Highlights of the Dynamics 365 Spring 2018 Update
The Dynamics 365 Spring 2018 Update was officially announced last week and continues Microsoft’s dedication to innovation. Intelligence and Digital Transformation were main themes. Microsoft has been and continues to be a leader in the Digital Transformation Revolution. One recurring theme of the update is strengthening the Digital Feedback Loop
At the center of the Digital Feedback Loop is data. This data from customers, products, and people is fuel for intelligence, ensuring each customer an amazing journey. Dynamics 365 is built around this data and intelligence. Digital technologies are applied to more intelligently engage customers and empower employees. To read James Phillips announcement in its entirety, click here. The Spring 2018 release focuses on three main areas: business process applications, intelligence infused throughout, and application platform capabilities.
The Dynamics 365 Spring 2018 Update also features deeper integrations with Office 365 applications including Outlook, Teams, Sharepoint, Stream video, Azure, LinkedIn, and Bing.
Dynamics 365 Marketing
Dynamics 365 for Marketing is an entirely new component of Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement Application. Without leaving Dynamics 365, your marketing team can create engaging customer emails, landing pages, webforms, and manage in-person and online events. Customer Journeys allow you to build automated campaigns for individual prospects and customers. We will be having a much more detailed blog post very shortly on our experiences with Dynamics 365 for Marketing.
Dynamics 365 for Sales Professionals
An additional SKu for licensing DYnamics 365 for light duty sales professionals as introduced. This streamlined SKU allows a limited amount of customization, including additional forms and workflows. Dynamics 365 for Sales Professionals is designed for small teams looking to get started with an integrated sales solution. Users will have an easy setup experience including light customer support using case management and marketing. As your needs grow, the license can be upgraded to full Dynamics 365 licenses for extra more functionality.
Dynamics App for Outlook
If you are still using the clunky Outlook Add-in for Dynamics 365, well you need to take a look at the Dynamics App for Outlook. Recently release from an extensive preview. From within Outlook Desktop App, Web interface, or Outlook Mobile App, Dynamics 365 users can
- View and track emails, appointments
- Create new entity records – accounts, contacts, opportunities etc.
- Edit, Search and analyze data.
Basically anything you can do in the new Unified Interface, you can do in the Dynamics App for Outlook. But what makes this better that the old fashioned add-in is that it is configure once on in CRM, and it is available to all users that use Server Side Sync for email tacking. Your IT staff will love this add in! Read more in this blog from the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Team Blog.
PowerApps, CDS for Apps and PowerBI Apps
Two trends over the past few years that continue to develop is the continued appification and componentization of Dynamics 365 and this update is no exception to the trend. Dynamics 365 8.2 introduced the idea of Customer Service Hubs which were a special limited version of the regular Dynamics 365 interface and that continues with marketing, sales, fields service and psa hubs.
Common Data Service for Apps is an evolution of CDS which allows developers (And non-developers) to build stand alone applications that access and update Dynamics 365 data. Customization of Dynamics 365 is moving to the CDS app and we can expect to see continued refinement around these areas.
Also launching soon are Power BI Insights apps. These apps are tailored to the needs of different departments or functions and will tap into Dynamcis 365 as well as third party data. The first of the apps will be for Sales and for Service. These apps will be embedded in Dynamics 365 and enable users to generate analyses of customer relationships, translated as a score that is calculated from transactions, customer sentiment and client interactions. These apps will be extensible so that Dynamics 365 users will be able to build their own models . This service is in preview and should be released in Fall 2018
Want more information?
The Dynamics 365 Spring 2018 Update (Officially release 9.2) will begin to roll out to Dynamics 365 Online 9.0 systems in the April 2018 timeframe. If you have yet to upgrade to Dynamics 365 9.0 release, check out our how-to for easy instructions on scheduling your update.
For a comprehensive synopsis of what’s coming in the Dynamics 365 Spring 2018 update, check out the downloadable PDF of the release notes.
And don’t forget to sign up for Microsoft webcast of the March 28 virtual launch to describe in further detail some these new components, ahead of April availability.
Finally, as a trusted Dynamics 365 partner in the SMB space, enCloud9 has the knowledge to help you to successfully deliver a custom Dynamics 365 system to your organization designed around the idea of increasing sales and developing deeper relationships with prospects and customers. Contact us today to start on that journey.