Earlier this month, Microsoft announced the official start of the 2020 release wave one, which included the deployment of new applications and capabilities for Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Power Platform.

With these updates, Microsoft are providing support and resources to organisations, prioritising seamless business continuity for all its customers and releasing new innovations that span customer engagement, commerce and supply chain management.

From seamless customer journeys, intelligent supply chains and Power Platform improvements, Microsoft’s latest updates vow to enhance the user experience, giving businesses the tools they need to deliver better results.

In this blog we take a closer look at some of the most significant updates announced in 2020 release wave one plans.

Seamless customer journeys

As demonstrated at the Microsoft Business Applications Virtual Launch Event, the updates to Dynamics 365 Customer Insights and Microsoft’s customer data platform (CDP) have been vital in creating seamless B2B and B2C customer journeys.

By predicting customer behaviour using out-of-the-box AI templates for churn, customer lifetime value and next best action recommendations, organisations can unlock the value of their data and access deeper insights using Microsoft Azure Synapse Analytics.

Within B2C businesses, these insights can be used to gain a deeper understanding of customer habits, allowing businesses to improve engagement throughout the customer journey.

Meanwhile, B2B organisations can now take advantage of new customer engagement capabilities in Dynamics 365 sales, marketing, customer service and field service to provide customers with a consistent and personalised experience throughout the buyer journey.

With access to AI-powered predictive sales forecasting and a new sales acceleration hub, businesses now have the capabilities needed to dig deeper into their existing data, delivering enhanced campaigns that are tailored to their customers.

Intelligent supply chain

As part of the 2020 release wave one, there have also been significant updates to the Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management, allowing it to deliver predictive insights and intelligence from AI, IoT and mixed reality.

By leveraging Azure IoT Hub to connect data and assets, manufacturers have been given the information needed to improve uptime and quality by proactively managing ongoing operations with a real-time view of production and stock.

Integrating with Dynamics 365 Field Service, the Supply Chain Management service will effectively reduce the downtime of mission critical assets by automating field service operations.

Meanwhile, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Guides will allow businesses to train their workforces efficiently, using mixed reality learning experiences to give employees a better understanding of the tasks they’re expected to complete.

In addition to these operational benefits, the introduction of Dynamics 365 Finance Insights will bring the power of AI into finance processes, while Dynamics 365 Project Operations will offer a comprehensive solution for service organisations to connect and run all aspects of the business.

New Power BI capabilities

Regular readers of our blog know we like to keep a close eye on the latest Power BI developments to understand how they’ll impact our clients.

The new capabilities introduced as part of the 2020 release wave one focus on three key areas, allowing customers to drive a data culture during a period of uncertainty, where business-enhancing insights can make all the difference.

The highly requested decomposition tree AI visual has recently been added, building on Power BI’s core data exploration experiences. A new Q&A experience and modern ribbon have also been introduced to offer familiarity for Microsoft Office users.

To meet the most demanding needs of enterprise customers, Microsoft has added full application lifecycle management, allowing customers to move an app through a deployment pipeline.

Finally, customers can weave business intelligence into the fabric of their organisation with extra support for Microsoft Information Protection and Microsoft Cloud App Security, ensuring data remains protected when it leaves Power BI.

Exciting times ahead...

The highly anticipated release wave one has brought about a number of key changes to some of Microsoft’s most popular services.

Designed to enhance the user experience and allow business operations to continue running smoothly during a period of uncertainty, these updates will give a new lease of life to many companies who are feeling the pressure in the current climate.

By implementing a solution that utilises both Dynamics 365 and Power Platform, organisations will be able to deliver better results.

The Microsoft Business Applications Virtual Launch Event is now available on demand here: https://bit.ly/34ZtNjA

If you’d like more advice on any of the topics discussed, then contact our team and find a solution that works for you.