The popular perception is that Microsoft employs a PAC-MAN strategy, i.e. Microsoft gobbles up small companies which then become even smaller entities within the behemoth that is called Microsoft Corporation. Of course, like most large companies, Microsoft has made its share of acquisitions. BUT, what is less known is that Microsoft supports a thriving network of Independent Software Vendors, known as ISVs. In fact, thousands of ISVs participate in Microsoft’s ISV Program.
If you don’t believe me, take a look at http://www.isv-central.com/search/products.aspx.
How does this relate to Microsoft Dynamics CRM? By supporting an ISV partner channel, Microsoft can offer one of the most comprehensive CRM systems in today’s market. ISVs in the CRM space offer everything from indispensible credit card payment processing services to highly specialized niche applications such as the one I’ve highlighted below for ministries. You can purchase the basic Microsoft Dynamics CRM solution at a reasonable price because it’s not overloaded with modules that many companies will never use. What you get is Sales Force Automation (SFA), Marketing Automation, and Service Management – the 3 main pillars of most CRM systems.
Do you need credit card processing? No problem. There’s an ISV that has developed a credit card processing application that integrates seamlessly with Microsoft Dynamics GP.
Are you a faith-based organization looking for functionality that is rather specific to ministries? No problem. There’s an ISV that has developed an application that will meet your needs and it will seamlessly integrate with Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
The key here is seamless integration of applications developed specifically for Dynamics, applications that have been reviewed and approved by Microsoft.
As you click on the above links, you’ll get a pretty good idea of the extensive, extended functionality available for Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Here at Altico, we use two add-ons that aren’t even on the above list, namely Exact Target (which I’ve blogged about in the past) and C360 (which we use for multi-field search, but that’s just one of the C360 modules).