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Integrating Salesforce for Outlook

In the connected world of business, companies often need to integrate Salesforce for Outlook to allow these systems to send information back and forth. Businesses are more connected, data-driven, and digital than ever before, making a connection between email and CRM systems has become a standard SaaS integration. 

Salesforce for Outlook both store critical customer data, much of that data being identical or correlated. Without integrating them, employees must work in both applications simultaneously and transfer or refer to the information in both. Creating bidirectional communication between these systems enables employee productivity and business efficiency. 


Why integrate Salesforce for Outlook

A Salesforce for Outlook integration creates the least amount of barriers between customer-facing employees and the data they need to be successful in their roles. 

Here are a few benefits that come with integrating Salesforce for Outlook: 

  • Automatically sync contacts, events, and tasks between Salesforce and Outlook. 
  • Keep customer records up-to-date in near real-time.
  • Allow visibility into Salesforce customer data within the Outlook application.
  • Save employee's time and drive business efficiency. 

Let’s apply these benefits to a common use case: the sales team. Sales representatives use Outlook to communicate and book meetings with existing or potential customers, meaning any new information or contacts need to be manually added to Salesforce from Outlook. With a Salesforce for Outlook integration, all Outlook data is auto-synced to the associated contact in Salesforce. From the Outlook application, they also have visibility into Salesforce records associated with an email contact without going into Salesforce to find it. 

How to connect Salesforce and Outlook

Before blindly integrating, decide which data you want to sync between these systems. Do you want all data points? Only contacts? Exclude calendar events? The answers to these questions will likely come from the LOB end user or decision maker asking for the integration. 

Next, pick a method of integration. Because Salesforce and Outlook are common applications that need to be connected, there are lots of options for integrating them, with varying difficulty based on business needs. 

At MuleSoft we believe that API-led connectivity is the best possible way to integrate all of your systems, applications, devices, and all of their data. By building an application network, businesses can easily connect all of these with APIs, which can be reused across the organization to create a fully connected enterprise. 

If your Salesforce for Outlook API is one of the first integrations in your network, we already have our Microsoft Office 365 connector you can use. This pre-built connector makes it easy to build API-led connectivity between your Microsoft Office systems and any other system you may need to connect to it.

Perhaps you’re a LOB employee and your IT team has already set up an application network with connections to other Microsoft Office systems; you can reuse the connections already in place to connect Salesforce and Outlook. 

With an application network, it is also possible to group APIs together to build out process APIs and connect Salesforce and Outlook to other systems. A few examples could be a customer request for service or a request to book an appointment or meeting. 

It’s possible that you just need this as a single integration, in which case it may be best to integrate using the Salesforce for Outlook Installer. 

For a full list of MuleSoft’s pre-built connectors, visit Anypoint Exchange and see how a network of connected applications and systems can impact your IT teams.