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Now displaying: Page 1
Jan 26, 2023

This episode is sponsored by KwikTag by enChoice.

 

The world of work has changed in recent years, and today's AP departments find themselves working to meet both the performance demands of their businesses and the career interests of employees.


Our guests on this episode, Mary Miller and Sean Fitzgerald of KwikTag by enChoice, share their perspective on recent research on the impact of remote work and the implications on enterprise software investment. They share their own experiences working with companies to embrace the digital world and making sense of the marketplace and their employees' needs.

 

We also discuss why the profile of a company adopting AP automation is changing and the outcomes that finance departments are seeking from their software investments.

 

Show Notes

  • 2:00 - New findings on the sentiment toward remote work
  • 6:00 - The priority of AP before and after Covid and a real customer's experience ramping up quickly
  • 11:15 - Customer and employee expectations of an AP automation project today
  • 15:00 - Perception vs reality of what kinds of organization invests in AP automation
  • 19:15 - How a single dad managed AP during the pandemic while working from home and making time for his children
  • 24:30 - Implications of AP technology investment for companies moving ERP to the cloud
  • 30:00 - Why Business Central customers want solutions that allow them to be more proactive on budgeting, planning, analysis, and process improvement
  • 35:45 - Looking at the hiring and talent retention landscape

 

KwikTag by enChoice leads digital transformation as the one system for AI-powered invoice capture and workflow automation. With 20+ years of experience in the Dynamics community, KwikTag offers intelligent, cloud AP automation solutions for Dynamics GP and Business Central that provide a completely digital, touchless workflow and automatic transaction creation in your ERP. Visit kwiktag.com to learn how AP automation could benefit your business.

 

To learn more about the reasons companies are automating accounts payable, read this whitepaper: 5 Reasons Companies Are Automating AP. Watch this video to learn how a company using Dynamics GP transformed their AP process as a result of the pandemic and the work-from-anywhere era: Customer Spotlight: American Software.

Jan 9, 2023

This episode is sponsored by Formpipe.

Formpipe’s Business Solutions Consultants Soren Hjorth and Stefan Kristiansen join us to discuss commonly seen document management requirements in the Dynamics community. As more customers modernize from on-premises to cloud ERP solutions, their requirements and expectations for document automation often change, our guests say. Organizations today want greater speed, universal access and control, and better integrations, among other things. We also discuss what's new at Formpipe, including the next major version of Lasernet and some of the forward-looking plans of Dynamics customers looking to document management more holistically.

Show Notes

  • 2:00 - What are customers asking for frequently today (more performance, better flexibility and responsiveness to requirements)?
  • 9:00 -  The role of paper printing in today's business (especially in the US) and how businesses are moving away from paper
  • 10:30 - How to find speed gains in the document automation and printing process
  • 11:30 - Changes in customer requirements in recent years
  • 13:30 - Customer expectations today for a document management solution: better understanding of what solutions can provide
  • 16:00 - How to scope and prioritize document management needs to get the most out your investment
  • 18:30 - Learning about what an organization does well in their Dynamics system today
  • 22:00 - What's new with Formpipe Lasernet today -  app integration, scanning, adding applications
  • 25:15 - Working together with the Power Platform
  • 27:45 - What's new at Formpipe - planning for the new release, hosting options, integrating marketing goals

For more information on Lasernet for Dynamics and Formpipe, please visit: www.formpipe.com or please check out Formpipe’s content on MSDW.

Jan 2, 2023

Dynamics ERP veterans Tanya Henderson and Steve Endow join the podcast to discuss their new ISV venture focused on the Dynamics 365 Business Central market, Blue Dragonfly. They also talk about their overall career journeys from a focus mostly on Dynamics GP a few years ago to now working primarily with Business Central. They bring some unique observations to what's happening in the BC space, including their outlook on how AppSource is changing, the differences in how Microsoft seems to run its BC R&D organization compared to the old GP team, and how the global community interacts more or less 24x7 around the world. They also offer some interesting ideas for what it takes for other GP professionals to get up to speed on BC.

Links:

Show Notes

  • 1:45 - How Tanya and Steve each got their start with Business Central
  • 5:45 - The origins of their new ISV business based on Business Central: Blue Dragonfly
  • 9:30 - The decision to develop new ISV products for the BC space
  • 13:00 - Blue Dragonfly's first product, recurring billing
  • 16:00 - Developing product ideas and plans
  • 17:30 - The per-tenant extension opportunity in BC
  • 22:00 - The decision to commit to BC: architecture, licensing, marketplace, administration, and more
  • 25:15 - AppSource experiences as a BC ISV - why current standards can cause concerns for some apps
  • 29:15 - Best practices for an ISV in an app-centric Business Centric world
  • 33:00 - Using Azure services for optimal cloud-based solutions
  • 36:00 - What to look ahead to in 2023 and the community's influence
  • 42:00 - Microsoft's adoption of GitHub and the broader agile transformation of BC
  • 44:45 -  Preparing to work with partners and customers in 2023 on products and services
  • 50:45 - Steve's multi-year effort to gain expertise in BC
  • 52:15 - 2023 conferences where you can hear from Tanya and Steve
Dec 16, 2022

This episode is sponsored by NMB Solutions.

 

Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance and Supply Chain Management customers in Europe face unique challenges related to transportation and shipping. Our guest, Nathaniël Nguyen, Director of Sales at NMB Solutions, tells us about some of the needs that customers and partners in Europe are facing, including the complexity of parcel shipping today.

 

Nathaniël explains why NMB has opened its European office, how parcel shipping has evolved, the impact of these changes on shippers and logistics providers, and why the company has partnered with nShift on a new Dynamics 365 F&SCM connector.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:00 - NMB's approach to connecting Dynamics 365 F&SCM with best of breed supply chain solutions
  • 2:15 - Opening an office in Amsterdam
  • 3:00 - Shipping and transportation challenges specific to European D365 customers
  • 4:00 - The evolution of parcel shipping in the last few years
  • 6:30 - What it means to treat parcel shipping as a strategic initiative
  • 8:15 - What do customers expect for shipping of their goods, and how do businesses find a competitive advantage?
  • 9:30 - How logistics service providers are impacted by a changing shipping market
  • 11:30 - The evolution of the shipping technology landscape
  • 14:45 - NMB's partnership with nShift and details about their integration for D365 customers
  • 17:15 - Methods that D365 customers can use to approach supply chain pain points

For more information on NMB Solutions’ developments and opportunities in the parcel shipping industry and their strategic alliance with Nshift, visit www.nmbsolutions.ca.

Nov 29, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Formpipe.

 

Every Dynamics 365 ERP implementation must deal with business documents, whether printed or digital. An cloud ERP migration is a great opportunity to modernize document management, says our guest, Jeff Goffinet, North America Partner Sales Director at Formpipe. He shares stories of how companies in various industries have approached their digital transformations with document management in mind and the ways industry-specific needs can drive priorities.

 

Jeff offers guidance from recent Dynamics implementations on how to factor document management into an ERP modernization project, explains how Formpipe's Lasernet and Autoform DM solutions work with Dynamics, and provides an update on the company's 2023 outlook.

 

Show Notes

  • 2:00 - The kinds of projects Jeff is seeing in the Dynamics ERP space today
  • 6:30 - The challenges of including advanced capabilities in an ERP implementation
  • 9:00 - Discussing industry-specific needs for document management, from labels and invoices to other customer facing documents
  • 14:30 - Dealing with unique integrations and other custom work
  • 16:45 - How Dynamics users interface with a document platform
  • 19:00 - How much business is still done on paper and Jeff's perspective on the shift to digital
  • 22:45 - How customers understand their document management needs and map them to solutions like Formpipe's
  • 29:00 - Product outlook for 2023

 

For more information on Formpipe and its document management solutions for Dynamics, please visit: www.formpipe.com or please check out Formpipe content on MSDW.

Nov 3, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Enavate.

Microsoft Dynamics GP customers have a lot of consider as they plan for 2023. The product's outlook remains unchanged, despite some confusion caused by Microsoft in recent weeks. But with the move to Microsoft's modern lifecycle and the ongoing push for greater Business Central adoption, GP customers need to understand what their upgrade path looks like and how they can best navigate the decisions around it from a range of perspectives.

Our guests on this episode, Tim McHale and Pamala Turner of Enavate's GP services team, tell us about what they are working on with GP customers these days. As a team of over a dozen product experts, they are busier than ever supporting the needs of GP customers. Upgrades remain in high demand and other topics, like future support for ISV solutions and migrating to cloud infrastructure continue to challenge customers.

Show Notes:

  • 1:00 - About Enavate's GP pod
  • 6:00 - What are GP customers asking for today?
  • 7:30 - How to navigate a GP upgrade to get onto the Modern Lifecycle
  • 11:30 - Some broader Microsoft technology updates that impact GP customers
  • 13:15 - Why deprecation of Basic Authentication is so important
  • 16:30 - ISV role in upgrading their GP-related code
  • 18:00 - The real status of the GP roadmap
  • 23:30 - What staying current with GP means for planning for future technology options in ERP and beyond
  • 25:00 - Estimating costs and factors that influence it
  • 28:30 - Typical cloud migration options
  • 31:00 - Customer feedback to Enavate's GP team

More resources from Enavate:

Oct 27, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Nolan Business Solutions.

Nolan Business Solutions recently launched their Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central solution for cash management. We are joined by Carole D'Arcy and Derek Beaupre of Nolan to get their perspective on bringing a successful solution from the Dynamics GP world to Business Central. They tell us why ISVs like Nolan who are bringing mature solutions to BC is so crucial for partners looking to sell both new BC deployments and to upgrade legacy Dynamics ERP customers. We also dive into the topic of how the commerce channels is driving the demand for solutions that can handle complex cash reconciliation challenges. Derek and Carole explain how to evaluate BC's standard cash management capabilities, share their outlook on the BC roadmap, and provide an update on Nolan's product roadmap.

Show Notes:

  • 2:30 - Nolan's evolution as a solution provider in the ERP channel
  • 4:30 - The challenge of standardizing institutional wisdom and informal processes as part of an ERP deployment
  • 6:00 - What the growth in multi-channel business means for doing cash reconciliation
  • 8:30 - Microsoft's progress with cash management in Business Central out of the box
  • 10:30 - Has Microsoft made it easier for customers to adopt ISV solutions as part of Business Central deployments?
  • 11:30 - Sharing Nolan's experience in adding a BC product after many years supporting GP customers
  • 14:30 - What today's Business Central customer engagement looks like and how it differs from ERP projects of the past
  • 16:30 - What partners expect from a solution vendor when it comes to adding cash management on a BC project
  • 19:30 - Trends driving clients' demands for the future
  • 24:45 - The importance of building community connections

More information from Nolan Business Solutions:

Oct 21, 2022

We talked to Peter Wolf of Azamba and AJ Ansari of DSWi in May just after Microsoft announced the Microsoft Cloud Partner Program (MCPP) and they had a range concerns about how the early details appeared to impact SMB Business Applications partners. In short, the scoring at the time seemed geared toward enterprise-level partners and ran the risk of shutting a whole segment of partners out of the benefits they enjoy today by achieving Gold and Silver status.

Today, the story is quite a bit different. MCPP has officially launched, but it has evolved for the better, according to AJ and Peter. They've come back to the MSDW Podcast to discuss the SMB-friendly updates, to compare notes on their company's scores in the new model, and to do their best to break down some of the scoring criteria as Microsoft has explained it.

While Peter and AJ both say the program is still far from perfect, they give Microsoft credit for the improvements thus far.

Show Notes:

AJ's Links:

Peter's Links:

Oct 5, 2022

This episode is sponsored by AutoPylot Technologies.

It’s a universal complaint: the sales reps don’t use the CRM. It’s too much effort and takes too much time. As a result, the data in a system like Dynamics 365 Sales is incomplete. CRM may fail to meet expectations, yet the CRM remains the data touchpoint to a range of downstream business processes and decisions.

In this episode, we talk with Steve Shaw of AutoPylot Technologies Corp. about how and why they have entered the Microsoft Dynamics space with a new mobile app for that integrates D365 with added automation and other smart features to encourage sales reps to capture key data. Steve explains why company decided to enter this competitive market and the early results of upcoming research highlighting the impact automation can have on CRM adoption. We also discuss the complementary nature of AutoPylot and Viva Sales, and how conversational AI always starts with conversations. 

Show Notes:

  • 1:15 - AutoPylot's history and the decision to enter the Microsoft space
  • 2:45 - Why sales reps embrace automation, including new research findings
  • 4:45 - Must-have features of sales automation
  • 6:30 - The importance of tracking data to manage the sales process
  • 8:00 - What it takes to deploy an automation solution for sellers on top of CRM
  • 9:15 - How do companies tend to get started with AutoPylot? 
  • 10:30 - Engaging with the Microsoft channel
  • 11:30 - Viva Sales and how AutoPylot will complement it and contributer to conversation intelligence
  • 14:45 - Experiences as part of Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub
  • 16:00 - Why sales automation remains relevant

To learn how AutoPylot can solve for your biggest CRM frustration, visit www.autopylot.com. And they will be at booth 640 at Community Summit North America 2022.

Sep 29, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Enavate.

Cloud ERP and CRM migrations remain a significant but challenging opportunity for Microsoft partners. From Dynamics GP and NAV to AX and CRM, Dynamics customers are planning for the future of their enterprise solutions, but the path forward is not always clear, both in terms of understanding the technical challenges and planning for the optimal future state.

Jennifer Ranz and Chad Sogge of Enavate join us on this episode to provide updates on their team's various upgrade and migration tools and programs. A significant portion of Enavate's effort is focused on working with other partners, they explain, because the demand for cloud migration projects remains high even as partner organizations remain stretched.  We discuss the launch of the Dynamics 365 Business Central assessment tool developed by Enavate and its role in the channel. Chad also provides an update on enterprise migrations to F&O and CE.

And we discuss  what the upgrade and migration landscape looks like overall today, both for partners and for customers. Many of the challenges, risks, and opportunities of the past look very different today, they say, and we discuss how the technology and methodologies have improved.

Show Notes:

  • 2:00 - What's new in upgrade services and tools at Enavate
  • 3:30 - The launch of the Dynamics GP to D365 upgrade & migration assessment tool
  • 6:45 - How partners should think about using the GP to Dynamics 365 assessment tool
  • 8:45 - What partners should do if they are not ready to support a Dynamics 365 migration
  • 11:30 - How GP customers can get access to the assessment tool (and share the findings with their partner)
  • 15:45 - Observations based on aggregated, non-identifiable usage metadata from the assessment tool
  • 20:15 - What's new in standard migration assessments to Dynamics 365 F&O and CE and how partners work together on white labeled services
  • 23:45 - Making the channel economic case on increasing the volume of enterprise migrations to the cloud
  • 26:45 - What NAV customers need in an assessment tool for moving to Business Central

More from Enavate:

Sep 28, 2022

The first Microsoft Power Platform Conference (MCCP) 2022 has now concluded, and we catch up with Microsoft MVP Asif Rehmani to discuss what we learned at the event. We review some of the things we learned about Power Platform's position within the larger Microsoft Cloud, how SharePoint will co-exist with it, the various user roles related to Power Platform adoption, and our perception of the Microsoft product team's outlook. We also look ahead to how Power Platform events supported by Microsoft could change in the next year.

 

Asif has also written a LinkedIn post sharing his event experiences.

 

Related MSDW articles:

Sep 13, 2022

Editor's Note: This episode is sponsored by Dooap.

Machine learning technology has become more common and more accessible in AP automation solutions in recent years. Our guest, Kristin Ewart of Dooap, tells us how her clients are deploying ML as part of their AP and invoice management solutions today and how the experience has transitioned from one of training and modelling to one of passive learning and rapid deployment.

 

But all ML capabilities are not created equal, and Kristin offers guidance on what to expect in areas like predictive coding, three way matching, and workflow automation alongside a Dynamics 365 solution. She also shares her observations on what the addition of ML capabilities has done to improve the experiences of workers involved in AP approvals and those responsible for managing those processes.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - How much and how often is ML used today in AP scenarios?
  • 4:00 - ML capabilities that are adding value in AP automation solutions
  • 7:30 - The relationship between automation and ML training
  • 8:45 - Capturing data based on invoice history with OCR and other ML tools
  • 10:00 - Benefits realized from transitioning from rules-based solutions to ML
  • 14:30 - How ML predictive models work in Dooap today and what passive learning really means
  • 18:00 - What's next for ML in automation scenarios

Book a demo with Dooap at www.dooap.com/book-a-demo

Sep 8, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Mavim.

An organization can invest in extensive business process modeling, but without an effective way for workers to access that information, the effort may not lead to any noticeable improvements.

Our guest on this episode, Shrikanth Balla, product lead for Mavim Portal, focuses his efforts on the challenge of helping an organization's people access process models and consume the guidance to incorporate it into their work. Shrikanth explains more about where the concepts of business process modelling and digital twins align, as well as one of the key touchpoints for process consumption, the enterprise systems like Dynamics ERP and CRM, and Power Platform solutions.

Show Notes:

  • 2:00 - What does it mean for a portal to serve as a consumption platform?
  • 5:00 - What are digital twins about in the context of business process?
  • 7:00 - The consumption perspective of a digital twin and its evolution over time
  • 9:45 - The challenge of harmonizing processes
  • 14:00 - Where a portal fits in with an enterprise system like Dynamics or Power Platform
  • 20:30 - Portals in the context of cloud migration efforts by Microsoft customers
  • 23:00 - Why Power Platform is so exciting to Mavim

More from Mavim:

Aug 24, 2022

The delivery of sales-related technology solutions never stops evolving, and our guest, Chuck Ingram of  CongruentX, believes advances in conversation intelligence are poised to become a critical piece of the puzzle for sellers. One of the things that makes conversation intelligence so interesting, Chuck explains, is how quickly the segment has emerged and impacted organizations, with specialist vendors taking market share while the CRM behemoths like Microsoft also step up their offerings.

Chuck explains why his team sees promise across the conversation intelligence landscape, including with Viva Sales, Gong, and in Microsoft's vision around applying Nuance's tools in contact centers and beyond. Momentum in this area has also influenced how CongruentX delivers its services, including an evolving subscription model and new thinking on relationship management thanks to the addition of CRM thought leader JC Quintana.

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - What the CongruentX team is working with clients on today, including refining their subscription model
  • 3:45 - The evolution of service delivery in the Microsoft channel with better monitoring of key metrics and outcomes
  • 6:45 - What excites Chuck about conversation intelligence tech in sales scenarios, both from Microsoft and other vendors
  • 10:00 - How buyers should evaluate their technology options for conversation intelligence
  • 13:00 - The importance of bringing JC Quintana to the CongruentX team and the influence of his expertise in building better relationships
  • 15:45 - How will Viva Sales fit into the conversation intelligence landscape
  • 18:30 - Microsoft's efforts to integrate Nuance into CRM scenarios
  • 21:00 - CongruentX's framework on getting started with conversation intelligence

More from CongruentX:

What DialoguePrime for Viva Sales Does:

  • Collect unstructured data such as emails and conversations via Microsoft Viva Sales.
  • Identify relationship elements of your conversations that need attention, no matter the channel you use to interact with them. Conversational analysis identifies keywords that represent potential relationship deterioration that often leads to customer churn.
  • Evaluate the sentiment of customer conversations and suggest next action to manage customer expectations and build stronger relationships.
Aug 17, 2022

Editor's Note: This episode is sponsored by TIE Kinetix.

 

No two companies follow the same path to modernizing their supply chain, but successful supply chain transformation projects share some important characteristics, says our guest Dave Mazur of TIE Kinetix.

 

The decision to move ERP to the cloud is one example of a critical moment for many organizations, representing an opportunity to embrace broader changes in both tools and processes. That includes digitizing documents, improving inter-company transactions, and developing ways to adapt to future changes in the supply chain.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - A broad view of what it means to digitize a supply chain
  • 4:30 - How much paper and manual work still exists in companies today?
  • 6:30 - What are typical ways for companies to become inefficient?
  • 9:00 - Who is leading a supply chain transformation initiative?
  • 13:00 - Supply chain technology improvements and the connection to process modernization
  • 15:00 - The types of team members needed on a transformation project
  • 16:30 - The impact of change on trading partners
  • 18:30 - More recommendations on successful initiatives
  • 22:00 - How to keep the momentum for embracing modern tools over the long term

 

A message from TIE Kinetix:

For more information on how TIE Kinetix helps Microsoft Dynamics customers digitize their supply chains, please visit TIEKinetix.com or check out their Starter's Guide to Digital Supply Chain Transformation on MSDW.

Aug 5, 2022

Is your company preparing to implement permissions in Business Central but doesn’t quite know where to start? Or have you already implemented permissions, but they aren’t quite working as planned? In this discussion with Cari Corozza and Cynthia Priebe of New View Strategies, we discuss a start to finish approach to implementing permissions in Business Central. Cynthia and Cari share real-life stories on why implementing permissions should be more than IT project.

Learn more:

Aug 3, 2022

Editor's Note: This episode is sponsored by Netstock.

 

Netstock CTO Barry Kukkuk and his co-founders wanted to bring advanced inventory management capabilities enjoyed by enterprises to the SMB market. It was a business opportunity for sure, but democratizing these tools by using new pricing enabled by cloud computing and SaaS business models was also part of the team's ethos, he explains. After all, who wants a business landscape controlled solely by the Amazons and Walmarts of the world?

 

On this episode we discuss the modern capabilities in supply chain software, starting with big data and its accessibility for SMBs. Barry also discusses the lessons that Netstock customers have learned since 2020 about managing changing trends in demand forecasting, stock models, and inventory management. The idea of "future-proofing" a supply chain can take a lot of forms today, with opportunities ranging from supplier performance management to near-shoring to tools that build better vendor and client relationships.

 

From Netstock: Unlock the data in your ERP and drive smarter supply chain decisions. Learn more.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:15 - The founding of Netstock
  • 4:15 - Bringing more advanced computing tools to the SMB space
  • 6:00 - The impact of the pandemic on inventory management
  • 8:30 - Planning mistakes organizations made in the start of the pandemic
  • 10:00 - What supply chain professionals know about today's supply and demand planning tools
  • 13:30 - What signs are businesses seeing change in their demand forecast today?
  • 17:00 - How Netstock's clients are adapting to optimize supply chains today?
  • 19:45 - Planning for new capabilities based on customer needs, trends
  • 21:30 - How supplier performance influences planning
  • 25:00 - How supply and demand planning influences customers
Jul 18, 2022

With Microsoft’s annual global partner event Inspire 2022 set to begin this week, we look back at some of our relevant reporting and features. Recent coverage discussed by the MSDW and MSCN editorial team on this episode includes:

Jul 11, 2022

The Microsoft Business Applications product line's new look is starting to come into focus under the leadership of CVP Charles Lamanna. In a recent conversation with Microsoft MVP Steve Mordue, Lamanna discussed some of his team's recent work, its successes, and future challenges. Lamanna's upward rise at Microsoft started in the Power Platform team, but he now represents the Dynamics 365 lineup, too.

 

Mordue discusses his impressions after talking with Lamanna this time (it was the fourth interview they've done over the years) and how both Microsoft's product and channel plans have impacted the community, including Mordue's own business decisions related to RapidStart CRM and Forceworks.

 

Show Notes:

  • 6:30 - Could Power Platform really help upsell Dynamics 365 apps?
  • 12:30 - Viva Sales and the Biz Apps R&D team's involvement
  • 15:30 - Why enthusiasm from Charles Lamanna is likely to be followed by real progress
  • 20:00 - Some Nuance R&D is now under the Biz Apps umbrella
  • 22:45 - Microsoft's much improved acquisition strategy for business apps
  • 25:30 - Reviewing the D365 product management leaders
  • 29:00 - Are Steve's new clients starting with an interest in an app or in the platform?
  • 31:30 - Adapting services offerings for low code development
  • 38:15 - Changing customer perceptions on the idea of continuous development vs discrete start and end dates
  • 40:00 - Making sense of the channel outlook from Partner Economics as it relates to Power Platform opportunities
  • 44:00 - Differences in the new generation of buyers
  • 45:30 - Why Steve's firm transitioned to offering a free app on Power Platform with a subscription services model
  • 49:45 - How will partners prove their worth with a new generation of customers?
  • 52:00 - Thinking about the future of the partner business model
Jun 29, 2022

Microsoft partner executives who have been focused on their immediate challenges in recent years would be well served to use the start of Microsoft's FY23 to turn their attention to longer term strategies for maintaining profitability in an economic landscape full of risks.

 

Our guests, George Brown and Dana Willmer of Partner Economics, have been sharing their latest findings on the micro- and macroeconomic conditions in the Microsoft channel, and for Dynamics-focused services firms, the implications will be huge over the next few years. They recently wrote an article about their new thinking and join us to discuss these topics in more detail.

 

The factors that drive profitability are shifting rapidly, Brown and Willmer tell us, and partners will need to make difficult choices to adapt. Some of the issues that they discuss include the ongoing resource shortage, the impact of marketplaces on software sales, dropping utilization rates, and valuations.

 

Partners are not doomed, they say, but in a few years many of the most popular business models in the channel may look nothing like today's typical Dynamics VAR.

 

Show Notes:

  • 4:00 - Understanding trends in the fundamentals of Microsoft partners' financial performance
  • 6:00 - 3 paths to improved profitability today - monetization of IP, broad cloud focus, services execution
  • 9:00 - How partner executives react to these challenges
  • 12:15 - The resource and staffing challenges facing partners
  • 18:30 - Why utilization has dropped for partners and what it means for profitability
  • 21:15 - Why rates need to go up now and on a regular basis
  • 22:30 - Why marketplaces like Microsoft AppSource matter to the partner business model
  • 27:30 - How does Microsoft's success relate to the partner channel's struggles?
  • 30:30 - Partner responses and how some are adapting their businesses today
  • 34:30 - Implications of market forces on valuations and M&A deal-making
Jun 23, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Mavim.

As use of Microsoft Power Platform has grown, so  has its influence in customers' business process management initiatives. But Power Platform is almost never the entire story when it comes to governance of processes, IP, and broader challenges like enterprise architecture.

Our guest on this episode, Lennard van Leuen of Mavim, discusses how dedicated BPM tools like Mavim can work alongside tools like Power Apps and Power Automate to provide the most comprehensive management and governance of IP and business processes at the enterprise or department level. We discuss different kinds of automation, what the term "hyper-automation" means to Mavim, and what Microsoft's product roadmap means for the future of business process management initiatives.

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - Breaking down the different types of automation commonly seen in the Microsoft Dynamics & Power Platform ecosystem
  • 3:30 - How do Power Platform tools fit with Mavim's tools and customer needs?
  • 4:00 - How Mavim defines hyper-automation and some context
  • 5:30 - Handling more complex automation and BPM scenarios
  • 7:00 - Takeaways from the Build conference related to Power Platform
  • 8:00 - The outlook on tools like form recognition in the context of BPM
  • 9:00 - Business process management as a broader opportunity for organizations
  • 11:30 - How to incorporate governance into BPM and automation initiatives
  • 14:00 - How organizations are augmenting existing enterprise systems with Power Platform capabilities
  • 19:00 - How newer tech like RPA can complete more process automation scenarios

Resources:

Jun 21, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Formpipe.

 

Dynamics 365 Business Central users face a variety of document automation challenges, especially as their organizations grow and interface with more third parties. The question inevitably arises: how far can the customer push standard Business Central capabilities before they need to look for a specialized solution? The team from Formpipe, makers of Lasernet, have been working with BC and NAV customers for years and join us on this episode to provide an update on their experiences working with BC customers and deploying Lasernet to meet broader and more complex document and output automation needs related to international expansion, regulatory requirements, and changing vendor and customer needs. We also discuss where an investment in advanced automation needs fits into the context of a move to Business Central from an older ERP solution.

 

Show Notes:

  • 1:30 - What do Business Central document automation standard capabilities look like?
  • 3:00 - Typical requirements lead BC customers to seek more advanced features
  • 4:15 - Why paper documents are less common and electronic documents are often the default today
  • 5:00 - How Lasernet helps BC customers with more complex requirements around format, process, and rules
  • 6:45 - When an organization might invest in document automation before a move to BC (or not)
  • 8:30 - How has BC has evolved to better support advanced ISV capabilities
  • 10:15 - Advances for Lasernet's BC integration
  • 11:30 - Getting started with a Lasernet deployment for BC (and the role of partners)

 

For more information on Lasernet for Dynamics or the Lasernet Connector for Business Central, please visit: https://www.formpipe.com/en/software/lasernet/dynamics-365/ or if you would like to set up a demo, you can contact sales@formpipe.com.

Jun 16, 2022

This episode is sponsored by Columbus.

 

The data and reporting needs of Dynamics ERP customers have changed over the years, but the skills and tools have not always kept up. Preparing for the next phase of operational and financial management is largely about gaining control of business data as strategies and processes change, workers face new  demands on their time, and executives envision a landscape driven by cloud technology.

 

On this episode we are talking about the evolving challenges of data management and analysis with Michael Simms VP of digital advisory and data & analytics at Columbus. Simms is a veteran of the Dynamics AX and F&SCM space and has been on the front lines with customers for many years, working to help organizations get control of their business data with reporting and analysis.

 

Show Notes:

  • 2:30 - The state of traditional data warehouses
  • 4:00 - The importance of curated data sets in today's data management landscape
  • 5:15 - Modernizing data skills for today's demands
  • 9:00 - The emergence of data lakes and how it relates to Dynamics ERPs
  • 10:15 - What to do with legacy data warehouses when planning for future cloud investments
  • 14:30 - The strengths of Azure Synapse and Mike's recent experiences helping clients
  • 17:45 - The importance of creating authoritative data sets and the governance challenges
  • 21:00 - Looking ahead to new reporting suites for business apps
  • 22:00 - Advice on developing expertise as a Microsoft customer

 

For more information about Columbus and our data and analytics solutions, visit us at

https://www.columbusglobal.com/en-us/solutions/data-analytics

Jun 9, 2022

This episode is sponsored by HSO.

Opportunities to modernize field services come in many forms. Our guests on this episode, Max Dinser and Mike Hammons of HSO, help us understand some of the scenarios and technology choices they are helping clients make and where Microsoft's cloud services fit. Some organizations need an overhaul of their field service management, which might call for the deployment of Dynamics 365 Field Service and specialized add-on solutions. Other firms are trying to enhance their field teams' capabilities  by adding augmented reality solutions, providing better insight into equipment via IoT, or asking field workers to help fulfill new business models based on new types of service agreements.

Max and Mike also share the new tech that they are most excited about, ranging from analytics to IoT to automation tools. And we discuss some of the unique scenarios that differentiate one organization's needs from another.

Show Notes:

  • 2:30 - Tech trends that are impacting the field service market today
  • 5:15 - How do organizations take the steps to adopt new tech?
  • 8:30 - A growth model for service businesses
  • 12:00 - Why so many companies are still in a reactive state and should start small with adapting their service portfolio
  • 14:45 - Microsoft's progress on D365 Field Service and other ways to support it
  • 16:30 - What goes into service planning
  • 19:30 - Using Power Platform to round out out of the box solutions
  • 21:00 - Perspectives on servitization with Microsoft tech
  • 25:00 - What do digital twins do for service management?30:00 - The role of IT and the business in service technology investment
  • 33:30 - What the HSO team is excited about in the tech landscape

The report mentioned: Key Drivers for Growth in Service: Research Report with Microsoft and Noventum

For additional resources and workshop from HSO: Connected Field Service

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