Microsoft is a company driven forward by two core areas of its business: cloud and enterprise (C + E). Here, we explore how Dynamics GP – one of Microsoft’s core ERP technologies – is transforming as a result of this focus.
The march towards C + E
In the Dynamics arena, this has meant that the most recent iteration of Microsoft’s premium CRM solution, Dynamics CRM, has come with productivity integration out of the box. For example, Power BI for Office 365 cloud service works with Microsoft Dynamics CRM to provide a self-service analytics solution. It also automatically refreshes the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online data displayed.
In addition, Cloud integration enables shared dashboards and auto-refreshed data within Dynamics CRM Online has helped to provide up-to-the-second sales and marketing material.
The new Dynamics AX takes advantage of Office 365, allowing the user to generate budget data to be presented in Excel while Dynamics AX manages the process of requesting and approving, all the time maintaining a live connection to keep the data up to date. In addition, fields within the software can be modified and deleted directly from Microsoft Excel before submitting the data back to Dynamics AX.
Combining productivity and cloud, Dynamics AX also takes advantage of recent Microsoft acquisitions like Skype for Business.
How C + E is impacting GP
While AX and CRM have undergone a lot of transformation in the way of C + E, ERP solution Dynamics GP has yet to make the full transition.
Things look set to change, however, with GP’s bi-annual software version update set to be guided more heavily by customers, VARs, and ISVs, the feedback received could potentially change GP’s roadmap in the future.
With expectations from the above parties set to favour a more integrated productivity-led technology, it’s not unreasonable to predict that Dynamics GP will be driven head-first down the line of C + E.
According to Microsoft product manager Pam Misialek, “We have to think of GP as part of [the C + E] family, and that is a shift for us”, in a recent interview with MSDynamicsWorld.
That said, any changes in the direction of C + E will be in-line with the demands from GP’s established lower-end SME market. This is a crucial point to make, as some commentators have been conscious that C + E transformation would turn GP into a Dynamics AX lite, which doesn’t look to be the case.
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