Expanded Salesforce and AWS Partnership Announced at re:Invent 2023
Salesforce and Amazon Web Services (AWS) this week announced a expansion of their long-standing global strategic partnership, a move that marks a significant evolution in cloud computing and AI-driven application development. This expansion, unveiled at AWS re:Invent 2023 in Las Vegas, focuses on deeper product integrations across data and artificial intelligence (AI), and introduces select Salesforce products to the AWS Marketplace for the first time. This development is set to streamline the processes for customers, making it easier to manage data across both platforms and integrate the latest generative AI technologies into their applications and workflows.
Reflecting on this milestone, Marc Benioff, Chair and CEO of Salesforce, stated, “Today’s announcement is an incredible milestone in the evolution of our longstanding partnership with AWS. We’re bringing together the #No. 1 AI CRM provider and the leading cloud provider to deliver a trusted, open, integrated data and AI platform, and ensure we meet massive customer demand for our products on the AWS Marketplace. With these enhancements to our partnership, we’re enabling all our customers to be more innovative, productive, and successful in this new AI era.” This comment underscores the partnership’s goal of uniting Salesforce’s CRM expertise with AWS’s robust cloud infrastructure to create new avenues for technological innovation and customer success.
Table of contents
- Key Aspects of the Expanded Partnership
Key Aspects of the Expanded Partnership
Today’s announcement is notable due to the breadth of developer and architectural enhancements.
Comprehensive Integration and Collaboration
Salesforce is expanding its use of AWS across its portfolio, adopting an AWS-native approach for its strategic Salesforce Data Cloud. AWS is increasing its use of Salesforce CRM offerings, including the adoption of Data Cloud for managing unified customer profiles. This mutual enhancement of service utilization underscores a deepening symbiotic relationship between the two tech giants, promising to bring about a new era of integrated cloud services.
Easier Access and Deployment for Customers
With Salesforce products now available on AWS Marketplace, customers can experience streamlined purchasing, deployment, and billing processes. This move is expected to accelerate the deployment of Salesforce products, benefiting thousands of joint customers.
Advancements in AI and Data Management
Salesforce will support Amazon Bedrock, a service providing access to foundation models from leading AI companies through a single API. This integration, part of Salesforce’s open-modeled ecosystem strategy, will enhance AI-driven applications and workflows within Salesforce. Additionally, the Salesforce Data Cloud will expand to support data sharing across more AWS technologies, bolstered by new centralized access controls.
Enhancing Customer Experiences
The partnership aims to enhance customer experiences through unified data management. The Salesforce Data Cloud is evolving into a comprehensive, flexible, and secure SaaS data platform. Innovations like Zero-ETL integrations will minimize the need for building ETL pipelines, allowing customers to unite their data for improved insights and application functionality.
Secure Integration of AWS Services into Salesforce
New solutions, such as the Salesforce Prompt Builder within Einstein Copilot Studio, will allow customers to create custom prompt templates using data-driven techniques. This feature will enable secure use of retrieval-augmented generation with models from leading AI companies, thereby powering generative AI experiences across the Salesforce Customer 360 platform.
Revamping Heroku for AI-First Application Development
Salesforce, in collaboration with AWS, is undertaking a significant transformation of Heroku, reimagining it as a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) layer specifically tailored for AI-first application development. This strategic shift is part of the broader Salesforce and AWS partnership, aiming to leverage the strengths of both platforms for advanced AI development.
Bob Wise, CEO of Heroku, highlights this evolution, stating, “We are integrating all the new developer tools that are coming out of the AWS world, so that developers who love using this toolset can use them to write the code, then deploy and run it in Heroku. But really easily.” This reflects a concerted effort to streamline the development process, making it more accessible and efficient for developers working with AI technologies.
Central to this redevelopment is the enhancement of Heroku’s compute capabilities. By incorporating powerful AWS infrastructure, such as Amazon EC2 instances equipped with Nvidia GPUs and AWS Trainium for machine learning training and inference, Heroku is poised to become a more robust and versatile platform for AI development. These advancements are not just about raw power; they also focus on delivering cost-effective solutions for complex, resource-intensive workloads.
This approach is particularly advantageous for developers working with foundation models, where computational demands can be significant. Wise elaborates on this aspect, noting, “Soon, we’re going to be releasing new dyno types. So accelerated dinos will run on GPU enabled host. And, with this week’s announcements, AWS has some tremendous and exciting hardware developments we will be deploying.”
Moreover, this revamped Heroku platform is expected to democratize AI application development, making it more accessible to a broader range of developers. By simplifying the integration of AWS’s cutting-edge developer tools into the Heroku environment, the platform aims to lower the barrier to entry for AI development.
This aligns with the partnership’s overarching goal of fostering a more inclusive and efficient ecosystem for AI application creation and deployment. As Wise succinctly puts it, “We believe this opens a huge opportunity for Heroku to expand dramatically.” This expansion is not just in terms of capabilities but also in reaching a wider developer community, further solidifying Heroku’s position as a leading PaaS provider in the era of AI.
The new product integrations are slated to be available in 2024.
Good For Salesforce
The expansion of the Salesforce and AWS partnership, particularly with the integration of Salesforce’s Einstein Trust Layer, reinforces Salesforce’s position as a leader in enterprise AI. The Einstein Trust Layer, serving as a Large Language Model (LLM) Gateway, provides vital features like security, prompt generation issue mitigation, and data integration capabilities. These elements are crucial in today’s digital landscape, where data privacy and ethical AI use are increasingly paramount. And adding AWS as a sales channel partner will potentially expand Salesforce’s overall customer base.