Salesforce Crosses The Physical-Digital Divide With ClickSoftware Acquisition

Salesforce signed a definitive agreement to acquire Israeli field service software firm ClickSoftware for approximately $1.35 billion. The two companies already went to market as partners to provide integrated field service solutions, but ClickSoftware’s large presence in the utilities, telecom, cable, and industrial verticals will expand Salesforce’s customer base and tech assets. The more interesting story: how the acquisition helps Salesforce cross the physical/digital divide. ClickSoftware is a leader in mobile workforce management that integrates the internet of things, as with its StreetSmart (formerly Xora) solution for tracking trucking and logistics workers. And ClickSoftware has integrated AI into its field service software to swap workers in real time: If a cable technician shows up to a house and the owner isn’t home, the software reconfigures all technicians’ schedules in the region to account for geography, skill set, and more. The acquisition will enable Salesforce to help its enterprise customers achieve what Forrester calls the revenge of the atoms, overcoming the physical/digital divide and reengineering its organizations to remove internal silos.

Facebook’s Libra: We Still Don’t Know Enough

Libra has been back in the news this past week: A number of global regulators issued a joint statement, raising concerns over the privacy risks posed by Facebook’s proposed digital currency, and Facebook’s latest 10-Q filing includes a list of the risks associated with Libra, one of which is that it may never launch. While the latter point is a standard caution in SEC filings, the hill Facebook has to climb with Libra really is extraordinarily steep: The initiative has put Facebook in the cross hairs of regulators and governments as well as consumer and privacy advocates globally. Given the potentially far-reaching consequences of this project, it’s surprising how little we know about it; the available information is fragmented across many sources and documents. This in turn has led to a lot of erroneous reporting and misunderstandings. To help you separate fact from fiction, we’ve pulled together the key facts in “Q&A: The Five Most Frequently Asked Questions About Facebook And Libra.”

Cloud Increasingly Drives Tech Innovations

Our research finds that the most forward-looking enterprises and government agencies investing in innovative services are doing so most effectively by building them atop the public cloud platforms. These platforms help organizations build out minimum viable products (MVP) cost-effectively and scale iterations on-demand. Thanks also to cloud vendors’ broad global deployment options, you can place innovations in proximity to the targeted customers to give them low-latency, highly interactive experiences. Fujifilm, which we have written about as one of the many companies that faced major digital disruption, is prioritizing innovations that position itself as the disruptor and is leveraging emerging technologies in the cloud to do this. For more on this topic, please view one of this week’s Forrester webinars.