Collaborative tool Quip furthers Salesforce integration

Pinterest used Quip to enhance collaboration between different departments in order to create new video advertising for its popular social media application.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Pinterest had a collaboration problem. It needed multiple departments to work together to come up with an innovative way to introduce video advertisements to its app.

Tim Kendall, president at San Francisco-based Pinterest, turned to the Salesforce collaborative tool Quip. Using its living document and mobile-first platform to fuel collaboration on the go, Kendall was able to have his business, engineering and design departments work closely together to create flowing video advertisements that weren't too pervasive for the user.

Kendall stressed the usefulness that a collaborative tool like Quip can have on companies that are working on dynamic projects across departments.

"When multiple departments collaborate together, we can create new things," Kendall told an audience at Dreamforce 2016. "Quip allows for that cross-disciplinary collaboration."

Since purchasing Quip in August, Salesforce has begun integrating the collaborative tool into its platforms, starting with its CRM system.

"With Quip being deeply integrated with the Lightning model, you can pull Salesforce fields directly into Quip docs and spreadsheets," said Bret Taylor, founder and CEO at Quip. "When information is updated in Salesforce, it's updated in the Quip document, too."

Taylor said he expects more integration with Salesforce in the future.

We are so addicted to email that we didn't have the courage to imagine something new.
Bret Taylorfounder and CEO, Quip

"We want to do better integration with Chatter and Marketing Cloud and their other products," he said, adding that it will be left up to customers to decide which collaborative tools work best for them in the Salesforce ecosystem. "We're not going to be too opinionated on whether you want to broadcast something on Chatter or write a Quip document. We're focused on being integrated and letting our customers tell us what interface they like.

Before adopting Quip as a collaborative tool, Kendall said Pinterest relied on Google Docs when working on collaboration projects. Some drawbacks came with Google Docs, Kendall said, primarily the difficulty working on documents on smartphones.

Quip and other collaborative tools, such as Slack, HipChat, Microsoft SharePoint and Office Suite, aren't just for projects where departments are spread out across offices or countries. The benefits of using living documents like Quip with co-workers just a seat or two away also exists, according to Kendall.

"A lot of product development is local, but even then, collaborative tools are still important," Kendall said. "You still want to understand the context and how you got to a decision."

Employee collaboration typically takes place in meetings or long email threads, something that Taylor said was a foundational piece when creating Quip.

"We have a super computer in our pocket and all we do is send or read more email," Taylor said. "We are so addicted to email that we didn't have the courage to imagine something new."

With a mobile-first approach, Quip users receive push notifications when updates are made to their documents or if they are tagged by a colleague. Documents can embed spreadsheets, charts, tables and checklists, allowing employees to gain a full perspective on the project at hand.

"The nature of Quip allows people to drive toward clarity much faster [than email]," Kendall said. "They can ask each other questions quickly, you can embed whiteboard screenshots. It's a way to share visuals in the context of a discussion."

Salesforce purchased Quip for $750 million in cash and stock.

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