What is Microsoft Dynamics 365?
A unified platform for ERP and CRM, Dynamics 365 is a cloud-based business management platform. Here’s everything you need to know about Dynamics 365 for your business.
What is Microsoft Dynamics 365?
Dynamics 365 is a range of intelligent business management solutions by Microsoft that optimize your business operations, unify data, and offer agility to meet changing market conditions. Dynamics 365 aims to meet the enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship management (CRM) needs of businesses, all through one cloud-based platform. Due to its flexibility, Dynamics 365 can be adapted to fit almost any business, regardless of industry and size.
Dynamics 365 ERP Solutions Overview
Dynamics 365 ERP solutions focus on managing your day-to-day business activities, such as accounting, procurement, manufacturing, supply chain operations, and more.
One thing that makes Dynamics 365 stand out from other ERP systems is that it allows users to utilize the Microsoft stack and lets you handle financials, sales, and purchasing right through MS Outlook. Its overarching goal is to simplify data management across business processes and apps. There are main Dynamics 365 ERP solutions to choose from are Business Central and Finance and Operations.
Dynamics 365 Business Central
Dynamics 365 Business Central is a comprehensive cloud-based ERP solution geared towards small to mid-sized businesses across various industries. It is an ideal solution for growing businesses as it gives them access to robust functionality, without breaking the bank. It is available on two price points: Essential and Premium.
Key capabilities in the essential licensing include: Financial management, project management, supply chain optimization, sales and customer service, and more. The premium licensing adds on service management and manufacturing. Download a Business Central product sheet for key capabilities.
Business Central's predecessor is Microsoft NAV and users find many benefits in upgrading to Business Central, including getting access to new features and innovations as well as hassle-free upgrades, to name a few.
Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations
Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations is the other main ERP solution and this solution is suitable for larger businesses or companies that may have complex manufacturing needs, global operations, or multiple lines of business.
While commonly referred to as D365 for Finance and Operations, this ERP solution has been licensed by Microsoft as two distinct applications called Dynamics 365 Finance and Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management. It remains a single implementation, but you now have the option to select whether you want one application or both, depending on your business needs.
D365 for Finance is a global financial management solution that offers in-depth reporting capabilities, financial intelligence, and AI with real-time analytics. Download a D365 Finance product sheet for key capabilities.
D365 for Supply Chain Management offers all the tools you need to drive automation, optimize your supply chain, and connect sales and purchasing with warehouse management, logistics, and production. Download a D365 Supply Chain product sheet for key capabilities.
The predecessor to D365 Finance and Operations was Microsoft AX. If you’d like to learn more about moving your on-premises solution to the cloud, get in touch with our advisors to learn more about Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations.
Dynamics 365 CRM Solutions Overview
Dynamics 365 also offers robust applications for customer relationship management (CRM) and according to Gartner, Microsoft has been named as one of the 2020 Gartner Peer Insights Customers’ Choice for CRM Lead Management.
Dynamics 365 for CRM has multiple applications. They can each be used as a stand-alone product or combined with multiple others, to form an end-to-end business solution. This also means that you pay only for the features and capabilities your business needs. You can also leverage any combination of these applications and integrate them with your Dynamics 365 ERP solutions.
Dynamics 365 Sales – Dynamics 365 Sales goes beyond sales force automation and helps you accelerate your sales performance, easily build better pipelines, and improve win rates. Download a product sheet for more information.
Dynamics 365 Customer Service - With Dynamics 365 Customer Service, you can personalize and streamline your customer service and empower your support employees with the tools they need to resolve issues quickly and accurately. Download a product sheet for more information.
Dynamics 365 Project Service Automation – Project managers can leverage Dynamics 365 Project Service Automation to forecast and boost project profitability, improve project management, and optimize resources efficiently. Download a product sheet for more information.
Dynamics 365 Field Service – Streamline scheduling, inventory management, and on-site efficiency. With this CRM solution, your field agents have access to smart scheduling and efficient routing which reduces their travel times.
Dynamics 365 Marketing – This Dynamics 365 CRM application lets you generate multichannel campaigns, nurture leads, and align your sales and marketing teams.
The predecessor to Dynamics 365 for customer engagement was Dynamics CRM and by upgrading to Dynamics 365, users gain access to more functionality and features.
Additional Dynamics 365 Solutions
Dynamics 365 also has product offerings that go beyond ERP and CRM solutions. Once again, these applications can be easily integrated with any Dynamics 365 product.
Dynamics 365 Human Resources – Transform your employee experiences with Dynamics 365 for Human Resources. This application helps you optimize your HR programs and increase organizational agility. Its predecessor was known as Dynamics 365 Talent.
Dynamics 365 Commerce – This application lets you deliver a unified shopping experience and connects your online, in-store, and back-office operations on one user-friendly platform. Its predecessor was known as Dynamics 365 Retail.
Dynamics 365 AI – You can easily adopt AI in your business with Dynamics 365 AI. There are multiple add-on options under this offering, including D365 Sales Insights, D365 Customer Insights, D365 Customer Service Insights, and D365 Virtual Agent for Customer Service, to name a few.
Dynamics 365 Mixed Reality – Dynamics 365 also offers a range of mixed reality applications to help you optimize your operations. These include D365 Remote Assist, D365 Guides, and D365 Product Visualize.
Dynamics 365 Integrations and Apps
Once you’ve decided on a Dynamics 365 solution, you’ll be happy to learn that you can customize your solution further to meet your business needs with a range of Dynamics 365 integrations and apps. Here are some popular ones to know about:
Power BI - Microsoft Power BI is a business intelligence software tool that integrates extremely well with Dynamics 365. It is one of the apps from Microsoft’s Power Platform and it can be used as a stand-alone application. Essentially, it helps you gain a better understanding of your business performance and financials and makes it easy to compile reports and dashboards.
Office 365 – Office 365 is an application that easily integrates with Dynamics 365 and in many cases, enhances the solution. For instance, you can invoice directly from Outlook in Dynamics 365 Business Central. The range of productivity and scheduling tools included in Office 365 means you can simplify the way you work even more.
Microsoft App Source – If you are looking for custom add-ons or specific functionality in your Dynamics 365 product, tailored to your industry, you can visit Microsoft App Source. It features custom solutions designed by various Microsoft Partners, which can be integrated with your product. For instance, Kwixand Solutions has a custom app for Dynamics 365 Business Central called Subscription Management, which helps manage reoccurring Payables and Receivables.
Benefits of Dynamics 365 for Businesses
Dynamics 365 works for businesses of all sizes and even small or mid-sized businesses can get access to an industry-leading ERP or CRM application, without breaking the bank. Here are a few of the top benefits Dynamics 365 has to offer:
Cloud-Based: As a cloud-based product, Dynamics 365 offers business agility, increased security, reduced operational costs, and hassle-free software updates. That said, there are also some on-premise versions of Dynamics 365 apps for businesses that may have special regulatory environments.
Shared Data Source: Thanks to Microsoft’s Common Data Service (CDS), you can store and manage data created and used across all your business applications. This standardizes how data is stored across different applications and databases, which means no matter which Dynamics 365 application you are using, your data is up-to-date.
Robust Functionality: Dynamics 365 solutions utilize cutting edge technologies and provide robust features to help you meet your business needs. At any time, you can extend functionalities by integrating add-ons or even building low-code apps, through Power Apps.
Cost Efficient: Dynamics 365 solutions are subscription-based, which means smaller businesses do not need a significant upfront investment to get their solution up and running. Most D365 apps also charge per user, which means you can easily increase or decrease users as you scale or downscale, which can come in handy for SMBs.
User-Friendly Interface: Dynamics 365 has an easy-to-use interface, which allows users to quickly learn their way around it. Especially if you’ve used Microsoft products before, the navigation will be familiar and you’ll have a smaller learning curve.
Dynamics 365 System Implementation
If you are thinking about adopting or upgrading to Dynamics 365, you will need to find a Microsoft Partner to help you select, implement, and support your solution. A good Microsoft Partners will help you figure out which application will best fit your business needs and how to successfully implement it for your business, based on your business processes and values.
As a Silver Certified Microsoft Dynamics Partner, the team at Kwixand Solutions, have decades of experience in ERP and CRM implementation, project management, and business process improvement and can guide you throughout your digital transformation journey. Book a free consultation with us to learn more.