability initiatives this year with our Dreamforce scavenger hunt. Activities included grabbing a beverage at our breakfast truck, taking photos with Salesforce characters, answering trivia questions, and more. Each point earned went towards planting a tree for Formstack Forests, with the ultimate prize being a donation to charity. In total, we managed to exceed our participation goal and plant 7,500 trees!
5. In-Person is Still King
Virtual events are certainly here to stay, but nothing beats in-person gatherings. The main theme at Dreamforce was “Family Reunion,” and you could truly feel this on campus at various events and activities.
With more roundtables and networking opportunities available than previous years, people had the opportunity to make critical connections after over two years of staying virtual. From morning chats at the breakfast truck to the conversations we had after our speaking sessions, our team certainly enjoyed the time we were able to spend with customers, partners, and other attendees.
Until Next Time, Dreamforce
Overall, Dreamforce 2022 was a blast and we’re looking forward to all the future Dreamforces to come. Thank you to the customers, partners, and other attendees that connected with us during the event. We enjoyed our conversations with you and hope you stay in touch!
Looking to put these Dreamforce learnings into action and shake up your Salesforce workflows? Formstack is hosting several virtual events this October to help Salesforce users, sellers, and partners get the most out of Salesforce. Register now to reserve your spot.