In this blog we discuss how the marketing workload of Dynamics 365 supports the four Ps: Product, Price, Promotion and Place.
When AbeTech made the decision to move to Microsoft Dynamics CRM back in 2011, they recognized the need for ongoing support from their implementation partner, HCL-PowerObjects. To address this need, they signed onto the Dedicated Support Engineer (DSE) support program, which provides organizations with a single point of contact to better manage and facilitate support requests.
In addition to serving as AbeTech’s dedicated resource for all Dynamics and Microsoft Business Application support needs, their DSE drives proactive engagements to help anticipate and address potential issues before they have an impact. At monthly review meetings between the DSE and AbeTech’s IT Business Analyst, Nicky Schmidt, they discuss open and closed support tickets, conduct a state of the business review, and talk through potential process-improving customizations. “Our DSE starts our meetings by saying, ‘Hey, how's everything going? What do you need from me?’ He’s the best,” says Schmidt, “it’s a pleasure working with him.”
So, when the time came to conquer their latest challenge – moving to the most recent version of Dynamics 365 Sales and migrating to the cloud – they naturally relied on their DSE.
The key to AbeTech’s sustained success with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales is the ongoing relationship they have with their HCL-PowerObjects Dedicated Support Engineer (DSE). As long-time DSE Program customers know, there is tremendous value in always partnering with the same support person – they become familiar with the intricacies and customizations of the system, so there is no ramp-up time required when issues emerge. In the case of AbeTech, they’ve had the same DSE resource for several years, “So he knows our system inside and out,” says Schmidt. “His familiarity with our business made the migration very straightforward.”
Migration and More
The initial plan was a simple version upgrade and cloud migration. But as the project got started, the team at AbeTech made the decision to make it a much more significant initiative by simultaneously streamlining internal processes to ensure they were extracting the greatest benefit from their investment in the Microsoft technology stack.
“Looking across the business,” says Schmidt, “we identified several processes that were still being facilitated outside of Dynamics. We decided to take this opportunity to not only streamline those processes but also build them into our Dynamics 365 system through customizations. Our DSE was instrumental in making that happen.” As a result of these upgrades, user adoption increased dramatically across AbeTech.
And it’s done more than just increase user adoption: with the help of their HCL-PowerObjects DSE, AbeTech’s Dynamics 365 system and process improvement initiative now follows a regular release schedule cadence. They meet monthly to identify opportunities and define the upgrades and customizations needed to support it. Schmidt says, “We have a backlog of wish list items and are releasing new content to our end-user base monthly.”
PowerPack Add-ons Make Life Easier at AbeTech
In the decade-plus that AbeTech has partnered with HCL-PowerObjects, they have used as many as seven different PowerPack add-ons, including PowerGlobalSearch and PowerPhoto, both of which they continue to use on a regular basis. The full suite of HCL-PowerObjects’ PowerPack add-ons is available free of charge to all DSE support program subscribers.
“Having access to this additional functionality that is not part of the core application is such a positive for us,” says Schmidt. “Being able to access all these PowerPack add-ons without having to write any custom code has certainly helped save us a lot of money. They're just nice features to have, and we could use them right away.”
Dynamics 365 Enables Steady growth
AbeTech has grown steadily and substantially in the decade they’ve been with HCL-PowerObjects, and their use of Dynamics has grown in lockstep. “We are actively acquiring companies,” says Schmidt, “and what’s been so great about Dynamics 365 is that whether these companies bring with them 10, a hundred, or a thousand customers, we’re able to incorporate them seamlessly into our funnel and very quickly get the employees of these acquired companies to use the system in precisely the same way our AbeTech employees are using it.”
In addition to enabling efficient integration and offering true scalability, Dynamics 365 is lauded by AbeTech for its ease of use, flexibility, and customizability. Of course, the fact that is it so customization-friendly is exactly why it’s so critical to have a Microsoft partner they can trust. Ten years in, there’s no doubt they’ve found that trusted partner in HCL-PowerObjects.
“When we first decided on the Microsoft CRM solution more than a decade ago, we sought a partner that was knowledgeable and experienced, of course, but also one that was responsive and capable of guiding us on our Dynamics journey. PowerObjects fit the bill then and still hasn’t stopped impressing us with their expertise and commitment to excellence,” says Schmidt. “And we just love the DSE program.”
Our Dedicated Support Engineer is always available when I need him, and he never fails to find the best solution to any challenge I bring him. He starts out every one of our meetings by saying, ‘Hey, how's everything going? What do you need from me?’ He’s the best, it’s a pleasure working with him.”