Satya Nadella’s arrival has had a rejuvenating effect on the perception of MSCRM in the marketplace. Over the last five years, MSCRM has seen its relative market share to competitor Salesforce.com languish as the market darling of SaaS has seen “hockey stick” like growth rates.
You can appreciate our disappointment having invested a great deal of time, money and energy bringing a commercial real estate specific application to market on the Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform. When we began our CRM practice back in 1996, the cloud was not mentioned other than in discussions about the weather. Now you aren’t taken seriously if you are not “cloud compliant”. It seemed for the longest time that we were on the outside looking in on this whole SaaS/cloud movement having aligned ourselves with a technology company that had a paradigm of generating great “on-premise” software. Attempts were made early on to “go cloud” by Microsoft, but they seemed half-hearted, misunderstood and perceived as inferior compared to other market leaders.
I can honestly say things have changed, not for a season, but fundamentally at Microsoft with an “all in” message from the top on cloud-based computing followed by action evidenced by the market uptake of Office 365 and the revamped online version of Microsoft Dynamics Online. Furthermore, the pricing model for Dynamics CRM Online is aggressively set showing the intent to remove financial obstacles as a barrier to entry. You are also reminded about Microsoft’s focus on a “cloud first” strategy by observing the new release schedule that is rolled out first to their online offering and then applied to the on-premise edition months later.
We’ve just recently completed the migration of our code base originally designed for the on-premise version of MS CRM to MSCRM Online and are excited about the results. The advances of the overall CRM platform overall combined with the hardened platform and processes necessary for industrial strength online offerings has pushed MSCRM back on the table for consideration in any serious CRM initiative.
The online platform which was once perceived as viable only for the small to medium sized business is now scalable for even the largest of implementations. JLL, the second largest commercial real estate company in the world, has been a long time client of Ascendix, and we have recently begun the migration of their implementation from on-premise to online. When it is complete, we will have brought online greater than 5,000 users world-wide on the MS Dynamics CRM Online platform.
In addition to very modern UI, the CRM platform natively integrates with the Office 365 platform in a much deeper way than ever before creating a seamless experience for the end user.
Other advances on the server side Exchange integration take the complexity out of client side synchronization of email, contact and calendar data which has been a challenge in the past to say the least.
Microsoft is back in the game and it’s not just my opinion. Industry experts agree as is evidenced by the recent awards bestowed upon MSCRM in several categories by CRM Magazine: (http://read.nxtbook.com/
And with the quick cadence of new feature releases, we’ll be awaiting more intriguing advances with the 2016 release…
MSCRM Online has arrived as a legitimate option for CRE firms looking for SaaS based CRM solutions. Guest Post: Wes Snow