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Dreamforce 2023: Education Keynote Instant Reactions

Cloud for Good 2023 Blog - Dreamforce 2023: Education Keynote Instant Reactions

Salesforce Trailblazers the world over have converged on San Francisco to celebrate Dreamforce 2023.  Now in its 21st year, this annual event is nearly indescribable for those who’ve never attended.  Both the largest software conference in the world and the jewel in Salesforce’s crown as the #1 CRM, Dreamforce brings together the global Salesforce community for a multi-day event of learning, community building, education, philanthropy, and, not least of all, fun.

The theme of this year’s Dreamforce is all about the future of data and AI, with a special focus on how to incorporate these solutions into Salesforce CRMs with trust and effectiveness in mind.

Cloud for Good is in attendance as always, and we have three team members, all specializing in different areas of education expertise, on the ground to provide instant reactions from this year’s education keynote address.  Below are their insights on everything Dreamforce 2023 promises to offer the ecosystem and how the thousands of Salesforce clients representing higher education institutions worldwide can make the most of these new innovations.

Cloud for Good 2023 Blog - Dreamforce 2023: Education Keynote Instant Reactions Panel

What were your first impressions of the Dreamforce 2023 Education Keynote?

Ryan Blake (Sales Engineer Team Lead): My first impression was the sheer amount of excitement on display both during and directly after the keynote.  Being able to bridge together the comprehensives of Education Cloud, from full-cycle constituent management to leveraging future AI capabilities, shows that Salesforce is listening to what education clients are asking for and delivering in response.

Sarah Lamberton (Account Director): Salesforce is allowing higher education institutions to engage students and staff all along the full student lifecycle.  This flexibility of the platform lays the foundation for transformative change and a number of impactful solutions across a range of use cases at an institution.  Connecting AI + data + CRM is going to have a profound effect on the sector as a whole, and I’m so excited to dive deeper with clients to unlock even greater levels of success with Salesforce.

David Sicoli (Managing Director, Education): I am really excited to see that Salesforce has completed the full student life cycle for higher education.  You can now utilize one Salesforce instance from the time the student is a lead, to a current student, and then an alumni donor.  It’s a game-changer!  Additionally, it was very exciting to see our client Babson on stage talking about their future for Student Success and Advancement on Education Cloud!

What were your biggest takeaways from the keynote?

Blake: My biggest takeaway is that Salesforce is looking to provide full-scale solutions for higher education as a whole.  From providing self-service capabilities that go beyond academics to mentoring, and connecting students to fellow students, as well as to their advisors, it’s clear that the capabilities and potential impact of Salesforce’s new vision for the Education Cloud have only begun to be realized.

Lambertson: Salesforce is continuing to develop what’s already been released for admissions and recruiting and student success while also releasing brand-new functionality for advancement and alumni relations.  The platform is continuing to develop in a number of ways to meet the varying needs of modern-day institutions, both traditional and nontraditional.

Sicoli: Generative AI and Data Cloud are all the craze this year at Dreamforce!  Being able to connect and harmonize your data to use it for targeted communication to constituents will allow institutions to send the right messages at the right time.  This can lead to increased enrollment, persistence in graduation, and increased donations.  It will also save time for staff members servicing constituents across the different education use cases, which will result in cost savings for institutions.

How do you foresee higher education institutions utilizing the new technology revealed in the keynote?

Blake: I believe AI application is going to start at a slow, steady pace as we collectively begin to have a tighter grasp on its potential impact at an institution.  In the short term, I see the end-to-end constituent lifecycle benefitting greatly from enhanced transitions from prospect to student and then from student to alumni/donor.  The new Education Cloud, coupled with the many exciting announcements and solutions revealed at Dreamforce 2023, is going to greatly impact how data is moved around an institution seamlessly and to the mutual benefit of students, staff, and faculty.

Lambertson: I’m most excited to see how institutions leverage what’s made possible through the new vision for the Education Cloud in conjunction with additional solutions, such as Marketing Cloud and Data Cloud.  This connection of solutions creates additional capacity across interactions in Salesforce and for the institution as a whole.

Sicoli: There is now a path to a full 360-degree view of constituents with the power of the Salesforce platform.  Higher education institutions will be able to utilize their data like never before to meet their goals.

Contact Cloud for Good today to learn more about what the Dreamforce 2023 announcements will mean for the future of Salesforce.

Couldn’t make it to this year’s big event?  Recap the biggest announcements and presentations on Salesforce+.

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