New products, solutions and capabilities are coming in the Spring 2018 release for Dynamics 365 and the Business Application Platform.
A report published by Panorama Consulting on Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) revealed that Microsoft Dynamics overtook Oracle, to position itself in second place behind SAP. Significantly, this was the first major shakeup in several years; with current estimates of market share giving SAP 19%, Microsoft 16%, and Oracle 13% respectively.
Along with ERP, Microsoft is quickly tapping into customer relationship management solutions. Here, SalesForce still dominates with 22% of the market share, followed by SAP 13% and Oracle 10%. Yet Microsoft is steadily expanding its portfolio, prompting other leaders to more innovative and creative solutions. Partly, this can be attributed to the tech giant’s acquisition of LinkedIn in 2016, which has played a huge role in MS Dynamics emergence and CRM development. In comparison to other CRMs which require additional integration and configuration – this solution is now natively integrated with Sales Navigator, a powerful BRB sales tool by LinkedIn.
With reports for 2018 still yet to come, this gives us an opportunity to discuss current trends. It has been widely publicized that Microsoft is aggressively pushing new products and services by offering a variety of different benefits to business users. This was highlighted in February, when Microsoft announced that they will offer ‘OneDrive for Business services’ for free if customers finish the “remaining term” of existing contracts with competitors Box, DropBox, and Google.
Even more benefits are offered to Microsoft Partners, such as free licenses to adopt Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales internally – a really great opportunity for many companies. As a Microsoft Gold Partner in Application Development, TEAM enjoys this offering and already sees the benefits of a unified solution that incorporates LinkedIn Navigator, a customizable CRM system, and a number of Office 365 solutions. It’s not easy to switch to another CRM, but comprehensive support documentation makes it doable. Besides, several video courses are available, such as a 10-hour self-paced course: “Managing Customer Engagement with Microsoft Dynamics 365,” by Microsoft. I’m already on it and highly recommend to try it if you are interested in learning more about CRM and Dynamics 365 in particular– it’s very informative and enrollment is free of charge until June 2018.
Be prepared to learn even more tools and capabilities, as the spring 2018 release for Dynamics 365 and Business Application Platform includes new products including Dynamics 365 for Marketing and Dynamics 365 for Sales Professionals. Not to mention Power BI solutions for data management and new application platform capabilities. In total, the release notes document consists of 222 pages. With this said, it is a real challenge to keep up with Dynamics 365 innovations; with learning, training, and consultant support becoming more and more valuable.