Salesforce.com announced on Tuesday a "virtual software bazaar" of on-demand software applications, introducing newly created HR capabilities. Delivered from Salesforce and a handful of partners via their AppExchange service, current HR functionality includes:
- Employee Services (incl. Performance Management)
- Expense Tracking
- Policy Management
Before HR vendors throw up their white flag, it should be noted that this new service is a very simplified solution offering with scaled-down functionality and an introductory level pricing model (Salesforce.com is giving some functionality away for free) and targeted primarily at SMB customers. Nonetheless, it is a great attempt to expand existing Salesforce customers while leveraging partners to attract a new client base. One of those partners, SuccessFactors, announced their service participation earlier this week (not surprising as they are mutual customers and located only a few miles away from each other), and are pricing their AppExchange Edition at $95/employee/year.
In a sidenote, this week’s feature article is eWeek discusses Salesforce.com recent challenges in uptime and performance. AppExchange and their supporting partners are dependent on Salesforce.com’s hosting infrastructure and any continuing performance degradation will have severe impacts on the AppExchange service, their partner support, and customers who are now demanding penalty-based SLAs with on-demand vendors.