Following our Microsoft Ignite highlight last week, here is highlight number 2!

We have chosen an old favourite…Microsoft Teams!

Now this isn’t just Teams as a stand-alone product (though it is great!) this is about the ever-deepening integration of teams into Dynamics 365 (D365) and the Power Platform (PP). When you break down what some of the updates are, again in line with my previous post about my favourite customer voice channel, they may sound a bit underwhelming. Basically, its that you can use bits of D365 and PP inside Teams, and you can use bits of Teams inside D365 and PP….

So what?” you ask. “Isn’t that just a techy thing that might save a couple of clicks or mean that some data is in one place for reporting, why would I care?”

It’s not a ‘techy’ thing! (well, I’m sure the MS Product team have done lots of very technical things to make this happen but the point of this one is purely business driven).

Pretty much every company has several departments and as much as the board or management team want them all to use the same system, invariably, they’ll use whatever is easiest for them at the time, usually with the mantra of “I’ll update the other systems when I get the time”, and we all know that hardly ever happens.

So how do these changes help that?”

What these updates do is allow functionality in the common denominator that is Teams (or for those using D365, to communicate directly into Teams). So, when sales opportunities or customer service cases are being discussed in Teams, they can then be actioned straight into the relevant business application at the same time! Or you can pull the relevant info straight from D365 or the PP right into Teams, so you have all the most up to date info right in front of everyone mid-conversation.

Over the years, one of the main challenges that I’ve seen that companies face is communication between different departments. We can see these updates providing a very simple, low barrier way to address that issue head on using apps that everyone is familiar with (and are usually already licensed for!)

You can find out more of the details of these updates at the links below:

Book of News – Teams Updates

Book of News – D365 Updates

MS Blog on “Hyperconnected Business”

The one caveat we will say about some of these new features is that some are still in “Preview”. What this means is that they are available to use, but Microsoft don’t recommend them for production use as they may change or not have the full uptime and support SLA’s that general release features have. With the amount of effort that Microsoft are putting into getting these features running to the best of their ability, we can’t see any future where these main features get dropped or significant changes made… and Microsoft are craving feedback on them. So start using them and communicating with Microsoft about them! It may allow you to influence tweaks here and there and will help to put you ahead of the pack with implementation and adoption of these next gen features.

Connect with our solutions specialists Iain Kennedy or Craig McGeogh if you’d like more information.