Microsoft unveils Dynamics 365, AppSource

Microsoft has announced that it is taking the first step to bring its customers new, modern, enterprise-ready intelligent business apps with the introduction of Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Microsoft AppSource.

Takeshi Numoto, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Cloud + Enterprise, says that Microsoft Dynamics 365 evolves the company’s current CRM and ERP cloud solutions into one cloud service with new purpose-built apps to help manage specific business functions, including: Financials, Field Service, Sales, Operations, Marketing, Project Service Automation and Customer Service.

“Dynamics 365 apps are designed so they can be easily and independently deployed. That means you can start small and pay only for what you need. Yet they work together seamlessly so, as your business demands, you can grow into additional capabilities with ease. They include built-in insights, predictive intelligence and workflow optimization, all of which will be delivered through simple, easy-to-use, mobile experiences with offline capabilities,” says Numoto.

According to Numoto, Power BI and Cortana Intelligence will be natively embedded to help customers achieve their business goals with predictive insights, prescriptive advice and actionable next steps.

For example, Cortana Intelligence will enable cross-sell recommendations to help sales reps predict which products and services a customer will need. Access to IoT data inside Dynamics 365 for Field Service will enable pre-emptive action from field service agents by connecting asset monitoring and anomaly detection so they can take action before failures occur, avoiding costly customer service issues.

Deep integration between Dynamics 365 and Office 365 will connect the structured workflow of business apps with the unstructured work of collaboration and productivity.

For example, a sales person receives an email, and can respond directly in Office with a quote that is created based on information from both Finance and Sales apps, stored back to the right app, with right pricing, discounting, etc. All without the user having to leave Outlook.

Adapt and innovate in real-time

Numoto says Dynamics 365 apps will use a common data model, shared with Office 365, to simplify data management and integration across apps and business processes.

Dynamics 365 will also offer tech-savvy business customers/analysts, aka “citizen developers,” (using PowerApps, Power BI and Microsoft Flow) and professional developers (using Azure platforms services) a consistent business platform they can use to compose new apps and easily extend and modify existing ones.

“It will come with connectors that let you integrate with applications and services from Microsoft and our partners – including custom APIs and on-premises systems,” noted Numoto.

A place to find new apps and better ways to get things done

The Microsoft AppSource is the company’s new destination for business users to find and try out line-of-business SaaS apps from Microsoft and its partners. At launch AppSource contains more than 200 business SaaS apps, add-ins and content packs, including exclusive new industry-specific business apps from:

  • AFS Retail Execution” – An end-to-end solution for CPG organizations to use as they engage with their customers in the field, covering visit and merchandising, sales, asset management and audit as well as a full suite of BI and analytics.
  • AvePoint “Citizen Services” – Government organizations can automate incident reporting, response and resolution, so employees can solve issues faster and serve citizens better.
  • Veripark “Next Best Action” – Financial institutions can maximize the lifetime value of each customer and deliver a first-class customer-centric experience by making the right offer, at the right time, via the right channel.