As the cloud turns, Salesforce, Workday integrate more

Following Salesforce's lovefest with Oracle, the company is showing Workday some integration love.

Salesforce and Workday plan to integrate their product lines for joint customers in a move that's mostly notable due to Marc Benioff's recent lovefest with Oracle.

Under a technical agreement and go-to-market strategy, Salesforce and Workday will do the following:

  • Salesforce will standardize on Workday's applications.
  • Workday will standardize on Salesforce's applications and platform. 
  • Workday will integrate Salesforce with Workday's human capital management software, financials and big data analytics software. 
  • Salesforce will integrate Workday into Chatter and other applications.

Earlier:  Salesforce, Workday announce strategic product integration

For joint customers, the Workday-Salesforce tie-up probably means a lot less integration and ease of mind that data will flow freely between applications. That benefit was also touted in the Salesforce-Oracle partnership.

Workday will build connectors to Salesforce.


If you zoom out a bit customers should be relieved with all of these integration deals---assuming they actually amount to anything. The cloud is making for some strange bedfellows though. Salesforce's CEO Benioff and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison talk smack for years and then cement a bromance . Oracle and Microsoft are even partnering. The Workday-Salesforce partnership seems like more of a natural fit.

Some observations:

  • Touting the Workday-Salesforce connectors and various integration points and holding a press conference seem like overkill in some respects.
  • The Workday partnership with Salesforce may hint that Benioff's lovefest for Oracle was more about securing a good database deal for his company.
  • It's still unclear how Salesforce will be using Oracle HCM and Workday apps internally and which application will be tossed over time.
  • Salesforce is really about the revenue growth and throughput. It's safe to say Salesforce will partner with anyone if there's a customer and revenue growth benefit.
  • Partners and integrators could increasingly lose business. Let's say that all this integration actually happens and Salesforce and Workday instantly connect well. What exactly are partners and integrators going to do? The reality: Nothing in IT works out of the gate instantly. There isn't an easy button to push.

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