Are You Ready for Dynamics 365 Changes?

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Aaron Back, MCP

With all the buzz and information swirling around the upcoming release of the Version 9.0 update for Dynamics 365, you will usually see a lot of excitement regarding new features and functions. However, simple things are often overlooked. But, the simple things can have a significant impact.

Change is Tough

Change is difficult enough for us as individuals, but change within a company can be very challenging. Yet, if you have made changes an integral part of your business and processes, then it will not be tough to make the changes. People will be used to changes, and can easily adopt new ones.

Still, you may be faced with the “we’ve always done it this way” wall that may seem hard to overcome. The first step in implementing change is recognizing that change is needed. You will then need to lay out an actionable plan on how to implement the change which can make positive impacts in the long-run.

Dynamics 365 is flexible enough that you can introduce minor changes over time. However, with a major update such as Version 9.0, you will need to evaluate the significant changes and plan accordingly.

Falling Behind

Another point to consider is if you are falling behind in the technology. Dynamics 365 is changing at a rapid pace. If you call too far behind it could hinder the cost to get caught up. Thus, you are in a catch-22. So, by staying as current as possible given your companies needs and scenario, you can potentially avoid costly upgrades.

Additionally, you could be missing out on new features that could save money, reduce time, or change business processes altogether. This may include integration with Office 365 (OneNote, SharePoint, Outlook, Word, Excel), better analytics with Power BI, or a better mobile experience for your field personnel.

Lastly, you may be able to remove an add-on or custom code because there are now native functions that are more easily managed.

How Can I Get Prepared?

You may find yourself at a point where you are asking, “Where do I begin?” If so, just take a deep breath and start with a plan. You will need to keep the plan simple. Start with the high-level needs, actions, and goals. Evaluate what you plan to keep the same within Dynamics 365, and what new things do you plan on introducing.

You will also need to make sure you fully understand the new things. New features and functions in Dynamics 365 can introduce exciting possibilities. And, you may find out that some features and functions are going away.

In either case, learn all you can about these things so that you can get others just as excited as you are. I found this makes changes less challenging when you have the support of others.

In closing

If you still feel unprepared, you need to first realize that you are not alone. You can reach out to your peers in the CRMUG community. There are many folks who have been where you are and can’t provide excellent guidance.

And, to quote Walt Disney: “Around here, however, we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we're curious… and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”

Aaron Back is Microsoft Certified Professional with many years experience with Microsoft Dynamics 365 (CRM). He is actively involved with the Microsoft Dynamics CRMUG (User Group) Community. His involvement includes: Serving as Chapter Leader for his local CRMUG Chapter, serving on the CRMUG Board of Advisors, and speaking at the annual CRMUG Summit conference.

For more information or assistance with Dynamics 365 (CRM) contact ACE!

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