Innovation in the tech industry can oftentimes resemble a game of “tag.” You’re always trying to catch up to what’s in front of you — and when it takes a turn, you better be ready. Propel, a solution that helps companies create, commercialize and correct products, purposefully built their product to withstand the twists, turns, and growing pains that many companies wait to address until it’s too late.
By building Propel on the Salesforce Platform, Kishore Subramanian, VP of Engineering at Propel, rests assured knowing that his company was built to innovate and grow at the speed at which the industry is headed. We spoke with Kishore to learn more about Propel’s platform story and the no-code tools that have helped take his product further.
What benefits do you see from building on the Salesforce Platform?
Kishore Subramanian: Overall, we’re able to focus on the PLM (product lifecycle management) and QMS (quality management system) domains that we specialize in and don’t have to worry about our solution’s core infrastructure. As a startup selling to small businesses, Fortune 500 companies, and everything in between, you can have a product that’s purpose-built for exactly what’s needed. As you grow and sell to larger enterprise customers, the need for extensibility and flexibility becomes more apparent. Even as we grow our customer base, we’re able to do it with a smaller team. We’re fewer than 70 employees today. If we built our infrastructure from scratch, we would need several more engineers than we have today.
Watch Kishore Subramanian discuss why Propel was built on the Platform in this YouTube episode of How I Built It >>
What kind of extensibility does the Salesforce Platform provide?
Kishore: We leverage no-code tools like Salesforce Flows, Process Builder, and Workflow Rules that allow our customers to tailor Propel to their needs. For example, a company that wants to increase sales and engineering responsiveness to their customers can set up real-time data flows from Sales Cloud to Propel with just a few clicks, ensuring both teams always have access to the latest customer data. You don’t need to rely on a developer to do it anymore.
What no-code tools are you most excited about?
Kishore: Salesforce’s Lightning App Builder and Web Components, which allow extensibility at the UI level. I often compare these tools to Lego blocks. Legos wouldn’t be as interesting if the only thing you could build was one type of model. The reason it’s worked so successfully is because I can mix and match from multiple sets and create something unique based on my own creativity.
They are so useful because we cannot predict every single requirement that our customers might have — those requirements are constantly changing. So instead of them having to work with what we provide out of the box, we enable them to tailor our UI to their needs — and to continuously change as needed.
How does Propel keep up with product upgrades?
Kishore: Typically, if you use code vs the Salesforce tools we leverage, you are version-locked and stuck in a corner. So as Salesforce moves along to the next release version, we can do so safely simply by the click of a button, providing the latest features to our customers instantly.
How has Salesforce helped support Propel along your innovation journey?
Kishore: We have received great support from Salesforce. My ISV technical contact periodically shares new Salesforce technologies that we may want to consider. He actually introduced us to the LWC engineering team and helped us understand the technology, connected us to the right people involved, and answered our questions. We now have the majority of our engineering team implementing Lightning Web Components into Propel, which will eventually help our solution be even more extensible for all customers.
In what ways does Propel extend the Salesforce Customer 360?
Kishore: When a consumer provides feedback or a complaint through Service Cloud, it automatically turns into a complaint inside Propel. Quality teams can immediately begin investigation and remediation, while simultaneously working with product teams to address the issue in future versions. Unlike a heavyweight integration where data lives between systems, then has to be replicated and moved, all of it resides in the same platform. This helps our customers improve responsiveness in a way that no other solution can match.
Bring the extensibility of the Salesforce Platform to your app. Become a Salesforce partner today and see how it can take you five steps ahead of where you want to be on your journey to innovation.
This article originally appeared on AppExchange and the Salesforce Ecosystem.
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