remote worker drinking coffee

Different combinations of crisis have been pushing survival questions of not only businesses, but also the human race. None more so than the Coronavirus crisis situation, the phenomenon that will always be remembered as the catalyst that changed the way we live and work forever. In terms of business, this new world calls for a new type of organisation that is truly ready to transform their ways of working through next-gen collaboration tools and effective cloud integration.
Global workforce leaders have been forced to quickly find alternate ways of working to enable business continuity. Many of them have suddenly ramped up their use of Microsoft Teams and other collaboration tools in order to get their, now disparate, teams connected. In fact, the take up of MS teams has been so large that the Microsoft servers in Europe even went down for 2 hours this week.
If you are not already familiar with Microsoft Teams, it’s a tool that comprises of virtual work spaces called Teams and Channels that are used for various projects. Users jump from one work-space to another during their day. Each work space (Team) is comprised of one or more channels, each with its own email address, file storage, one to one chat, team chat, video conferencing and many third party collaborations.

Teams Collaboration wizard
If you are already using Dynamics 365, you are probably already integrating it with other applications such as Outlook, SharePoint and other Office Products, but you should definitely consider this extra nugget to overcome the newly presented challenges of quarantined situations.

Dynamics 365 integration with Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams is now a key collaboration application in the Office 365 world and as such it can connect many applications in one interface.
Though Microsoft Teams has plenty of external communication capabilities, MS Teams has fast become the de-facto tool for inbound collaboration within business and enterprise setup. Dynamics 365, on the other hand, tends to be the outbound dimension of a company’s strategy. With the integration of internal facing MS Teams and outbound facing Dynamics 365, you find yourself in a sweet spot where you get a full 360 degree view on both company’s internal operations and outbound strategy.

Venn diagram showing sweet spot in Teams and D365 integration

Users can now access Dynamics data right from within MS Teams. The users can pin Dynamics records that they want to collaborate on. For example, a sales team might want to collaborate on an opportunity record. The internal sales team can all access the details of and update the opportunity record. As a side bonus; this also has implications for increased CRM user adoption.
The team can also chat and use collaborations features such as file storage, excel sales sheets or OneNote. The sales opportunity or project scenario is a particularly nice example because of the possibilities with file storage. Any documents uploaded to MS Teams will also be visible in Dynamics by default, but not the other way round. We use this method internally to ensure that sensitive documents are uploaded into Dynamics only, anything else goes into MS Team for general team consumption.

D365 Account record in MS Teams

Dynamics 365 assistant Bot

This is another cool feature which brings solid AI flavour in the collaboration space. The Dynamics 365 Bot is capable of searching and showing D365 records in the Teams UI in response to comments posted to the D365 Bot. In our opinion, the bot is not ready for prime time (at time of writing) but worth checking out for very simple requirements.

D365 assistant configure

Summary

Although, we are barely allowed outside our front doors right now, this new era of collaboration tools and remote team working does, ironically, represent great opportunities for effective working. This is great news for those who like to travel. We no longer need to be tied to a specific location just because it’s close to the office. We’ll be able to stay connected and work from wherever we are in the world.
Happy collaborations to you and your team 😊

Give us a shout to talk about how we can help you with any Dynamics 365 integrations. Also, ask us about a free license review. We have recently saved an organisation more than £2,000 per month after reviewing their CRM usage against the licenses they held.

About Iain Wicks

Iain has been working in the CRM industry since 1999 and has a wealth of experience of implementing CRM for small to medium sized business teams. Iain’s focus is on “Keeping it simple” and on user adoption,