Monday, November 18, 2013

Tools You Won’t Find On The AppExchange

I love the AppExchange, but there are a few tools worth looking into that you don't find on the official marketplace for Salesforce applications.  


A patchwork approach combines features from different cloud tools.
If you haven’t heard of this one, it lets you create “If This Then That” relationships to connect your favorite cloud applications. It allows you to create a 'recipe' describing specific situations and what you would like to have happen when those situations are found. One obvious non-Salesforce recipe sends you an email when rain is in the forecast for your area. On the Salesforce side, there are a lot of publically available recipes that work with Chatter. For example, you can check the Trust Salesforce site for messages about your instance and have them sent to Chatter. There are also recipes connecting Dropbox and Evernote with Chatter.  

Browser Extensions

Check out the Chrome Extension Gallery for tools that can make any administrator’s life easier. Two nice ones from the folks at Appirio include the Utility Belt and Logins.  


Some interesting tools can be created with Heroku as well. I recently heard great things about Perm Comparator for comparing permission sets and profiles. This application was created as an open-source side project by Salesforce employee John Brock.

Basic Integrations

Keep in mind that cloud applications and services that have an API may have plug-ins or integrations with Salesforce available through their own support sites. Check out WordPress and MailChimp for examples of this or search for your own favorite Salesforce integration to see if one exists.

Explore these tools with caution, unlike the AppExchange, these do not necessarily go through the same sort of review process for performance and security. Also, with different release schedules, sometimes these tools can get out of sync with the latest Salesforce release and stop working well. Buyer beware, even when the purchase is free.

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