Microsoft Dynamics 365 July 2017 Update

Today at Microsoft Inspire, our largest annual partner event, we are introducing a host of new offerings designed to expand opportunity for our global partner community.  As a part of this motion, we’re excited today to share more information about new ways ISVs can build intelligent apps with us, and we’re also happy to announce the general availability of Microsoft Dynamics 365, July 2017 update.

At our recent Business Forward events in New York and in London, senior leaders from our company talked about how Dynamics 365 can be a digital transformation accelerant. With Dynamics 365 July update, we continue our journey with Dynamics 365 to deliver modern, intelligent services that connect all the data across your enterprise, and help you make better, faster decisions to achieve optimal outcomes.

Our goal is to empower lines of business with purpose-built applications that allow any organization to start based on organizational needs and scale on demand, adding additional solutions over time.

For our Enterprise edition, this month we will expand our purpose-built application portfolio with general availability of new applications and solutions for our customers to: provide a more customer centric retail experience; to better access and nurture the best talent resources; and to dramatically increase the effectiveness of the sales organization. We’re also excited to announce the preview of new applications for sales and marketing in our Business edition, optimized for small and medium sized businesses.

While continually enhancing our portfolio of applications, we are also expanding the availability of these services into new data centers and introducing new Hybrid options.

Expanding our application portfolio

Today we are announcing with LinkedIn the general availability of the Microsoft Relationship Sales solution, which brings together LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales, Enterprise edition to help sellers build stronger and better relationships with buyers while achieving higher productivity. With relationship-centered insights, sellers can deliver the authentic and personal engagement that today’s buyers demand, at scale. The solution brings together disparate data across CRM, social networks, and productivity systems, such as Office 365 and LinkedIn so sellers can finally make sense of the data they already have and unify the sales experience around relationships.

We’re also making it easier for customers to take advantage of this solution by introducing a single offer that brings together LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Dynamics 365 for Sales that is roughly half the cost of competitive solutions in the market. 

Dynamics 365 for Retail is designed to provide retailers with an integrated end-to-end view of their operations with centralized management and clear visibility across stores, employees, customers, inventory, and financials.  This new application will be generally available later this month, providing retailers with:

  • Modern point of sale experiences that empower front line employees to deliver better customer service and improve sales
  • Data driven retail experiences that improve your customer engagement at every point
  • AI driven intelligence infused throughout to deliver integrated, optimal, outcomes across every sales channel – from brick and mortar to social and online
  • Integrated workforce management for store managers to create and publish shifts and schedules.  For store associates, we are enabling the visibility of shifts and schedules and capability to submit absence requests.

Dynamics 365 for Talent provides a 360-degree view of your workforce: from sourcing and recruiting, to onboarding and retention. Also generally available later in July, this new application empowers an organization to:

  • Hire the best talent, more quickly, with integrated LinkedIn Recruiter experiences that enable dynamic
    candidate profiles to give managers and interviewers the most up-to-date information
  • Deliver personalized onboarding experiences that accelerate an employee’s ability to deliver impact with targeted activities and learning resources, along with access to relevant contacts
  • Maintain an up to date view of employee experiences through a consolidated HR profile spanning Office 365, Dynamics 365, and LinkedIn data

Preview for Dynamics 365 for Sales and Dynamics 365 for Marketing – The new Dynamics 365 for Sales and Dynamics 365 for Marketing applications in the Business edition are designed to help businesses nurture more sales-ready leads, close more deals faster, and make smarter decisions. Both applications will be available in Private Preview later this month for customers and partners participating in the Dynamics 365 Insider Program, followed by Public Preview soon after.

Enhancements to existing applications

We are continuing to enhance our existing applications and provide new value to our customers. Some of the highlights are:  

  • Expansion of Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, Business edition – While already available in the US and Canadian markets, our geographic expansion of Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations, Business edition (formerly Dynamics 365 for Financials, Business edition) continues with general availability in the United Kingdom as of July 1st. In addition to our continued commitment to geographic expansion, we plan to increase the functionality and extensibility of Finance and Operations, Business edition significantly later this year. 
  • New Hybrid deployment options – On July 1st we delivered on our commitment to provide multiple deployment options for our customers. We introduced a local business data option which is now available and allows our customer to deploy and run their Dynamics 365 for Finance and Operations (On-premise), Enterprise edition in their own data centers. More details on this option can be found here.
  • Prospect to cash integration – A new prospect-to-cash end-to-end business process integration has also been introduced with this July update. Traditionally this type of business process within an organization has been split up across multiple system of record silos. Dynamics 365 leverages the strengths of the individual Dynamics 365 components and connects them via Common Data Service (CDS). While the data is flowing between the Finance + Operations and Sales applications, customers can carry out sales and marketing activities and handle the order fulfillment with inventory management in a seamless manner. More information on data integration with CDS is available here.

These are just a sample of the many highlights included in the July update for new applications and existing applications. For a comprehensive list and more details, make sure you visit the “What’s New” section of our public roadmap and our Dynamics 365 product documentation portal for more details.

Expanding our service availability through new data centers

We are continuously investing in expanding our services to provide a global platform for innovation. It is becoming increasingly important to respond to the unique business and regulatory requirements for industries demanding data protection and knowledge of where their data is stored. Customers who operate in these highly regulated industries have entrusted this service to Microsoft Dynamics 365. Microsoft maintains an ever-expanding network of data centers around the globe, and verifies that each data center meets stringent security requirements. We understand that some customers must maintain their data in a specific geographic location. Recently, Dynamics 365 for Sales, Customer Service, Field Service, and Professional Services Automation in our Enterprise edition were made available in Germany and in the United Kingdom data centers.

In closing

We are incredibly excited to get this new update into the hands of our partners and customers.  Please visit the Dynamics 365 Roadmap to see supplemental information about new features and learn more about what new features are in development as we prepare for our next wave of updates.

Your opinion matters to us and we are always looking for new product suggestions and ideas from our customer fan base.  Please continue to submit product ideas using the ideas portal. Of course, you can always visit us here for a comprehensive overview of Dynamics 365.