When it comes to hiring a salesforce partner to help make your project a reality, there are two acronyms that you need to know— Salesforce PDO and SI.
Product Development Organizations (PDO) and Systems Integrators (SI) are two types of Salesforce consultants; both are specialists within the Salesforce ecosystem helping you develop products or deliver projects. Understanding the difference between the two and the kinds of problems they solve or services they provide can help you take the essential first steps to extract the most value from the Salesforce ecosystem.
Difference Between a PDO and an SI
The most significant difference between these two Salesforce partners is that Salesforce PDOs have expertise in building commercial apps, while SIs specialize as service experts that implement and configure Salesforce Products and Apps to best meet your organization’s needs.
That’s the long and short of it, but we can get more nuanced than that when discussing the two. So first, let’s look at the differences between the PDO and SI within the Salesforce ecosystem, design considerations, and technical focus.
What is a PDO?
The Salesforce platform is highly customizable, and PDOs create apps to add functionality to their client’s organizations. The best and worst thing about Salesforce is that you can do just about anything with it. With a platform that offers that much flexibility, it’s critical to identify a partner who can best guide you in your decisions on creating and developing applications in the most efficient way to drive revenue.
Only Salesforce PDOs offer familiarity with the packaging, approval process, and security review for ISV apps that Salesforce requires before listing your app on the AppExchange. Not all PDOs are created equal. In the Salesforce ecosystem, 7 PDO specializations align with Salesforce Product Lifecycle phases:
- Ideation/Business Model/Value Prop
- Architecture & UX Design
- Development/QA/Release Management/Security Review
- AppExchange Listing/Trails and Demo
- Product Support
- Packaging Review & Optimization
- Marketing Support
Identifying what services your business needs are critical variables to help determine which PDO is the best fit for you.
What is a SI?
System Integrators (SI), often referred to as Consulting Partners, specialize in implementing, configuring, and customizing Salesforce products and apps. They provide their clients with the services to build, optimize, integrate, and configure your Salesforce environment.
Typical SI projects can consist of
- Data migration
- Custom development
- 3rd Party Integrations
- Helping develop a technology strategy for your business.
How to Choose the Right Partner
Choosing the right consultant for your business depends on your product development lifecycle to obtain your business goals. Although there are similarities in PDOs and SIs, such as offering development, testing, and delivery, the difference in the scope of work in development, testing, and delivery will help you identify what type of Salesforce expert you need.
Projects are Delivered by a SIs
- Customization of a single salesforce org (that’s not repeatable)
- Implementation cycle that can increase time to go live
Products are Delivered by a Salesforce PDO
- Phased Product Delivery Model (Repeatable)
- Security Reviews
- Agile Product Roadmap
- Salesforce Relationship and Guidance
- Selling with Salesforce
- Navigating the AppExchange and Salesforce Ecosystem
- Develop Go-To-Market Strategy
- Customer Success and Product Roadmap
- Time to go live is reduced
If you are looking for guidance on what service is the best for your organization’s current need, we are here to assist. Blueprint Advisory has a team of Salesforce experts who can help guide you through the Salesforce journey—interested in learning more? Then let’s talk some more!