CRM stands for "Customer Relationship Management".  It refers to all strategies, techniques, tools, and technologies that an enterprise or business uses to develop, retain, and acquire customers. CRM makes sure that when customers interact with the business or enterprise, each step of the interaction is smooth. This, in turn, helps the business increase its overall profits.
 
The CRM software collects customer data from various channels. Therefore, it stores detailed information on overall purchase history, personal info, and even the customers' purchasing behaviour patterns.
The primary purpose of using CRM is to improve the way businesses communicate and engage in business-related activities with their customers.
 
With the right CRM solutions at your disposal, you can make your profits grow over time by streamlining the processes associated with your business's service, sales, and marketing channels. It will also allow you to focus on not only creating but also maintaining customer relationships. A powerful CRM like Microsoft Dynamics 365 is multidimensional, and it stores all the critical information needed to retain, improve, and develop customer relationships. If you don't have access to an integrated CRM, you are likely to lose revenue as well as growth opportunities as you won't have the necessary capabilities to get more out of sales leads or customer relationships and optimising processes associated with your sales, marketing, and service divisions. 
 

What is Microsoft Dynamics CRM?

Microsoft Dynamics CRM is a Customer Relationship Management software package developed by Microsoft. It helps businesses maintain and manage marketing, customer relationships, sales leads and pipeline, amongst other things. 
 
While several automated and centralised CRM solutions are available out there, not many can match the features and advantages of Microsoft Dynamics 365. So let's now discuss Microsoft CRM Dynamics and its advantages.
 
MS Dynamics 365 is a CRM solution whose entire focus is on helping organisations enhance their customer relationships. It is an out-of-the-box solution that enables businesses to optimise their sales, marketing, and service sectors. It is now also being used as a CRM-driven analytics platform by organisations across the world. 
 
MS Dynamics CRM solution helps organisations improve their marketing endeavours and productivity of their sales activities. It allows them to manage the customer service chain better and deliver business intelligence and social insights. Microsoft Dynamics CRM features are much more improved than other solutions in its category. In addition, it is mobile compatible, so its apps can be used on smartphones as well as tablets. 
 
The primary function of MS Dynamics CRM is to manage customer relationships. With MS Dynamics, you can develop an overview of customer interactions across touchpoints, including email, phone, fax, appointments, and more.
 
 
The core MS Dynamics solution is available in two different versions for business with different deployment and usage preferences. These versions are:

1. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Online

The first offering is the online version of the MS Dynamics CRM. It is a cloud-based solution that is extensively supported by Microsoft servers. So, from databases, application servers, and licensing to deployment and setup, everything is done on MS servers. The online offering is ideal for those businesses looking for a subscription-based solution and aren't willing to manage the technicalities associated with implementing a CRM. The setup takes only a few days, so you can start using the solution via a web browser in less than a week.

2. On-Premise CRM

This is a more robust offering that can be customised according to the needs of the organisation. The application and the databases are hosted on the servers of the organisation that is buying the solution. The On-premise CRM offering of MS Dynamics 365 provides complete control of your deployments, licensing, databases, backups, setups, and customisations. If you are an organisation that is looking for a CRM solution with better customisation and integration capabilities, you should choose the on-premise version of Dynamics 365 CRM. In terms of functionalities, both online and on-premise offerings are the same. The difference lies in their implementation. 
 
 
Let us now look at some of the benefits of MS Dynamics CRM. 
  • Adaptable Apps: MS Dynamics CRM comes with apps that can adapt to your business needs and those of specific sectors that you intend to use them in. Every application within Dynamics 365 is a handful on its own, but if you want to get more out of them, try using them together. You can start with an app or two and then keep adding newer ones depending on the support needed by your users. These apps can be accessed from any device, anywhere. All you need is a web browser. 
Also, many mobile apps are available to help you get the most out of Dynamics 365, even on your smartphone or tablet. The administrator tools of the CRM ensure that you are in complete control of the configuration of applications and services to meet your business needs. If you want your processes and data to create custom experiences, you can do so with the help of MS Power Platform. 
  • Improved Availability: As the Dynamics CRM runs on Azure, it has Microsoft's extensive cloud and data centres for everyone, everywhere. This is why the availability of these services is more than 99.9%. For organisations whose employees work remotely or from different locations, they can host their data and services using Dynamics CRM in data centres near your users to considerably reduce latency. What's more – Microsoft ensures complete security of your data and doesn't use it for marketing or any other purpose. 
Adding users to Dynamics CRM is super easy. The granular administration controls of MS Dynamics 365 allow you to separately define security and access groups. You can also define specific access rules for different fields to hide confidential information from the people you don't want to see it. You can encrypt fields or data using the available options as well. So you can use encryption for protecting data against illegal viewing, access, and export. 
  • Integrated Experience: One of the most common disadvantages of several computer and data services today is disjoint between their logic and data capabilities. What this disjoint does is make you build logic and data stacks that are completely unique. This makes it difficult to analyse data for different apps as well as to create integrated experiences.
Common Data Service or CDS can offer you a way out of this challenging situation. It is a cloud-scale database that can help you store all your data in a secured manner. At the same time, it will only use one set of business logic and data shapes to interact with your processes and apps. CDS understands data shapes and knows how different data types need to be stored. CDS stores images, blobs, and assets in tabular data as text strings.
  • Powerful Analytics: You have a powerful analytics and data visualisation tool at your disposal in the form of Power BI. Plus, you can also put the AI builder to work to make machine learning algorithms to improve business processes and insights. If you want to modernise the interactions between applications and business, you can do so by using mixed reality to gain insights in scenarios of the real world. For example, you can use MS Dynamics CRM guides to improve their work experience by scaling their on-the-job training. 
If you want to migrate from your existing system to Dynamics 365 and ensure that you experience maximum benefits out of this migration, you need to find yourself a technology partner that can help you adapt services and applications that are specific to your business. Your selection of a technology partner should ultimately depend on its capabilities of making this business transformation as simple as possible. 
 
 
Armin Vans
Avni Singh has a PhD in Machine Learning and is an Artificial Intelligence developer, researcher, practitioner, and educator as well as an Open Source Software developer, with over 7 years in the industry.

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