Robert Desisto

A member of the Gartner Blog Network

Robert P. Desisto
VP Distinguished Analyst
14 years at Gartner
24 years IT industry

Robert Desisto is a Vice President and Distinguished Analyst in Gartner Research. He is responsible for managing the software as a service (SaaS) research agenda. His research focuses primarily on the use of SaaS as a delivery model for applications. Read Full Bio

Come see me at Gartner Symposium in Orlando

by Robert Desisto  |  October 3, 2013  |  Comments Off

I will be presenting on two exciting topics at the Gartner Symposium in Orlando, Florida the week of October 7.  Look forward to seeing you.

My sessions are:

Creating Practical SaaS Strategies

8 October, 2013 (2:30 PM – 3:30 PM)

Software as a Service is at different maturity levels among varying software markets. Even the meaning of what is a SaaS application has morphed, creating confusion with potential customers. Our presentation provides clarity to the state of SaaS adoption across multiple software segments, and best practices for creating a successful SaaS strategy.

Mobility will Boost Sales, While Causing CIOs Headaches

10 October, 2013 (10:15 AM – 11:15 AM)

The presentation will provide advice on how sales organizations can move from a rigid, low batter life, heavy laptop based world to a world of endless mobile opportunity to boost sales performance while not compromising IT policies and procedures.

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Category: Cloud mobile mobile sales SaaS     Tags: ,

New Gartner Vendor Rating Published

by Robert Desisto  |  September 20, 2013  |  Comments Off

Gartner has released the 2013 vendor rating for All 2012 ratings have been updated and new catagories have been added including Marketing Cloud, Communities, and The vendor rating was developed by a team of 12 Gartner analysts representing multiple application and service areas. It is a  good read for both existing customers and prospects.

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Category: Cloud CRM     Tags: ,

Will Enterprises Buy into’s New Performance Edition?

by Robert Desisto  |  September 17, 2013  |  Comments Off

On 12 August 2013, announced its first major pricing and packaging overhaul in eight years by eliminating Unlimited Edition from its portfolio and launching the new Performance Edition to appeal to broad CRM projects. The new Performance Edition will combine Service and Sales cloud and continue to provide free access to for Performance Edition users. The Performance Edition will also bundle in,, Live Agent, Knowledge and Salesforce Identity. The list price for the new edition is $300 per user per month and will be available on 4 November 2013. The current equivalent capabilities will list at over $500 per user per month when combining Unlimited Edition and the bundled options. Unlimited Edition will no longer be available for sale or upgrade from lower editions as of 4 November 2013. will create new quotes for Unlimited Edition contracts through 3 November 2013 and will honor open Unlimited Edition quotes for up to 30 days after the day quoted. Existing Unlimited Edition customers will not be forced to migrate to the new Performance Edition.

Check out the just published research note Announces New Comprehensive CRM Edition.

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Category: Cloud CRM salesforce automation     Tags: ,

How to Ease the Planning, Sourcing and Implementation of SaaS Projects

by Robert Desisto  |  September 4, 2013  |  1 Comment

My collegues and I just published a very comprensive Gartner Special Report on planning, sourcing and implementing SaaS Projects. The Special Report has a number of downloadable spreadsheet toolkits to help estimate TCO, evaluate applicablity of SaaS, and implement specific contract language for SaaS contracts.  The report takes the reader from the definition of SaaS to architecture considerations to providing guidence on implementation resources needed to be succussful in SaaS projections  Anyone engaged in SaaS applications should take a look!

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Category: Applications Cloud SaaS Software as a Service     Tags:

Oracle and Partnership More Hype Than Substance

by Robert Desisto  |  August 22, 2013  |  Comments Off

During the earlier part of the summer I was enjoying a vacation in Hawaii. I took a peak a my iPhone and I saw a flurry of email about the partnership Oracle annouced with Knowing both vendors very well my first impression and ultimate conclusion was the annoucement was more about hype then any tangible substance. As I read email and various articles written about it in the press it was very clear no one was actually looking at for the real substance that was in the annoucement. I decided that since the annoucement did not amount to much not to write on it. However, I started getting calls from clients with all kinds of questions such as: “Is Oracle pulling out of the CRM market?,” “Will Oracle salespeople sell” and “Is this the first step in Oracle buying”. Many of the same unfounded conclusions I saw in email.  I realized I had to write something to distill really what this annoucment meant, or more importantly what it did not mean.  When writing the research I thought about Seinfeld, the popular television show that aired in the 90’s in the US. A show or in this case an annoucement about nothing. I suggest anyone who wants to gain a true understanding of the annoucement should read, Announcement Will Have Little Impact on Sales Application Decision Makers.

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Category: Cloud CRM Oracle salesforce automation     Tags: ,

The Right Definition of SaaS Will Reduce Its Business Value Uncertainties

by Robert Desisto  |  August 14, 2013  |  Comments Off

Often clients call me asking whether a vendor is truly providing software as a service.  Clients ask because some vendors engage in “cloud washing” their offerings. Basically in a desire to get higher valuations for their company a vendor  claims software as a service or cloud computing. It does not matter what a vendor calls itself, it does matter how they delivery their service. It is not to say that managed hosting or on premises are wrong. In many cases those may be the more optimal delivery model. However, Customer considering a vendor’s offering should not assume a vendor  offers SaaS and its potential benefits. To eliminate this confusion I just recently published a research note, The Right Definition of SaaS Will Reduce Its Business Value Uncertainties.  This note provides a clear concise definition of SaaS, including emerging concepts such as private SaaS, and community SaaS.

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Category: Applications Cloud SaaS     Tags:

Ten Ways to Avoid SaaS Delivery Problems and Protect Your Organization

by Robert Desisto  |  June 21, 2013  |  1 Comment

Business application managers have a long-term responsibility to protect their company from potential SaaS delivery problems. I recommend 10 best practices to avoid common mistakes that can lead to SaaS delivery issues. In the recently published research report Ten Ways to Avoid SaaS Delivery Problems and Protect Your Organization  I layout the specfic best practices with links to other Gartner research that provides more detail on each best practice.

The report recommends to:

  1. Ensure proper treatment of intellectual property in the cloud.
  2. Estimate total costs over five years.
  3. Evaluate integration scenarios.
  4. Assess scale and performance.
  5. Model and track consumption patterns.
  6. Have a disaster recovery plan.
  7. Gain appropriate service-level assurances.
  8. Ensure provider security processes meet organizational standards.
  9. Develop an adequate exit strategy.
  10. Prepare for multiple SaaS releases per year.

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Category: Cloud SaaS     Tags: ,

Laptops Facing Extinction for Sales People?

by Robert Desisto  |  May 23, 2013  |  Comments Off

Smartphone and tablet usage continues to expand for salespeople. Just today I was talking to a Gartner client who informed me that the iPad is the primary device their salespeople use during the day to access their sales force automation system. Why? Client said it is simple, it takes 5 – 10 minutes to get a laptop ready to be used and their salespeople do 6-8 sales calls a day. The bottomline it is painful. The iPad is instant on, or left on (due to long battery life) and as the client put it “they are off to the races”. Pre-iPad days, salespeople use to spend their nights entering a days worth of work (something they really did completely) with their laptop. Now, the end of the day is truly the end of the day. The laptop is not dead yet, it still is the preferred device for detailed content creation but its overall usefulness continues to diminish. I just published a research note, Understand How the Three C’s Can Maximize Sales Mobility that dicusses strategies for optimizing mobile devices for sales people.

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Category: CRM ipad mobile sales salesforce automation Uncategorized     Tags: ,

How to Determine your Org Strategy

by Robert Desisto  |  May 10, 2013  |  Comments Off

 An org in the vernacular is a logical instance of data and metadata for a set of users. Selecting single org, multi org or a combination remains a key decision that will improve the effectiveness of projects for which business application managers are responsible.  In a research note I recently published, How to Manage Orgs for Optimal Benefit, I provide a framework business application managers can use to determine the most optimial Org strategy for their organization

When looking at my customer inquiries in the past year, org structures are in the top 3 questions I recieve for clients about to embark on a project. project managers must determine how many orgs they should use in their projects. An org unit is bound by both capacity limits (number of users and storage) and execution computing resources (query sizes and API limits). The specific limitations will be determined by the specific offering and edition. Therefore, making an incorrect decsion will have impact on the success on a project.

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Category: CRM SaaS salesforce automation Software as a Service     Tags:’s App-Based Pricing Benefits Some, but Is More Expensive for Others

by Robert Desisto  |  April 18, 2013  |  1 Comment changed pricing for on 4 March 2013, from a per-user, per-month price to a price based on per application, per user, per month. user-based pricing had basically two options: Enterprise Edition ($50 per user, per month) and Unlimited Edition ($75 per user, per month). The primary differences between the two editions were based on object, tab, application and storage limits.

The new pricing enables customers to mix and match Light Application and Enterprise Application subscription types. This means a company could deploy a Light Application and Enterprise Application to the same user. It is important to note that continues to be packaged for no additional charge with Sales and Service Cloud for those same users. In a research note I just published’s App-Based Pricing Benefits Some, but Is More Expensive for Others, I discuss the implications this price change has on existing and new customers.

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Category: Applications Cloud CRM SaaS Software as a Service     Tags: ,