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The MSDW Podcast

The MSDynamicsWorld.com (MSDW) podcast explores news, ideas, and events in the Microsoft Dynamics ERP and CRM community.
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Feb 16, 2024

The Biz Apps Classroom welcomes its first guest on this episode, Microsoft MVP and partner executive Vlad Sarov joins us to talk about the work he, podcast co-host Julie Yack, and others have been doing on a project to bring Microsoft Business Applications skills to adults in Ukraine through an ongoing series of training cohorts. The program follows Microsoft's prescribed Business Application professional skilling collection, but the team have taken the extra effort to translate the learning materials, adapt the guidance to allow for online interaction, and develop automated translation capabilities to allow trainers who don't speak Ukrainian to still help educate the students.

 

Vlad and Julie share the program's history, the team effort that was required to launch it and keep it running, the outcomes for graduates, and how they hope to expand the training to more cohorts in Ukraine and perhaps in other parts of the world.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - Vlad's impressions of last year's MVP Summit
  • 3:45 - Hatching a plan to create learning cohorts in Ukraine
  • 6:45 - Translation technology that enables a multi-language program
  • 9:30 - Why a program from Microsoft offered a good starting point for translation and adapting to a Ukrainian cohort
  • 12:30 - Stories of some of the students
  • 14:30 - The typical student experience each week
  • 18:15 - Signups available for spring and summery 2024 cohorts - how to get accepted, what is expected of students, and how the trainers adapt to student needs like difficult circumstances
  • 23:00 - Hiring people who complete these training cohorts - what Microsoft partners can do to help
  • 26:30 - Industries that the students are coming from, and why industry knowledge helps
  • 28:00 - How students are learning about the program and gaining the trust to join it
  • 31:00 - What's next for this training approach - reaching more translations and languages

 

Links & Resources:

Feb 15, 2024

This episode is sponsored by Vertex.

 

Tax engines have a unique role to play in the performance of mid-market businesses. Our guest on this episode, Pete Olanday, Director of Consulting, Vertical Solutions: Retail, Leasing, Telecommunications, at Vertex discusses how implementing a tax engine can help mid-market companies streamline processes, enhance scalability, and ensure compliance in the face of evolving regulations.

 

Pete discusses some of the biggest challenges that mid-market firms face related to sales tax and how those tie into other strategic initiatives like process automation, business expansion, and managing operational costs.

Pete also offers context for how he sees Vertex clients aligning tax automation with their other ERP initiatives. He offers guidance for tax executives and IT decision-makers on what to expect from an investment in a tax engine and make suggestions about how to avoid common pitfalls that companies experience when trying to scale their tax solutions.

 

From Vertex:

Vertex integrates with Dynamics 365 Finance, Supply Chain, Business Central, Sales, and Commerce. To learn more about Vertex’s tax solutions for Dynamics 365, visit https://www.vertexinc.com/partners/microsoft-dynamics-365 or email us at microsoftdynamics@vertexinc.com.

Feb 7, 2024

On this episode, we are talking role-based training: where it works well, what roles tend to benefit, and how the concept has evolved in the Microsoft Dynamics and Power Platform ecosystem.
        
Role-based training in the Biz Apps space coincides with changes in Microsoft certifications, and that that has helped shift the focus of learners away from memorizing facts about software and toward developing skills, says our co-host, Julie Yack. And while Microsoft have their own overall approach to role-based training and certification, it is not the only reference out there. Julie shares some of her experiences training people in a range of roles and settings.
        
Show Notes:

  • 1:00 - How Julie thinks about roles from the perspective of a trainer
  • 2:30 - How to think about the trend toward role-based training in the broader context of jobs, hiring, and certification paths
  • 3:30 - The context and history behind role-based certifications from Microsoft - transition to a focus on outcomes
  • 5:00 - How the emergence of Power Platform and other changes at Microsoft resulted in a shift in training priorities
  • 9:00 - The relevance of Microsoft's core role-based learning paths for Biz Apps professionals
  • 10:00 - Why classroom training remains so effectiv
  • 12:00 - Career goals that align with role-based training
  • 14:00 - More tips from Julie about thinking about role-based opportunities
Jan 31, 2024

Microsoft just released their plans for 2024 Release Wave 1 of Dynamics 365 and Power Platform, and the Finance and Operations suite will be adding a range of process and data-themed capabilities. Generative AI is part of that roadmap too, of course, but our guest on this episode, Microsoft VP Georg Glantschnig, shares that his broader focus is on improving automation, solution composability, and data-centric capabilities.

 

Georg discusses some of the highlights of the current release wave and, while this is not an "all AI" conversation, he explains that Copilot will continue to be a priority for the Dynamics 365 team in the future. His team's approach of bringing customers and partners into preview and GA cycles should help Microsoft launch new AI-based capabilities that users want, he believes. And he shares his outlook on how Copilot could become more advanced over time, from today's productivity tools toward a future where autonomous systems handle end-to-end processes, asking users for help only in exceptional cases. 

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - Georg's background in the ERP space going back to the 1990s
  • 3:30 - Microsoft's ERP position (and dividing Finance & SCM) at the time Georg joined the team in 2019 and how priorities have evolved
  • 5:15 - How Georg positions Microsoft's ERP progress over the years
  • 7:45 - Setting priorities in product planning
  • 9:30 - Top level themes of 2024 Release Wave 1 plans
  • 13:45 - What to expect from the launch of the D365 Finance Premium license option
  • 15:30 - One Version updates for the product and what it means for customers
  • 18:00 - How have customers adapted to the cloud, especially those who have been on D365 in the cloud for several years
  • 19:15 - Automation and composabilty scenarios in the new release wave
  • 22:30 - Domino's UK story: Inventory planning at scale with D365 and AI-driven demand planning
  • 26:00 - Looking ahead to F&O product planning priorities:  operational process improvement and generative AI
  • 29:00 - The journey for AI advancements - low stakes to high stakes
  • 31:30 - Microsoft's product management approach to approach planning for future AI-related scenarios for F&O products
  • 35:30 - How much will D365 F&O AI capabilities cost users?
  • 38:30 - How is the One Dynamics One Platform (ODOP) initiative progressing?
  • 41:30 - How F&O scenarios will expand their use of Power Platform
  • 43:30 - Approaching concerns over cost of Dataverse usage
  • 45:30 - The trend of building custom capabilities on Power Platform
  • 46:00 - Other 2024 plans for Georg's team
Jan 24, 2024

Conferences play a key role in many Dynamics and Power Platform professionals' training plans. On this episode, Julie and Jason talk about the types of educational content that are gaining popularity at Microsoft-focused events, how sessions are selected, and how to get the most educational value out of the next event you choose to spend your time at.

 

Julie gives an update on planning for the next Power Platform 24 virtual event on March 20 and 21 and their call for speakers. We also talk about Jason's recent trip to the NRF Big Show 2024 event, why AI could become a bigger part of event attendees experiences soon, balancing structure and spontaneity in an event schedule, and whether session selection teams are doing a better job encouraging participation from a diverse range of presenters.

 

Show Notes:

 

  • 6:30 - Push toward beginner content at events
  • 14:15 - Julie's experience with conference session selection processes
  • 18:45 - Planning your next conference experience and setting fair expectations with session presenters
  • 23:30 - Why Julie believes AI has a role to play in all future conferences for session planning
  • 26:30 - Jason and Julie's event plans for 2024 so far
Jan 22, 2024

The latest updates to Metafile's AP Automation solution blend improving AI-based capabilities with their trusted capabilities around process and data efficiency. Company veteran Doug Bertram talks with Biz Apps Buzz host Amiee Keenan about his experiences watching the company's AI tools evolve before his eyes, with extraction and error handling capabilities improving almost before his eyes. Doug tells the story of a demo thrown off when the solution's AI engine learned to correctly interpret an invoice field that had been failing a few weeks earlier. And he explains how improvements in understanding documents raises the bar for AP fundamentals like automating 2-way and 3-way PO matching and for approving invoices without a PO. 

To learn more about the latest updates from Metafile, contact them at info@metafile.com.

About Biz Apps Buzz
Biz Apps Buzz is the newest podcast series from MSDynamicsWorld.com, focusing on breaking news and announcements from Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Power Platform channel partners. The conversation is broadcast live on LinkedIn and YouTube, and the recording is then made available as a podcast. 

Dec 27, 2023

Julie and Jason are talking about goals and goal setting. While neither of them is a self-described goal setter, they both acknowledge that taking a goal-oriented approach can be a helpful tool for professional development.

 

Using the SMART(ER) model as a reference point, they talk through different ways professionals in the Dynamics 365 and Power Platform space can set goals for their own professional development. They note examples of various people in the Microsoft community who have modelled great goal-setting behaviors for the rest of us, and they identify tools and programs that listeners can look at for further guidance and inspiration.

 

References:

Dec 21, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Vertex.

 

Larry Mellon , Tax Director – Chief Tax Office at Vertex, joins us to shed light on potential risks that businesses grapple with when they rely on their ERP's native tax functionality rather than a dedicated tax engine.

 

Larry tells us about his history with Vertex, working both internally and with both customers and jurisdictions on tax matters. He discusses some of the reasons why tax accuracy is so important to an organization and how any shortcomings can interfere with compliance, lead to audit risk, and affect staff allocation. He also explains the role a trusted tax engine can have in improving the auditor's role and optimizing staff allocation.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:00 - Larry's professional history at Vertex, in their tax office and working on the software
  • 1:45 - Why does tax automation software differ from native ERP tools?
  • 2:45 - Common challenges of accurate taxation
  • 3:45 - Changing rules for sales and use tax assessment
  • 5:30 - Top challenges in staying compliant
  • 6:15 - How reporting to tax jurisdictions works with a tax engine
  • 7:10 - Have tax jurisdictions adapted to receiving data from tax engines?
  • 8:30 - Reporting for auditors
  • 9:45 - How tax engine deployment improves staff allocation

 

Vertex integrates with Dynamics 365 F&O, Business Central, Sales, and  Commerce. To learn more about Vertex’s integrations with Dynamics 365, visit https://vertexinc.com

 

Email: microsoftdynamics@vertexinc.com to discuss your specific tax needs.  Vertex integrates with F&O, Business Central, Sales & Commerce.

Dec 20, 2023
In our inaugural episode of the Biz Apps Buzz, host Amiee Keenan speaks with Cavallo’s head of strategic partnerships, Bob McAdam, about the company’s latest product updates. He shares updates on new solutions for Dynamics 365 Business Central and Dynamics GP focused on business performance and profitability, as well as new integrations and enhancements.

Topics include:

  • Cavallo's Profit Analytics beta has begun 
  • The debut of Profit Scan for Business Central
  • Plans to combine Order Management Dashboard + Workflow for Business Central
  • Recent enhancements and integrations to their Dynamics GP product offerings 

About Biz Apps Buzz

Biz Apps Buzz is the newest podcast series from MSDynamicsWorld.com, focusing on breaking news and announcements from Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Power Platform channel partners. The conversation is broadcast live on LinkedIn and YouTube, and the recording is then made available as a podcast. 

Dec 14, 2023

Julie Yack has years of experience with Microsoft certification exams, whether taking them herself, helping others prepare to pass them, and even helping Microsoft develop new ones. On this episode she talks with Biz Apps Classroom co-host Jason Gumpert about her certification experiences over the years, both good and bad, and what Microsoft has done to improve their approach in recent years by transitioning toward a role-based model and taking steps to make exams and exam prep somewhat more accessible.

 

Special offer: Listeners can support the podcast and get a discount on an annual plan for 365.training by visiting  https://365l.ink/MSDW.

 

Show Notes:

  • 3:25 - Certification development is not a black box - what goes into it
  • 6:30 - How Microsoft has shifted their approach based on community feedback
  • 7:45 - Power Platform roles that align with certifications
  • 9:00 - What will Microsoft do next to update its approach to certifications: roles, processes, and resources
  • 10:20 - Interactive experiences on Learn for Power Automate
  • 12:45 - Barriers to taking a certification exam, and some options from Microsoft to help
  • 14:00 - Why better study materials and more relevant exam questions lead to better results
  • 17:45 - Training and prep options, from free to paid
  • 19:15 - What should you do if you fail an exam?
  • 22:30 - More Microsoft practice assessments.
  • 23:30 - Getting support from the community

 

More about Practice Assessments: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/credentials/certifications/practice-assessments-for-microsoft-certifications

Nov 29, 2023

We are kicking off our new podcast series, the Biz Apps Classroom, and our hosts, Julie Yack of 365.training and Jason Gumpert of MSDynamicsWorld.com, discuss how this project arose and where it will be going in future episodes. They chat about some of the training and learning themes influencing the Power Platform and Dynamics 365 landscape today and trade notes on recent conference experiences and Microsoft product announcements. Julie also shares some observations from her most recent classroom training work.

Stay tuned for upcoming episodes of the Biz Apps Classroom, where we will examine topics like the influence of AI, Microsoft certifications, training resources, classroom and teaching styles, the evolution of the Microsoft business applications products, and more.

Special offer: Listeners can support the podcast and get a discount on an annual plan for 365.training by visiting https://365l.ink/MSDW.

Show Notes:

  • 1:00 – How to make sense about training in the Microsoft Biz Apps ecosystem today
  • 3:30 – Julie’s history with developing training content in the Dynamics space
  • 4:15 – How the hosts will develop new episode ideas and how listeners can get involved
  • 7:00 – Why some training materials have remained valid for several years while other topics change frequently
  • 8:00 – Addressing different types of learners, learning needs, and learning resources
  • 9:30 – Why certifications still matter
  • 11:00 – Why in-person training remains important in some scenarios
  • 13:30 – Training digital immigrants versus digital natives
  • 16:00 – How will AI impact training?
  • 19:30 – Julie’s experience leading in-person labs at Ignite 2023
  • 22:00 – Can Power Platform remain a platform both for citizen developers and pro devs?
  • 23:15 – More Ignite 2023 in-person experiences

Contact our hosts:

Nov 17, 2023

The analysts at Everest Group have published their latest ratings of systems integrators in the Microsoft Dynamics 365 ecosystem, and changes in the space reflect both product trends and attitudes toward enterprise software investment.

 

Our guest, Everest Group practice director Abhishek Mundra, discusses the factors that his time uses to assess service providers in terms of partnership with Microsoft, types of engagements, project outcomes, attitudes toward value realization, and more. And he explains why some firms have risen to become major contenders based on factors like geography or industry.

 

Learn more about the Everest Group report here.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:45 - Goals of Everest Group's assessment and the factors that impact it.
  • 4:45 - What has changed since their last assessment, both in terms of Microsoft's portfolio and the provider results
  • 10:30 - Why more global enterprises are deploying Dynamics-based solutions
  •  13:45 - Emerging types of engagements
  • 15:15 - What do customers say that service providers need to improve on?
  • 18:15 - How to realize value from very expensive enterprise software engagements and how providers manage
  • 19:30 - New entrants to the Dynamics 365 service provider market (and some removed from the report)
  • 23:00 - The range of Sis - how are midmarket firms competing alongside larger ones?
  • 24:30 -  How SIs manage their relationships with Microsoft
  • 29:30 - Why customers engage with multiple Microsoft partners
  • 32:45 - More plans in Everest Group's report calendar
Oct 31, 2023

This episode is sponsored by enVista.

 

The speed with which Microsoft has introduced various Copilot capabilities has challenged even the most dedicated channel professionals to keep up. Updates across Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Power Platform, and beyond have signaled a new era at Microsoft, with the company's product teams all putting AI-based capabilities at the forefront of their planning and messaging.

 

To get more perspective on how Microsoft's Copilot brand and tools are evolving, we are joined by Nathan Bench and Hillary Schwartzbach of enVista. They have been paying attention to Microsoft's updates, both the new Copilot announcements and the adjustments and rebranding that are still going on. They offer perspective on the AI capabilities that Microsoft customers have responded most favorably to already in work scenarios like code development, meeting management, and sales. We also discuss the close relationship between deploying AI workloads and having a strong base of IT fundamentals in an organization like data management and security policies. And they share some perspective on how champions can bring Microsoft Copilot tools back to their teams and win over skeptical or less educated colleagues to begin putting some of these capabilities to work.

 

Show Notes:

  • 2:00 - Which copilots customers have shown an early interest in, and why they need guidance in many areas
  • 5:30 - How Sales Copilot has influenced the perception of newer Dynamics 365 Copilot tools
  • 7:15 - How data management and data hygiene are so critical for getting value from AI
  • 11:30 - The challenge of correctly assigned security and access
  • 14:30 - Why access to documents and enterprise content flowing through enterprise systems will be important to Copilot scenarios
  • 17:00 - Recommendations on how champions in an organization should be bringing AI discussions back to their teams today
  • 23:00 - Why understanding user roles or personas will be critical for rolling out the right copilot scenarios in any organization
  • 25:30 - The role that Dynamics ISVs will have in the Copilot story
  • 30:00 - How enVista is starting to prepare their clients
  • 33:15 - Why interest is so high inside organizations already

 

enVista is a Microsoft Solution Partner with designations in Business Applications, Data & AI (Azure), Digital App & Innovation, and Modern Work. With two decades of experience in Microsoft consulting, implementations, development, technical support and operations for manufacturers, distributors and retailers, Microsoft business users benefit from having a single partner that can address all needs across the Microsoft platform.

 

Check out enVista’s D365 Copilot 1-Day Readiness Workshop:

https://appsource.microsoft.com/en-us/marketplace/consulting-services/envistacorp-2249752.d365_copilot_1day_workshop

Oct 19, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Wisefish.

 

Seafood companies face a unique mix of operational and production challenges related to sustainability, traceability, supply chain management, and cloud adoption. Our guests on this episode, Sigrun Dora and Ari Hróbjartsson of Wisefish, tell us about the ways that their company's seafood industry solutions, built on Dynamics 365 Business Central, address the needs of these companies.

 

Our guests discuss the history of Wisefish in the seafood market, the importance of sustainability and traceability in the industry today, the company's work in the Microsoft Business Applications channel, and how the company is positioning itself for the future through its partner program, roadmap, and go-to-market plans.

 

For the first time ever, Wisefish will be a silver sponsor at Directions EMEA from November 1-3, 2023.  Please visit their booth #S8 and discover how their solutions can help build a sustainable future in Seafood, and help Business Central partners gain business in the fishing industry. 

 

They will also have a speaking session entitled “Follow That Fish: Traceability through the Wisefish Value Chain”, on November 1st at 16:16  in the Amphitheatre.  

 

Please contact them at partner@Wisefish.com for more information   

Oct 18, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Vena.

 

Organizations are rethinking the finance function and its potential to improve business-wide collaboration, decision making, and planning. In the Microsoft ecosystem, standard tools like Dynamics 365 Finance, Power BI, and Excel play a key role for financial professionals, but the office of finance often needs more specialized capabilities. Our guest, Rishi Grover of Vena Solutions, joins us to explain how the company is partnering with Microsoft to bring new offerings to market focused on the future of finance. He shares his perspective on advances across Microsoft's business solutions lineup and explains how Vena has partnered with Microsoft to offer Dynamics 365 customers new finance capabilities. He shares Vena's product roadmap, how the company is working with Microsoft Dynamics partners, and shares perspective on the implications of Microsoft's AI roadmap on the finance function.

 

To learn more about Vena’s Complete Planning Platform natively integrated with Microsoft 365, visit https://www.venasolutions.com/platform/microsoft 

If you’d like to speak with a Vena expert or schedule a demo, contact us at: www.venasolutions.com/requestdemo 

Oct 9, 2023

With the second annual Microsoft Power Platform Conference (MPPC 2023) now over, Microsoft MVPs Steve Mordue and Asif Rehmani joined us to review their experiences and observations at the event. Microsoft had positive numbers to share on growth in both customers and community, but it was the company's messaging on Copilot overpowered other announcements at the event. Nevertheless, attendees and community presenters were at the show to talk about a whole lot more than the latest AI hype. Steve and Asif tell us about some of the sessions and themes they took note of in areas including governance, security, DevOps, data management, updates to Fabric, and more. And they share their views on the balance Microsoft is trying to strike between splashy AI headlines and less exciting foundational improvements across the platform.

 

More from Asif Rehmani:

 

More from Steve Mordue:

Oct 3, 2023

This episode is sponsored by KwikTag by Paymerang.

KwikTag recently joined the Paymerang family, bringing together the firms' AP and payment automation services. Their combined solutions streamline invoice and payment automation to extract and match data, eliminating manual processes to reduce the risk of fraud.

On this MSDW Podcast episode, Sierre Lindgren and Tiffany Allen of Paymerang join us to discuss how Dynamics GP and D365 Business Central customers use finance technology to fight fraud in AP automation. 66% of businesses have dealt with some sort of AP fraud event, they report, whether that be email, check, or wire fraud. Listen to this episode to understand what security measures you can take to fight AP fraud, from identifying top threats to adding layers of protection.

Show Notes:

  • 1:15 - What the acquisition of KwikTag by Paymerang means for customers
  • 2:45 - Ways to safeguard sensitive financial information for Dynamics ERP customers
  • 5:15 - Biggest consequences of ransomware attacks today
  • 6:30 - The differences between business email compromise and vendor impersonations
  • 9:30 - Departments that are most impacted by business email compromise attacks
  • 11:30 - Other key threats related to AP fraud
  • 12:45 - Layers of fraud protection that Paymerang supports
  • 14:45 - Biggest trends over next two years in security

 

Visit paymerang.com for more details, and check out notes from this session at: https://www.paymerang.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/09/MSDW-Fraud-Podcast.pdf

Sep 27, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Experlogix.

 

Configure Price Quote (CPQ) solutions are all about overcoming the challenges of a complex sales scenario. And when those sales relate to physical products, the ability to bring accurate engineering details to the customer without bothering the engineering team can be a benefit for all involved.

 

But there are other benefits to be gained from incorporating visualization technology into CPQ scenarios, and to help us identify them we welcome Jim Meyer, a product manager at Experlogix to learn about how they have approached this area of CPQ, specific ways that businesses get value from it, and why sales sees it helping their clients.

 

Jim tells us about what it takes to be a good candidate for the Experlogix 3D visualization offering and shares more details on the technology partnership that made this offering possible.

 

Show Notes:

  • 2:00 - A new partnership to deliver 2D and 3D visualization
  • 3:45 - Creative uses of product visualization in sales scenarios across industry
  • 5:00 - Why everyone wants engineers out of the sales process
  • 6:45 - How to CPQ plays a part in optimizing product strategy
  • 9:00 - B2B scenarios that benefit from visualization
  • 13:00 - What type of organization can use this technology as part of their CPQ solution in terms of industry and in terms of technology readiness?
  • 16:45 - How visualization for CPQ aligns with Dynamics applications
  • 19:00 - Recommendations for how to evaluate CPQ

 

From Experlogix:

Interested in learning more about 3D Visualization and how businesses can leverage it with CPQ software to enhance customer experience? Check out our product webpage to learn more.

 

For more information or to see a demo, contact the Experlogix team!

Sep 14, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Data Courage.

 

When our guests, Tristan Threlkeld and Madison Hillend, talk about AI-enabled apps for Dynamics 365 Business Central, they aren't surprised to hear different responses from Microsoft customers and partners.

 

The Data Courage team will be at Summit North America 2023 in October to talk more about their two key solutions for Business Central, AI Item Intelligence and AI Customer Intelligence. They tell us about what attendees can expect from the team, and they update us on the work that has gone into building new solutions atop standard Business Central data models and business logic

 

More from Data Courage:

We are excited to see everyone at Summit this year! Stop by Data Courage booth 2017 at Summit and learn how you can get Item Insights or Customer Intelligence with complimentary Power BI Dashboards free for 30 days. We would love to chat about all things AI too. Hope to see you there!

Sep 12, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Argano.

 

The team at Microsoft partner Argano attended the first Microsoft Power Platform Conference in 2022 and they are returning for the 2023 event in Las Vegas starting on October 3. In this event preview episode of the podcast,  Jon Rastia, senior director of innovation and technology at Argano joins us to discuss the team's experiences last year, the Power Platform roadmap, the evolution of the community, and more. He also shares a preview of a customer case study Argano will be presenting at MPPC 2023.

 

Learn more about Argano's presence at MPPC 2023 here.

Sep 6, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Resco.net.

 

Power Platform has influenced how Microsoft customers and partners evaluate how to extend or customize business systems, including for mobile scenarios.

 

Microsoft has adjusted its marketing around Power Platform over the years, with early emphasis on the citizen developers and no-code customization and now promoting its strengths as a development platform for everyone from business users to pro developers.

 

To help us get another perspective on the state of mobile business solutions in the Dynamics and Power Platform space, we are talking to Ben Mitchell of Resco, he leads partnerships and success in North America for the company. He updates us on how Resco sees their mobile solution development expertise aligning with the strengths and limitations of today's core Microsoft technologies. Customers still need to deploy advanced mobile capabilities that core Power Platform tools can't address, including under demanding conditions. He explains what some of those requirements are and why Resco believes they and their partners are well positioned to meet those needs while staying aligned with Microsoft's  vision.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - Ben Mitchell's background in mobile solutions and enterprise software
  • 3:30 - How Microsoft partners view the mobile application opportunities of the future and Resco's role
  • 7:45 - How partners are weighing the options for clients of pre-built mobile apps vs Power Platform custom apps
  • 12:30 - Do partners need more discipline on applying Power Platform to solve business needs?
  • 17:00 - Vertical solution needs that Ben is seeing in the market today
  • 20:00 - How Resco is advising Microsoft partners on development of industry-specific solutions
  • 23:00 -  Resco's plans for adding more advanced mobile capabilities - AI, reporting, and more

 

To discover more about Resco for Power Platform, visit:  https://www.resco.net/learning/power-platform/

 

Want to see it in action? Email benjamin.mitchell@resco.net 

 

Visit the Resco.net booth #125 @ Microsoft Power Platform Conference in Vegas, October 3-5. 

Aug 28, 2023

The Microsoft Power Platform Conference returns for its second edition in October, and Microsoft's Heather Cook, who is also an executive producer of the event, joins us to talk about the conference and trends in the community. Heather joined Microsoft's Business Applications team in June of 2020 after working in the Microsoft Teams group, and she tells us about her efforts over that time, from supporting grassroots local groups to large centralized events like MPPC 2023.

 

MPPC will offer sessions for a range of interest, from technical to professional development to community. Heather tells us how MPPC fits into Microsoft's broader approach to supporting the Power Platform community, how newcomers are getting involved, and what else Microsoft will be doing in the coming months. 

 

Show Notes:

  • 5:00 - Evolution of the Power Platform community since Covid across products, events, and initiatives
  • 8:00 - Heather's event experience and how she applied it when joining the Business Apps group in June of 2020
  • 13:00 - Speaker highlights at MPPC 2023: Execs, product managers to community members
  • 15:00 - More event agenda details
  • 17:30 - How members of the community take the first steps toward adding their voices
  • 20:00 - Stories of Power Platform career changers and career opportunities
  • 23:00 - How newcomers get started today
  • 25:00 - Heather's broader community planning outlook for 2023 and beyond

 

Follow Mondays at Microsoft (https://www.linkedin.com/company/microsoft-community/) with Heather and Karuana Gatimu at 8am PT every other week, where they share product and community updates.

Aug 18, 2023

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central veterans Robb Delprado and Steve Chinsky of Accelerynt attended Cavallo's recent PANELS'23 event and joined us as the event was winding down to discuss their impressions. We discuss Cavallo's Business Central product roadmap, the role of ISVs more generally in today's BC ecosystem, today's balance between investing in custom development (including Power Platform) and add-on solutions, and what an ISV like Cavallo, with its existing GP customer base, can teach NAV and BC veterans about the future of Business Central projects for organizations with on-prem ERP today.

 

Show Notes:

  • 3:30 - Reaction to Cavallo's roadmap, focused on both Dynamics GP and D365 Business Central
  • 8:00 - The challenge of planning for a Business Central implementation project
  • 12:00 - The importance of exposing GP customers to a future with BC
  • 14:30 - Customization versus packaged solutions for Business Central
  • 22:30 - More about the BC 3 Amigos podcast
  • 23:45 - Other impressions of the PANELS'23 experience

 

See also:

 
Aug 2, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Mazars USA.

 

As Microsoft and other large technology firms accelerate their AI-related roadmaps, businesses have no choice but to reckon with how different technology will impact their employees, customers, and partners. Some AI tools will be relatively easy to deploy, like prebuilt capabilities coming to Microsoft Dynamics 365 apps via Copilot. Other uses of AI will require greater investment, carry different risk profiles, and raise new ethical, regulatory, and governance question. 

 

Ivan Cole, managing director at Mazars USA about AI adoption in the Microsoft space, joins us to these topics and expand on some of the points he and his colleague, Microsoft MVP Chris Segurado, raised in a recent webcast for the MSDW audience about adoption and momentum of AI in the Dynamics space.

 

As Ivan explains, all artificial intelligence isn’t created equal. With the popularity of generative AI, we are seeing a tendency for people to confuse it with other capabilities like machine learning (ML) and natural language processing (NLP). Ivan explains how he untangles some of these fundamentals and shares his outlook on why an AI framework helps guide businesses in their approach to the various technologies.

 

Show Notes:

  • 2:30 - What do people understand well about AI today and where do they need education?
  • 6:00 - How to harness an organization's enthusiasm to take advantage of AI capabililties in the Microsoft space
  • 12:30 - How AI's implementation could change specific roles in organizations
  • 16:00 - Looking for AI solutions that extend beyond what Microsoft offers out of the box
  • 18:30 - What it means to enable security and guardrails for AI adoption
  • 22:00 - Why organizations need to make rapid progress on their AI governance policies

 

More from Mazars:

With Mazars' SAFE AI FrameworkTM as your guide, you can confidently embrace your organization’s future with AI.

Journey with Mazars and discover AI's enormous potential, while ensuring its use aligns with best practices for security, adaptability, factual integrity and ethics.

Learn more about SAFE AI Framework

Jul 19, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Avanade.

 

Enterprise-scale call centers face the challenge of dispersed information across systems run by fragmented technology. As customers expect better digital-first support, customer service teams need to elevate their capabilities to deliver an expected level of performance across channels.

On this episode, our guests, Abi Sridhar and Barry Givens of Avanade and Shriram Viswanathan of Accenture, dive deeper into some of the points raised in Avanade's recent webcast examining key challenges faced by executives and technology teams, and customer service leaders in providing exceptional contact center service experience to end customers while optimizing operational costs for their organizations. They share recent real-world experiences, including examples of how customers are bringing together Dynamics 365, Power Platform, Azure services, and Nuance offerings to enhance customer experience.

Show Notes:

  • 3:00 -  How are business leaders evaluating call center technology investments today?
  • 6:45 - Approaching change management concerns that accompany digital transformation
  • 10:30 - Where are customer care organizations finding quick wins with technology investment?
  • 15:00 - How to approach end user security and privacy in today's projects across industries
  • 17:45 - Understanding the basics of Nuance Gatekeeper and its expansion out of highly regulated and secure industries
  • 20:30 - Typical risks that enterprises face during implementation projects today
  • 25:45 - Sharing a client story that required an industry-first approach
  • 28:00 - Perspective on Microsoft's customer care roadmap: composability, AI tools, and beyond

 

Find out more from Avanade about transforming service with Microsoft Digital Contact Center Platform: https://www.avanade.com/en-ca/blogs/avanade-insights/cx/transforming-contact-center-platform

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