Be nice to your customer service team this Christmas. Microsoft recognised the need to modernise their current customer service infrastructure. Microsoft Dynamics CRM fall update, has introduced a consolidated solution which includes self-assisted and field service. The introduction of the Unified Service Desk which provides service organisations with the unique ability to deliver a single agent desktop with access to back end systems and third party applications. The install process has been greatly improved by enabling upgrades and patches to be delivered through windows update/system centre. Improved auditing and diagnostic settings dictate which events and actions are logged through the centralised auditing configuration. Third party systems, such as, Azure and HDInsights is now available out of the box. The spring update saw the integration of Parature knowledge management. This is being supplemented with a new role orientated agent experience, a centralised Knowledge Management solution and CRM surveys to capture customer opinion on case specific scenarios with Voice of the Customer. The acquisition of Field One has enhanced field service capabilities.

One of the most exciting features introduced in the Fall Update provides an all new role based experience for CSAs. Agents can get a real-time view of their workload. Multi-Stream and Single-Stream views can cater for the information requirements of CSAs at all levels. It has been designed with modernism, simplicity and intuitiveness at the core, with the goal of increasing productivity.

Microsoft’s new release brings enhanced intelligence and insights to the next level in analytics-driven intelligence and a native knowledge management system for CRM. This means that organizations can capture — and access — information that helps them systematically resolve issues faster. Service intelligence is further enhanced through analytics enabling organizations to understand and improve the performance of their service operation. Machine learning capabilities in the new release represent a dramatic step forward in agent empowerment providing answers to questions and helping them better solve problems on the spot. With Azure Machine Learning, Microsoft are making customer engagement more intelligent, enabling organizations to learn over time from the issues they are facing so that patterns can be identified, speeding time to resolution and continuously improving performance.

With Dynamics CRM 2016 Microsoft are delivering a solution that not only captures the signals communicated in various channels in the market, but also empowers the agent to provide meaningful feedback. They will soon be adding capabilities that enable improved communications arising from listening to the voice of the customer by capturing and leveraging customer feedback through surveys to shape customer engagements with easy to use, mobile and touch-enabled tools. Feedback can be analysed as part of a single customer record — enabling a direct response to a specific customer concern. Or it can be analysed as a whole – so that organizations can better understand their market and programmatically respond to customer needs. The new release also leverages social channels with Azure Machine Learning to instantly track and analyse relevant sentiment via Microsoft Social Engagement, and engage directly with customers on social channels such as Twitter and Facebook, with the option of converting issues surfaced through social channels into cases.