When Chuck Robbins assumed command of the Starship Cisco (analogy to commemorate Star Trek's 50th anniversary), he promised the company would move faster under his leadership. Cisco had been rolling along at warp 6, but the digital era required it to accelerate to warp 10. Captain Robbins understood that accomplishing this meant changing the way Cisco innovates.
Toward that end, Cisco has revamped the way it handles internal innovation, and is relying more on strategic partnerships than trying to go it alone. Historically Cisco liked to do everything itself by either building or bringing inside, the latter through acquisition. Sometimes, though, relying on a partner makes more sense.
Over the past few years, Cisco has formed strategic partnerships with Apple, Ericsson, and other companies. These aren't just marketing announcements but real partnerships with meat on the bone. Cisco today announced another partnership of this ilk; this time with the CRM market leader, Salesforce.
Similar to the ones coming before it, this partnership includes joint development and marketing across a number of areas, including collaboration, Internet of Things (IoT), and contact center. Details of the integration are as follows:
The digital era is shaking up almost every industry, and businesses do need to move faster to maintain a leadership position. Cisco has been aggressive with taking partnerships to the next level. The partnership with Salesforce brings together the #1 collaboration vendor with the #1 CRM vendor, and can provide joint customers with new ways of collaborating, servicing customers, and gaining new insights through the analysis of IoT data.
Working together, as we know from watching Kirk and Spock all these years, will result in faster, better innovation than is achievable when doing it alone.