Dynamics 365 as an enabler for consolidation into the cloud

ERP systems have a lot of interconnected moving parts that are dependent on each other, and hence the ERP implementations are in most cases done with all the plans and efforts required to get all processes in place.

CRM systems are different. It’s possible to cherry-pick parts and get going fast without really caring about the more delicate bits, pieces and processes that should be in place. If you have your leads, customers and opportunities in place, it works.

If you plan to go Dynamics 365 and choose to not build from small pilots and piece by piece, consider creating a roadmap where you start by going module by module, as in consolidation on Marketing, Sales, Customer Service/Case Management, Field Services, Project Service Automation, Operations and Insights.

So, the first step would be to have a look on Adobe Marketing Cloud that will be part of the Dynamics 365 during 2017, when Adobe have made their integrations and tweaked their solutions to fit into Dynamics 365. It’s not a solution that comes as brand new – you find it here, (change region at the bottom left on that page if you want your local language. Bring it to your management and users), no matter if you run a public och commercial business, and map the needs of your organisation to what Adobe delivers in the cloud. The potential for consolidation, and hence bring down the TCO for this area is huge in both public sector and commercial sector because the budgets for information and marketing are significant.

 

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Next step is to go for the Customer Service, Case Management module and processes related to those – e-services is a big thing in Sweden, and Dynamics 365 is a very relevant back-end for e-services-based processes. Other processes could be simplified ITIL-processes like incident management. Or new employee onboarding processes with all the forms and data that goes back and forth when new employees arrive.  Customer Service is the big opportunity though because most organisations have both internal helpdesks or support and customer facing ditto. Case Management, ‘Ärendehantering’ in Swedish are also an area where you will find old and fragmented solution to consolidate to the cloud. Self-service portals is another part of this solution that may render big wins in efficiency, lower TCO and added value to users, customers and citizens. I did write this mainly as a public sector thing, but this could also be products or services sold to someone and the case is a business deal. As in traditional CRM.

Whatever cases or deals are generated in the previous step are candidates for Field Services. If cases trigger any kind of action that involves resources to go to a place and fix or maintain something, deliver a product and service, help someone och doing an emergency action for something, then the Field Services module is where that should be done – because of the integration with the previous steps and the following steps. The visibility between the vertical functions and roles opens up for delivering solutions in a much more efficient way where everyone has a 360-degree view of all steps involved in a process. Consolidating this part to the cloud will build upon the previous steps and the next steps, so checking this with everyone delivering something in the field will give you the opp to give them new efficient tools for doing that, with full obile access to all data in the field thru the cloud.

If the products or services are large scale and require a fair amount of resources, planning and actions, then the Project Automation Services are the go-to module. Consolidate all project tools into the PSA will put this into the context of the previous steps and the next steps.

The next step, that could be the first or in any order, is Operations – the full ERP with all the bits and pieces that come with that. Here you have the financials, invoicing, bookkeeping, logistics, warehouse, manufacturing and so forth. You will almost always replace another older ERP or go for the could because you want to consolidate to the cloud, and to the other parts described previously. The barriers are gone between the modules in the CRM and the ERP, and you can now integrate everything with anything else.

And the last step is Insights, Business Intelligence and all the perks around Dynamics 365. Including IoT, Machine Learning, integration with Office365 and anything else Microsoft and most other systems on the market thru the Web API’s.

Altogether this is a sea of features, functions, systems and processes that can be bundled into one cloud solution that takes away the pain of buying, installing and maintaining hardware and give your users one unified solution that they can onboard easily and access with any device 24/7/365. With a 360 view.

 

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Doing the ROI, TCO and other calculations with your CFO is the key driver. And a roadmap that plans for a cloud vision 3-5 years ahead will help you to head in the right direction and stay in the right track.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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