Salesforce's new channel chief is working closely with his predecessor as the cloud computing giant looks to scale its business by further aligning partners and industries.
J.C. Collins, who previously oversaw the CRM leader's development of partner strategy, was promoted at the start of February to senior vice president and COO of industries, innovation and partners—a position in which he will be responsible for running Salesforce's channel programs.
Collins took over those duties from Neeracha Taychakhoonavudh, who shifted to the new position of senior vice president for industries, where she leads go-to-market efforts organized around seven core verticals.
Both Collins and Taychakhoonavudh report to Tyler Prince, executive vice president of industries, innovation and partners, and fill key roles in implementing a strategy that Salesforce believes will double its revenue within a couple years.
There's a lot of overlap in all their jobs, as reflected by their recently adopted titles, Prince told CRN.
"It's important to have partners baked into our industry strategy," Prince said.
Prince, who came to Salesforce five years ago from PWC, where he led the global consultancy's Oracle practice, has been structuring Salesforce leadership around the three strategic pillars of industries, innovation and partners.
Salesforce President and COO Keith Block defined those pillars as a framework for realizing the ambitious target that CEO Marc Benioff has set of growing the company to $20 billion in revenue faster than any that has come before it.
"We put this together because of the synergies across all of those pillars," Prince told CRN. "Our focus on industry is better when we're aligned with partners."
Big systems integrators are almost all organized around industries, Prince noted. Many ISVs also sell solutions on the Salesforce AppExchange geared to specific verticals.
Taychakhoonavudh has been at Salesforce for ten years, the last four managing partner programs that support the company's massive and diverse ecosystem.
The time she spent working closely with Salesforce partners imparted a wealth of industry experience that she has rolled into the new mission of crafting industry strategy, sales approach and solutions.
Collins will continue running partner strategy while also taking charge of the programs, operations and enablement component of the Salesforce channel.
Before coming to Salesforce in 2013, Collins helped emerging technology companies establish sales and channel strategies as an associate partner at Monitor, a consulting firm later acquired by Deloitte.
As to the innovation pillar, Salesforce is focusing on Ignite, a program that helps partners and customers re-imagine how they engage with their customers. Ignite is comprised of a team that includes strategy consultants, design thinkers, and even anthropologists, Prince said.
Having consulting partners, ISVs and resellers in emerging markets all working in concert will help Salesforce effectively scale in the coming year toward Benioff's $20 billion goal, he told CRN.