Deloitte to Advise Salesforce.com Clients on Social B2B, B2C

Deloitte Digital is partnering with Salesforce.com to form a new business practice that will help clients use the Salesforce1 Community Cloud to connect with employees, customers, and other companies. As part of the partnership Deloitte will advise clients in both the private sector and government on how to create new online communities focusing on external strategic goals, with an emphasis on customer relationship management.

The partnership will draw on Deloitte Digital’s expertise in public sector, healthcare, retail, and other industries to advise clients on how to best use enterprise social media across various channels, including business-to-business, business-to-consumer, and government-to-citizen. One of the main goals is to help clients build engaging, interactive communities.

Salesforce1 Community Cloud general manager Nasi Jazayeri sated: “With over 4000 professionals globally, Deloitte Digital will provide the scale and industry depth required to support The Community Cloud and help clients build effective online communities.”

There’s an obvious need for this kind of consulting expertise, as anyone who has seen some of the lackluster enterprise social media initiatives out there can affirm. While they have all the trappings of your standard social platform, and even some nifty features for things like video calls and online tutorials, frankly you kind of get the sense that, well, no one is using them -- and that’s true for both internal and external-facing platforms.  

Part of the problem is the classic chicken-and-the-egg paradox of new social networks, namely, that if no one is using them now, then there’s no incentive for other people to join, resulting in the “ghost town” phenomenon: all the infrastructure’s there, but there are no users. Thus one of the elusive keys to success (which Deloitte will presumably help clients find, although not mentioned in the announcement) is how to prime the pump in terms of creating an active core community that gives the platform momentum by demonstrating its value to other potential users.

Some of the other main areas of interest for Deloitte clients are internal HR applications, according to Deloitte Consulting principal Marc Solow, who noted, “Our clients are seeking technologies to help provide better user experience associated with HR service delivery.”

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