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January 19, 2018updated 27 Jun 2018 9:41am

Salesforce, IBM sing each other’s praises in latest AI & cloud push

Watson and Einstein are becoming firm friends in business.

By Tom Ball

Jointly acting to bolster their strategic partnership, IBM and Salesforce are leveraging each other’s capabilities to provide deeper insights and connect with customers.

IBM has named Salesforce its preferred customer engagement platform for sales and service, while Salesforce has named IBM a preferred cloud services provider.

It is planned that IBM Cloud and Watson services will be combined with Salesforce Quip and Salesforce Service Cloud Einstein.

IBM is set to build IBM Watson Quip Live Apps, bringing the Quip collaborative productivity software suite from Salesforce on board with IBM Watson. These interactive custom-built applications will be embedded directly into any Quip document to increase the effectiveness of sales teams across the lifecycle of an opportunity.

With ​Quip’s document creation and editing platform, customers are​ able to bring relevant content, for any project, into a centralized document, removing the need to toggle between multiple windows and apps to get work done.This move is intended to enhance the productivity of sales teams.

IBM Watson and Service Cloud Einstein will join forces to deliver new AI-driven recommendations for next best actions. By delivering AI-driven predictive analytics, companies will be able to create personalised, customer-triggered interactions based on the latest call or messaging chat they had, to help build stronger connections with customers.

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Ginni Rometty, chairman, president and CEO, IBM, said: “Naming IBM as a Salesforce preferred cloud services provider demonstrates the power of the IBM Cloud to help companies fundamentally change the way they do business.

“This expanded partnership builds on the combined power of Watson and Einstein to help enterprises make smarter business decisions.”

The partnership struck by IBM and Salesforce began in 2017, which has so far helped more than 4,000 joint clients leverage AI to make smarter decisions and improve customer engagement.

Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO, Salesforce, said: “The success of our customers drives everything we do at Salesforce, including our strategic partnership with IBM.

“The combination of IBM Cloud and Watson services with Salesforce Einstein and Quip will deliver even more innovation to empower companies to connect with their customers in a whole new way, leveraging the power of the cloud and AI.”

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Recent activity within the partnership involved IBM App Connect being made available via Salesforce. In addition to this, the IBM MQ messaging service for the enterprise is also going to be provided by Salesforce.

Rachael Cotton, senior manager, machine assisted service engagement, Autodesk, said: “There is a perfect marriage between Salesforce and IBM… Salesforce is where many companies like Autodesk house enormous amounts of customer data, most of which goes untapped. Combining the AI power of Watson and IBM Cloud with insights from Salesforce has helped Autodesk better understand its customers and ultimately create a transformed customer experience.”

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