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Wirelessly Connecting to New Opportunities

At Salesforce.com’s annual Dreamforce conference last week in San Francisco, Qualcomm Wireless Reach joined over 135,000 marketers, developers and hackers in celebrating the strength of social reporting and cloud-based communication.

Dreamforce touts itself as the world’s largest vendor-led technology gathering, with more than 1,250 sessions and a $1 million hackathon. What I found even more impressive was to see such a large event recognize the importance of smaller, more community oriented organizations and nonprofits with an entire track dedicated to highlighting these groups and a dedicated part of the keynote presentation focused on them as well. Along this line, Wireless Reach and Grameen Foundation presented together on a panel about stories, best practices and tips on building social and mobile applications that transform lives throughout the world. In particular, how Wireless Reach collaborates with over 375 stakeholders to strengthen economic and social development through the power of mobile technology.

In an effort to help Wireless Reach continue its success, our team recently established a new workflow that utilizes the Salesforce platform to manage day-to-day activities, our annual proposal process and project deliverables. Tom Bridges, Director of IT at Qualcomm, spoke on a panel representing Wireless Reach in these efforts. Taylor Downs, Co-Founder and CEO of Vera Solutions also joined the panel and shared an example from the field about Grameen Foundation's latest technology platform, TaroWorks. This suite of mobile tools is fully optimized around specific field operations management and analytics needs for organizations working in remote areas in transforming the efficiency and effectiveness of social impact organizations.

Wireless Reach is using TaroWorks in a project with Grameen Foundation in Indonesia to deliver information services tailored to the needs of social enterprises that focus exclusively on working with the poor, enabling them to become producers, distributors or consumers in rural and remote areas. Launched in early 2013, TaroWorks now has 26 customers in 11 countries, most of which are social enterprises working in previously unconnected and underdeveloped regions. Using data collected through Salesforce, Grameen Foundation and Wireless Reach are working to develop tools to increase the reach and effectiveness of these services.

Taylor Downs from Vera Solutions also spoke of an example in Kenya where their client, HoneyCare Africa, uses TaroWorks for three main purposes:

  1. To register new farmers (“leads”) in the field.
  2. To implement an easy-to-operate platform capturing data during hive maintenance.
  3. And to more efficiently and accurately track honey collection by on-site Honey Care staff.

It was rewarding to have Wireless Reach included in the panel discussion and to share how we are streamlining projects using performance analytics data that saves thousands of hours and helps to build stronger relationships with the grantee community. I definitely recommend checking out the conference website to see even more ways people are wirelessly connecting to each other and to new opportunities.

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