​Salesforce revamps Service Cloud with Lightning design, analytics tools

Salesforce is taking its new user interface to its Service Cloud and aims to bring analytics to customer service reps and their bosses on the fly.

Salesforce is taking its new look to its Service Cloud in a move that aims to handle an influx of customer service cases from connected devices and provide agents with well-timed useful information.

The Service Cloud overhaul is the second redesign as Salesforce aims to revamp its various clouds. Earlier this month, Salesforce said it would make its redesigned Sales Cloud with its Lightning interface available in October. The Service Cloud's new look will be generally available in February.

Salesforce has spent much of its year building technologies that will power the next-gen experience for its clouds. For instance, Salesforce has plunged into analytics with its Wave platform, pushed ahead in the Internet of things market and launched clouds for industries such as financial services.


Larry Robinson, senior vice president of Service Cloud product management, said the platform is preparing for the day where customer service reps will have to handle and route cases from everything from mobile devices to washers and dryers and cars. "It's a huge change service operations have to think about," said Robinson. The catch is that enterprises are struggling to support new customer service channels.

Service Cloud is hoping to "reinvent the agent experience" so reps can handle more work and use analytics to be smarter.

Previously: Salesforce revamps user interface with new Lightning experience and design system | Salesforce.com delivers above Q2 targets, outlook strong | Salesforce aims to embed e-commerce within Communities platform | Salesforce.com unloads new enterprise apps for Apple Watch | Salesforce delivers Salesforce1 Lightning Components - an app builder for non-coders | Salesforce launches Service for Apps, makes SOS generally available | Salesforce adds Wave apps to Analytics Cloud ecosystem

There are two key components to the Service Cloud interface. The first is the ability to be omnichannel with productivity tools and intelligent routing of cases. The second part of the Service Cloud overhaul is analytics for managers and agents. The analytics tools are designed to bring data to agents as they're working at just the right time.

What's interesting here is that Salesforce has to walk a line between bringing intelligence to the agent without overwhelming him or her. At the same time, managers will get key performance indicators at their fingertips. "We're not trying to give agents anything too complex, but provide insight. We're not expecting them to drill and explore," said Robinson.

The question about analytics and overload comes up since enterprises typically scrimp on their customer service reps. Although agents are the front end of a company they're lower paid and treated like a cost center that can be outsourced easily.

Here's a look at the key screens of the Service Cloud to highlight how Salesforce is integrating everything from its knowledge base to its SOS service to analytics in one package.

A look at the integrated analytics:


Service Cloud tools for the agents: