AS <3 SFDC: Why We Built AgentSync on the Salesforce Platform
February 28, 2022
It’s no secret AgentSync has a Salesforce backbone. But if you’re not familiar with the intersection of technology and insurance, you may not understand why we chose this route to build.
From a simple historical standpoint, AgentSync wasn’t developed in a vacuum. We stand on the shoulders of giants; we’re a startup in a legacy industry, one in which Salesforce has a firm foundation.
From a personal standpoint, long before I had written a line of code for AgentSync, and before I met Niji Sabharwal – who is my husband as well as my cofounder – I worked around the Salesforce environment. I’d seen Salesforce used in waste management, in nonprofit organizations recording donations, in tracking farmland use, and I realized it was a powerful platform. My various encounters meant I was well-versed in the engineering aspects of the Salesforce ecosystem.
Niji in his roles at LinkedIn and Zenefits worked with Salesforce from the operations side of the house, and knew how robust Salesforce was for data and reporting. So, from very early on, it made sense to have Salesforce be part of the tools we were building. Several factors beyond our personal experiences also made Salesforce an obvious and ideal partner.
Security and the Salesforce reputation
We built AgentSync from a security-first approach. One reason Salesforce was such a natural fit was we knew going in that our products would have to conform to Salesforce’s high expectations for security. Not only would the underlying architecture have high security standards, but our code would have to go through a thorough third-party vetting process, looking for errors or vulnerabilities, well before it ever got in front of our customers.
Additionally, we were able to use the robust role-based security framework within the Force.com platform to support our users with the secure, complex sharing models they need within the product to support a range of personas from licensing administrators to individual agents. That was attractive to us and very compatible with the goal of our product – AgentSync’s products handle a high volume of data, and protecting our users’ data is of the utmost importance.
Because Salesforce is so widely used in the insurance and financial vertical, we knew our partnership would also give us that leverage. Instead of having to go through a detailed explanation of our security standards, anyone who is familiar with Salesforce and the organization’s intense standard already knows we have passed that high bar of excellence.
Of course, for anyone looking for confirmation, we have completed our SOC 2 Type I report, but we knew from day one that we were operating within the guardrails of a highly secure infrastructure.
Flexibility, speed, and Salesforce’s infrastructure
My background with Salesforce was in designing the application to handle scale, both in terms of volume and in the complexity of workflows. From my previous experiences, I learned that flexibility is key to scaling, as the business must often change rapidly to achieve success and therefore the enterprise applications supporting the business must be able to flex.
The Force.com platform’s suite of low-code tools makes it ideal for rapid iteration for internal Salesforce teams. That is critical to supporting our customer base of insurance agencies, carriers, and MGAs/MGUs who each have their own use-cases for our products. We wanted flexibility, but we also wanted to move quickly. Building tools from scratch that would require heavy code and a lot of engineering just to reach basic functionality was not in our customers’ best interest.
Salesforce has a number of tools that make it possible to build a lot of product functionality without a single line of original code. This no-code or low-code approach makes it easy to customize our user experience, so we can give our customers something that works best for them and their specific needs without taking years to build out a single function or a single limited use.
Being able to build our product in blocks that can be changed out and rearranged from the very beginning was essential to being able to scale quickly, and meet our customers at whatever scale they are at, as well.
Connectivity and the AppExchange
Being built on the Force.com platform means we automatically take advantage of Salesforce’s strong suite of APIs, as well as being able to use standard connectors in many extract, transform, load (ETL) solutions on the market. The patterns that are critical to AgentSync’s ability to connect our products to other platforms are already built-in, even to applications that are unrelated to Salesforce.
Even easier is integration with other AppExchange applications. When an application is on the Salesforce AppExchange, we know it is going to be easy for us to integrate with because it’s speaking the same language, and we know it’s going to share the high Salesforce standards for security. That easy connectivity out of the box allows us to find partnerships that extend our product capabilities to serve our customer needs.
For instance, when a customer is looking for a background check solution, we could point to VerifiedFirst on the AppExchange and know, not only was it going to meet our customer’s needs, but it was going to meet our standards for security, and we could exchange data to provide more insights in both tools that benefit our customers.
We know we can’t solve every piece of the puzzle. There are so many needs for anyone in an insurance function, and the AppExchange allows us to go out and find ways to solve customer needs rapidly, which helps us focus on our speed, our service, and our tools.
A reliable user experience
We built AgentSync with a Salesforce backbone because the bottom line for us is a secure, customer-centric experience, and Salesforce has helped us deliver that. With their tools, our products can be highly configurable without us taking on the added expense and time of having an engineering team writing so much code. And, every time Salesforce updates its infrastructure, we – and our customers – automatically benefit.
In the insurance industry, a lot of our customers also have more bespoke processes and internal tools. By using the Salesforce-enabled low-code or no-code approach when we can, we can focus more of our engineering efforts on the carrier and agency tools that are necessarily custom.
Ultimately, we want to help our customers transform their processes to be more efficient, less time-consuming, and more people-friendly, and Salesforce allows us to deliver on that better than if we had built our code from scratch.
Regardless of what’s in your current tech stack, to see how AgentSync’s Manage product can help you achieve your own metamorphosis, check us out.