Think back to Salesforce’s Dreamforce conference in San Francisco in September last year. It was a very limited attendance, on-the-ground event, a small step back to the ‘old normal’ perhaps.
The success of that gathering was in large part down to the company’s Dreampass offering and stringent health and safety protocols. As diginomica noted, 10,000 COVID tests were carried out in the 7 days prior to the conference and many, many more conducted during the course of the show itself.
With that under its belt, the firm went on to stage Dreamforce New York City in mid-December, again with the same protocols and testing mandates in place as well as the introduction of the next phase of Dreampass, although as I noted at the time:
Actually [Co-CEO Marc] Benioff referred several times to what he called Safety Cloud, but the official branding appears to remain Dreampass.
It was a name that he repeated on social media later, as did his co-CEO Bret Taylor, but on checking up I was told this was not official branding, which I thought was a shame, arguing:
PS - Safety Cloud is a good name!
Flash forward to this week and it seems that everyone’s in agreement on that as Salesforce formally announced Safety Cloud for customers in the US, Canada and Mexico, an offering that will not be confined to events, but, as per the official launch document, is intended to assist
businesses and communities better manage testing, health and entry protocols to create safer in-person experiences at events and in the workplace.
That extension into “workplaces and beyond” will come later this year. Initially this remains events focused, but with a clear direction of travel in terms of additional functionality. As co-CEO Bret Taylor puts it:
Businesses around the globe are looking for the best ways for their employees, customers and partners to get together, safely. Recognizing that testing and health status reporting is the path forward, Safety Cloud allows organizations of all types to take the complexity and concern out of gatherings and events, and bring people together again with confidence.
Ok, so that’s the pitch. What’s actually on offer?
- First up, integrations with at-home, pharmacy and on-site testing options with a number of American providers, including CVS Health, eMed, Cue Health, ixlayer, and Senneca DX. Supported testing options can be connected directly to Safety Cloud. Safety Cloud will also support SMART Health Cards and EU Digital COVID Certificates, to access clinical information, such as vaccination history or test results.
- Salesforce says that Safety Cloud will streamline COVID-19 testing and health status, with test results automatically loaded into one platform, enabling organizations better to track the availability of critical workers to ensure adequate staffing is in place.
- The sort of flexible, scalable protocols used at Dreamforce and Dreamforce NYC are also a key component, including testing and vaccine status requirements, identity and registration, and personalized communication journeys as public health guidelines change.
- Automation of workplace entry and the combining of identification and health status into a Dreampass for validated access. As a use case example, Salesforce cites an HR team wanting to get its employees and contractors back to the workplace safely can now automate entry into a building with a secure digital pass once a negative COVID-19 test result is detected.
All of this will cost $8,000 per month, per organization and you do need to be a user of Salesforce’s Sales Cloud, Service Cloud or an Industry Cloud as Safety Cloud is not available to subscribe to in isolation.
As the echoing hallways of CES and the lowered attendance at the NRF Big Show last month demonstrated, getting people back on-the-ground at real world gatherings may be top of the list of things that event management companies are keen to do, but convincing punters that it’s safe or advisable to do so is another matter entirely.
Salesforce has successfully carried out two highly-public 'proof-of-concepts' for Dreampass/Safety Cloud and commercializing this expertise and capability is an obvious move. But it’s the next step ambition here that also catches the eye with the potential to assist organizations to get back to some form of ‘old normal’ in day-to-day business, not just around their customer events.
That said, my only criticism here is, as before, around the US/Canada/Mexico centricity of this at present. There is a great need for Safety Cloud-style capabilities around the globe and I can only urge Salesforce to prioritize making this available to customers in EMEA and APAC ASAP. I’m told that the intention is to bring other regions on board later this year, although there are no further specifics or timescales on offer today.
But once more of us are able to tap into this latest cloud, this looks like another good move from a vendor that has had the proverbial ‘good war’ during the COVID crisis in terms of its response to the pandemic. If it can now extend that into the emerging Vaccine Economy, so much the better.