As Salesforce, The SaaS Behemoth Grows, So Does Pressure On Deals

Liz Herbert
Vice President, Principal Analyst
October 6, 2015

This is the second post in a series on strategies and tactics for negotiating your licensing agreements with software companies including SAP, Salesforce, and Workday.

Salesforce is coming off of another banner H1 and monumental customer event, Dreamforce ’15. The SaaS giant continues its meteoric rise — now into full-blown CRM, Internet of Things (IoT), and broader platform use cases. Customers remain excited and enthusiastic about Salesforce’s potential to transform their business, and they continue to adopt more and more of the Salesforce portfolio.

This continued growth has also meant a greater deal scrutiny by customers big and small. Although Salesforce famously built its business by going direct to line of business leaders — flying under the radar of corporate procurement and IT — those days are coming to an end. Salesforce’s growing deal sizes and newfound position as a mission-critical, strategic platform have caught the attention of sourcing and procurement professionals, IT leaders, CFOs, and even CEOs and Boards of Directors.

As you think about your relationship with Salesforce and prepare for negotiations, here are some tips to consider:

  1. Have a thorough understanding of your current and future Salesforce usage. This will inform an appropriate and fair deal that you won’t outgrow too quickly.
  2. Remember that deal structure and contract terms and conditions are critical. It’s not just about your price or the discounts negotiated, but also the business value your company is receiving.
  3. Be watchful for “hidden” extras such as Premier Support, storage, and sandboxes. Understand their value to you and some alternative options.
  4. Why wait ‘til renewal season to re-negotiate? If you’re purchasing new products mid-term, take that opportunity to re-negotiate your contract.
  5. Take a hard look at your implementation services needs too; this is a critical component to ensure a successful roll-out and adoption of Salesforce.

These are just some of the tactics you can employ to ensure the best deal with Salesforce for your company. Interested in more negotiation ideas and tactics related to Salesforce? Join one of our complimentary webinars on October 8th at either 10:00 PDT or 2:00pm BST — part of our software negotiation webinar series.

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