Dynamics 365 Essentials for IT | Intro

Dynamics 365 Essentials for IT | Intro


(low whooshing) (low thudding) (calm music) – Welcome to Dynamics
365 Essentials for IT. Whether you’re looking to
adopt business applications or have existing CRM and/or ERP systems in house, or maybe you’re using
cloud-based services or both, in the next few minutes,
I’ll give you an overview of Dynamics 365, our
business application platform in the cloud. I’ll explain the components,
the underlying architecture, the integrations for your existing data, apps, and business processes. And I’ll cover top-of-mind
questions regarding data governance, security,
compliance, and more. So let’s first start by addressing what Microsoft Dynamics 365 is. You can think of Dynamics 365 as a set of connected modular SaaS applications and services designed to both transform and enable your core customer, employee, and business activities. Not only does it combine CRM and ERP capabilities, but
Dynamics 365 integrates your data, business logic, and processes. For example, this is the difference between having separate, siloed sales and marketing functions versus creating automated,
integrated, and intelligent sales and marketing capabilities that efficiently connect, prioritize, and convert your sales
leads into paying customers. It’s built on Microsoft
Azure, which offers both a trusted platform and a broad ecosystem of services. And it’s natively integrated with your familiar productivity
apps in Microsoft 365, which also gives you a unified way to manage users and services. Together with Microsoft 365 and Azure, Dynamics 365 offers a dramatically updated
experience, which is unified, adaptable, intelligent, and modern. Central to Dynamics 365
is the common data service and its common data model schema. This provides a foundation
for data integration across all Dynamics 365 applications and services, productivity and collaboration apps in Microsoft 365, as well as your in-house and even SaaS applications
in other clouds. More on this in a moment. The applications within Dynamics 365 are adaptable to your business, as well as your specific
departmental needs. Our goal is to meet you where you are and we’ve designed each application to work great on their own, so that you can decide
which to start with, and at the same time, each is designed to work
even better together. This adaptability also extends to how your users want to work. The apps in Dynamics 365 follow responsive design principles
and are browser-based. They’re accessible from
anywhere on any device and there is also a rich array
of mobile apps available. Your users can choose to work in email or in Microsoft Teams, enjoying an integrated
experience with Dynamics 365. And as an IT professional, you
still have ultimate control over how the services and applications are configured
to meet your business and security needs with the admin tools that we provide out of the box. Also, you can use the Microsoft Power
Platform to build custom and automated experiences around your data and processes using Power BI, Power Apps, and Power Automate, with
zero to minimal coding. This has the added advantage of allowing even your users to safely
build custom app experiences on their own by leveraging the point-and-click app creation
experience in Power Apps, that’s similar to building PowerPoint, and the visual workflow
engine in Power Automate. Importantly, built-in intelligence allows your business users to derive fast and actionable insights, which
can be optimized even further with additional AI services built on Azure or by leveraging purpose-built AI insights apps, like Customer Insights. Also, Power BI gives you a
powerful data visualization and analytics tool, and you can use AI Builder
to apply machine learning to improve your business
insights and processes. You can then go the next level by modernizing how your business interacts with applications, by visualizing insights in real-world scenarios through the addition of mixed reality. For example, you can
scale on-the-job training to help your employees
get hands-on guidance to improve their skills
with Dynamics 365 guides. Now, as a technical decision maker or influencer for your
organization, business value aside, you might be wondering
what all of this means for how you run your IT and
business operations today. If you’re coming from
on-prem, operationally, there are lots of advantages
to adopting a SaaS solution in terms of reducing
your infrastructure costs and access to the continuous innovation offered with Dynamics 365. And as you entrust your business to us, we give you visibility into overall service performance affecting your tenants and auditability over activities in the services that you adopt. You also get to decide what systems and data you would
prefer to stay on-premise versus moving them to the cloud. I’ll share more on systems integration and how we help in a moment. First, let me address some of the areas where you may have questions. Let’s talk about availability. Because Dynamics 365
natively runs on Azure, it benefits from Microsoft’s
expansive cloud fabric and data centers, globally. To give you peace of mind,
we operate our services to meet a 99.9% level of availability. You can learn more at aka.ms/D365SLA. And if your users are spread
across different locations, you can host your Dynamics 365 services and your data in preferred
data center regions around the world, in proximity to your users to reduce latency. In terms of security and privacy, it’s your data and you own it. We don’t mine it for
marketing or advertising. Importantly, we give you
granular admin controls to define individual
access or security groups and you can also specify access rules within the specific fields
used in our app experiences to remove sensitive information from view, and for example, to set read-only access. Equally, we give you encryption options. For example, you can use
your own encryption keys to protect data from unauthorized access, viewing, or export. And as you add users to
Dynamics 365 services and if necessary, connect with your existing directory services, you can take advantage of
identity-based security with Azure Active Directory
to implement single sign-on for users across applications, portals, and services, as well as
multi-factor authentication and intelligent conditional
access policies. Now, let’s talk about compliance. As you would expect, Dynamics
365 is GDPR compliant and supports major global, government, regional, and industry regulations. The services within Dynamics 365 comply with applicable data
protection and privacy laws and are built from the
ground up to address your most rigorous
security and privacy needs. With our compliance framework
of industry-verified controls built into the service, we make it easier for your organization to both
comply to existing standards or respond to new standards
and regulations as they arise. That said, this is still an
area of shared responsibility. As a customer, you can use
our Service Trust Portal and Compliance Manager to
assess your current state of compliance, learn
about recommended controls to implement against a specific
regulatory requirement, and identify which controls Microsoft has in place or is working on. To learn more about Dynamics 365 security and compliance, you can download the guide at aka.ms/D365SecurityCompliance. Of course, one of the biggest
questions for most of you will be, how does Dynamics 365 integrate with your existing environment? Let’s revisit the common data service that I mentioned earlier. Data is arguably the most
valuable business asset you have, yet spread across applications,
departments, and services. Many data and compute services have data and logic capabilities that
are disjointed from each other, and this often requires
you to build unique data and logic stacks for each application. And because of this, it can be a challenge to build integrated experiences or even analyze the data across the apps. This is where the common data
service, or CDS, comes in. Using CDS, your apps and processes can
interact with a single set of data shapes and business logic. Let me explain. CDS is a heterogeneous storage service for both structured tabular data and unstructured data, such
as images or log files. It runs in Azure and it’s shared by
Dynamics 365 applications, Microsoft 365, and the Power Platform. CDS understands the shape of your data and it even understands how to best store different types of data. It will automatically place
image assets in blob storage and text strings in tabular data. For example, it will
shape phone number data into a specific type of text string that might be used for making phone calls. Then beyond the shape of your data, CDS also understands the
business logic over that data. Here, CDS will aggregate values
and associated activities. For example, in the case of a customer, it might maintain related
relevant data for that customer, including minimum, maximum,
average transaction size, and the sum total. To support a consistent way of shaping and connecting your data, we’ve open sourced the
schema we use in CDS. This is the foundation of what we call the common data model, or CDM. The common data model defines entities, attributes, semantic metadata, and relationships to provide
consistency in how data is defined and connected
across your applications. And our partners across industries
like healthcare, retail, financial analytics, education, and automotive have helped extend the CDM with industry-specific,
common interoperable schemas. The CDS is also a powerful
source for analytics that you can integrate
with other data sources. Using Power BI data flows,
you can also export data from CDS into an Azure data lake or even your preferred
location for analysis. Conversely, you can transform
your data into CDM form using Power BI data flows,
making it ready for CDS or other services to access. Then, to integrate your systems and business processes with Dynamics 365 and the common data
service, there are hundreds of pre-built connectors
covering popular data platforms and apps to allow you to
connect to your existing systems for both read-only processes, such as one-time batch operation, and read-write communications,
such as order fulfillment. These connectors take care
of which app APIs to call, how to authenticate, and
how to pass data back and forth between applications
with shared workflows. This now makes it easier
to query, interact with, and exchange information,
whether that’s Dynamics 365 data or data within your office
collaboration tools, internal databases, or even
external systems, such as Adobe and SAP, or maybe professional and social networks, such
as LinkedIn and Twitter. You can also create your own connectors for your internal apps, and if you’d like more granular control, Microsoft Azure provides
the developer tools and language of your choice
to do more custom development. So what’s next? As you consider how to enable
your businesses transformation and a connected, intelligent
business application strategy that spans each department and organization, Dynamics 365 provides a complete technology stack
across applications, services, and tools, all of which are designed to work better together. You can leverage your investment in Microsoft 365 with native integration. And with our available connectors and the Power Platform, you can create custom app experiences and automate processes
in a far more accessible connected way in a fraction of the time, all with zero to minimal
code and less risk. That said, help is at
hand if you are migrating from existing systems or
need more help integrating custom or third-party apps. With our FastTrack onboarding services, along with our authorized partners, we can work alongside your
internal teams to maximize your onboarding success
and minimize time to value. You can find out more at
aka.ms/FastTrackDynamics365. And please keep checking back to our Dynamics 365 Essentials
series to learn more about adopting specific
Dynamics 365 applications and services within your organization and for a deeper dive
on the Power Platform. Thank you for watching. (calm music) (low whooshing) (low thudding)

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

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