As a leader in a Microsoft-focused technology firm, it isn’t a big leap to say I’m a fan of Dynamics 365 for sales, marketing and PSA. I’m clearly not alone. In addition to 10’s of thousands of buyers, it looks like the analyst community is giving Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 platform high marks.
Microsoft recently shared this new report from Forrester, titled “The Forrester Wave: Sales Force Automation Solutions, Q2 2017”. In the report, Forrester details how buyers are reshaping modern selling and the tools they’re utilizing. Forrester wrote, “With all the hype around artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, Microsoft shows considerable maturity in both its execution and vision for how advanced analytics will transform selling. Customers rate Microsoft’s pace and penchant for innovation very highly. The potential around analytics only improves with its acquisition of LinkedIn.”
Forrester evaluated solutions for 10 of the leading CRM vendors across a number of criteria and gave Dynamics 365 a near perfect score for their product vision. The 10 vendors included companies like NetSuite, Salesforce, SAP and Oracle to name a few. The evaluation included analysis and scoring across 35 criteria and each vendor had to:
- Offer a solution suitable for enterprise organizations with complex requirements. Each of the products included in this Forrester Wave deliver a broad range of functionality within its core capabilities and provides a platform and business user tools to extend this functionality to meet the unique needs of each of its customers.
- Provide a solution targeted at multiple industries. Evaluated vendors target buyers across a diverse range of industries and sales models, including B2B, B2C, and B2B2C.
- Have a product in general release and in use by customers. The solutions have a specific release that was generally available at the time of data collection for this evaluation, with references available for contact.
- Appear regularly in Forrester customer inquiries. Each of the included applications is of high interest to a large sample of Forrester customers, as evidenced by the frequency of appearance in inquiries.
Data Sources Used in Forrester Wave
Forrester used a combination of three data sources to assess the strengths and weaknesses of each solution.
Vendor surveys. Forrester surveyed vendors on their capabilities as they relate to the evaluation criteria. Once they analyzed the completed vendor surveys, they conducted vendor calls where necessary to gather details of vendor qualifications.
Product demos. They asked vendors to conduct demonstrations of their products’ functionality and used findings from these product demos to validate details of each vendor’s product capabilities.
Customer reference calls. To validate product and vendor qualifications, Forrester also conducted reference calls with three of each vendor’s current customers.
“Microsoft delivers on intelligent seller productivity” – Forrester 2017 Q2 Report
It seems as if the wins just keep coming for Microsoft and the Microsoft customer ecosystem. Advancements in the product, integration with ERP, marketing and LinkedIn offer deep, demonstrable value for customer seeking to sell and service more effectively. In an age where “digital transformation” is fast-becoming the most common path to a competitive edge, it seems like they’re on the right track.
Dynamics 365 PSA (Project Service Automation)
In addition to becoming one of the fastest-growing sales, marketing and customer services solutions, Dynamics 365 has made inroads in a long list of industry and specialty areas. The architecture lends well to free-thinking business leaders and technologists.
Our company is well-know for helping project-driven companies, so Dynamics 365 Project Service Automation is a natural fit for many of our clients.
When is Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation (PSA) the right fit?
March 11, 2017 by @Robbie Morrison
“Because it is based on a CRM platform, the solution is fairly flexible and many per-company customizations can be created without back-end programming. Integration with Office 365 and other Microsoft tools is robust as well. However, this flexibility comes with a price. While the solution provides strong collaboration benefits between sales and delivery resources, it is most effective for companies with smaller delivery teams and less complex projects.
Examples of companies that might benefit from Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation are marketing and media firms, light management/consulting firms, smaller IT services firms, and many other white-collar consulting firms. Although I’m calling out smaller companies, it could be a great fit for large companies as long as their project delivery is still fairly simple.
Think about a company that provides creative design for television ads vs. a consultancy that deploys large, integrated ERP systems. The latter may take anywhere from 6 months to 3 years and require multiple milestones, different skill-sets and formal call-center or on-site support. Other business that may struggle with CRM-based PSA are Architecture and Engineering, Construction, Software Publishers or even specialty manufacturers.”
Learn more about Dynamics 365
If you’re a Dynamics 365 customer and you aren’t taking advantage of the sales, marketing and customer service offerings, now is the time. Visit velosio.com to watch video demos, testimonials and walk-throughs of the product. It won’t be long before you’re as big a fan as I am.
About Eric Forgo
Eric serves as the Director of Business Intelligence and CRM for SBS Group. He is responsible for developing and driving innovative solutions, overseeing related services and ensuring SBS Group customers derive maximum business value from their technology investments.
Eric has spent more than 20 years in the Microsoft ecosystem, holding executive positions with leading ISVs and consulting firms where he led teams in the deployment of Microsoft ERP and CRM. In addition to his technology background, Eric spent the early part of his career in financial management. He is a CPA with a BS in Accounting from the University of Connecticut and an MBA from Boston University with a concentration in Finance.