News: New Capabilities Coming for D365 & Power Platform

A Review of Microsoft 2020 Release wave 1

Authors: FormusPro Technical Team | Formus Professional Software | Jan/Feb 2020

Microsoft have just announced the release of their latest feature plans for Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform 2020.

This article aims to pick out some of the important feature updates provided by Microsoft, that we think you should be aware of and excited about.

The compilation of these new capabilities will be rolled out between April and September 2020 but there will most likely be a 2020 release wave 2 update with further information or changes before this, so watch this space for more.

Laptop on desk and heading Coming Soon 2020 referencing D365 wave 1

Note: The compilation of these new capabilities will be rolled out between April and September 2020 but there will most likely be a 2020 release wave 2 update with further information or changes before this, so watch this space for more.

We encourage application administrators to review these changes to understand the impact and determine if change management for new features is required.

We would also suggest that if you have in house system developers, that they take advantage of the early access period to try out the latest updates in a non-production environment.

We are already getting ready to roll out the updates to our own clients with confidence.

For questions, get in touch or visit Microsoft’s Early Access FAQ page.

Licenceing Updates

We have been looking into the looming issue of licences, after the April release update for the new team member licence restrictions.

Microsoft have announced an extended deadline of 30/06/2020 for the update for any user that currently has licences (or acquiring new licences before 01/04/2020).

Any licences purchased after 01/04/2020 will be forced into the new update limitations.

We are doing some more testing on the limitations of the new team member app and can confirm that the new format limits the user to a read-only license, allowing only minor changes to a limited number of entities.

However, depending on how Microsoft enforce the new update, we may be able to work around the restrictions for a short while.

We will continue to research the issue and will keep you updated with our findings.

Dynamics 365 Updates 2020

highlights: CRM/CE

Note: CE is still sometimes referred to by clients as Dynamics CRM. Customer Engagement (CE) is the overarching name for the collective set of applications Microsoft has been reworking for the last few years and is made up of: D365 for Sales, D365 for Customer Service, D365 for Project Service Automation, D365 for Field Service, Microsoft Social Engagement and Microsoft PowerApps.

  • Dynamics 365 Sales Insights improve inside sales scenarios and enhances conversation intelligence capabilities. New features include deeper conversation analysis with emotion detection to enable sellers to understand and improve communications with leads.
  • Dynamics 365 Customer Service expands agent productivity tooling to help organisations evolve a proactive and predictive service model.
  • Dynamics 365 Customer Service Insights optimises the customer service experience through AI, with new capabilities including richer integration with Power Virtual Agents and access to the insights data for in-depth analytics.
  • Dynamics 365 Field Service now includes the capability to define and capture inspections. This allows customers to design inspections, complete inspections via a mobile device, capture inspection results for analysis or further action, associate an inspection with a work order.
  • Dynamics 365 Field Service work hours calendar is having a long-overdue facelift. Making it cleaner and more user-friendly.
  • Dynamics 365 Field Service improves effectiveness through a new resource scheduling dashboard, integration with Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management, and technician time entries.
  • Dynamics 365 Marketing is enhancing product usability and personalised marketing capabilities with dynamic content for contacts, and integration with third-party content management systems.
  • Dynamics 365 Customer Insights enhances data profiling enrichment and segmentation capabilities, helping organisations better understand their customer data and derive actionable insights to drive business processes.

highlights: D365 Operations, Finance, Commerce & HR application

  • Dynamics 365 Human Resources expands capabilities for human resources professionals, employees, and managers around leave, absence and benefit management.
  • Dynamics 365 Commerce strengthens the personalised, omnichannel experience for consumers by adding e-commerce, providing smart product recommendations.
  • Dynamics 365 Fraud Protection helps merchants increase revenue and reduce fraud losses and costs while improving the consumer’s online check-out experience by releasing two new services, account protection, and loss prevention.
  • Dynamics 365 Finance releases enhancements to country-specific tax, invoicing, payment formats, and regulatory reporting capabilities to help global organisations stay compliant with newly introduced local regulations.
  • Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management helps organisations reduce operational costs by introducing customer self-service experiences, enhancements to asset management, and the new on-hand inventory service for inventory visibility across Dynamics 365 and other legacy systems.

Power Platform Updates 2020

Some of the most exciting developments we have seen coming out of Microsoft the last year have been around the new Power Platform. Earlier last year we wrote an article breaking down the best bits, what it is how it works and what its comprised of. This new release improves this amazing collection of tools even further.

New capabilities combine Power BI, Power Apps, Power Automate, Power Virtual Agents, and the Common Data Service into an unmatched palette of tools to analyse data, build solutions, and automate processes.

Power Platform highlights:

  • Power Automate updates include robotic process automation (RPA) capabilities to automate rule-based tasks with point-and-click simplicity supporting on-premises or cloud-based apps.
  • Power Apps gains significant improvements for developers of all skill levels, improving the sophistication and usability of apps that are created across the web and mobile devices.
  • Power BI improves in four key areas including intuitive experiences, a unified BI platform, big data analytics, and pervasive artificial intelligence (AI). Microsoft business intelligence simplifies how organisations derive insights from transactional and observational data. It helps organisations create a data culture where employees can make decisions based on facts, not opinions.

For a complete list of new capabilities in this release, please check out the Microsoft pages on Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform 2020 release wave 1 plans.