Salesforce has given us another tiny peak into its upcoming Communities release, this time announcing a product called Company Communities, customizable intranets that are mobile ready and can integrate with other apps.

Real time Access to People, Answers

What good is a company portal or intranet if it doesn't provide real workflow simplicity? Too often, internal company tools like intranets become siloed wastelands of disuse, and Salesforce obviously thinks it has a plan to solve this. By making the intranet a central place for workers to find what they need when they need it, it could be a boon to knowledge workers in any field.

Company Communities, then, is meant to be just that kind of environment. Workers can log in to a customized workspace where they can publish, update and review content, and then divvy up workloads based on roles and profiles of colleagues.

Additionally, if expertise is needed in a particular area, Salesforce hopes Company Communities will make that person easier to find. Social profiles will be able to be searched, and collaboration can happen right in the feed with Chatter, the Salesforce activity stream.

Apps + Collaboration

It wouldn't be a Salesforce release without pointing out how integrated this product is, and yes, all the apps a worker might need to do their job are purportedly going to be available in Company Communities. That could help create a more seamless workflow making processes flow a bit smoother. That would be particularly helpful when it comes to mobile, where processing power and upload/download speeds already come into play.

Learning Opportunities


Private, customized, collaborative workspace in Salesforce Company Community.

The key will be how easily it will be to share files, a centerpiece of enterprise collaboration. If Salesforce gets this right, it could go a long way in helping justify its high price tag. Virgin America is one of the product release partners for Salesforce Company Communities, and its People and InFlight Services team has been using the product almost exclusively on mobile devices.

"More than 90% of our team never sit at a desk or PC," Frances Fiorillo, SVP of people and inflight services at Virgin said in a statement. That means they rely on collaborating within Company Communities in a busy, constantly changing industry.

Communities is said to be going live in the second half of 2013, and there are sure to be more snippets previewed before then. Until then, tell us in the comments if your intranet/portal/activity stream is super useful or if you a still all about the emails.