It is time to talk about Microsoft release wave 1 2022 and what is coming. Microsoft published their release notes for the 1st release wave of 2022, yesterday, 25th of January and my social medias have been blowing up with the reviews 😀
Always an exciting time and so much new information that I decided to break it all up in various posts. There will be posts about the following:
- D365 Sales
- D365 Marketing
- D365 Service (Customer Service and Field Service)
- Changes to Model Driven Apps
- Customer Insights
So this is my first post about the changes coming and I will be focusing on D365 Sales.
On the first glance I can see that the overall theme is increasing access to various intelligence tools and process automation. This is news that a lot of users have been waiting for, but lets dive in deeper.
Instead of rewriting everything on the MS release notes for D365 Sales, I will bring out the ones that I see will have the biggest impact on increasing efficiency and user adoption. So here goes 🙂
Improved Intelligence solutions
Breaking down the walls between D365 Sales Insights and D365 Sales
It is important for salespeople to get the right information, in the right place at the right time. Then the chances of being successful are at its peak. Microsoft has decided to bring some of its Sales Insights functionalities directly into D365 Sales. The following features are going to be Generally Available from September 2022:
- Various strategy and coaching dashboards are made available to show where managers and sellers spend their days.
- In-app notifications and emails to make sure users don’t miss or forget their tasks and follow-ups
- Enabling comments and mentions in order to make D365 Sales a better conversational tool to keep in track of the customers.
Discover connection points from email interactions
In the Sales Insights tab of your Account record you will be able to see a “Who knows Whom” tab. In this tab you will be able to see the summary of interactions with the given customer. This includes top contacts, information about next meeting, colleagues that are or have interaction with this customer. This gives you a great indication on the current relationship with the customer an a possibility to build upon that. More info.
A major area for this release. There are a lot of functionality that will be made available, so you have the chance of being more effective.
Filter out the underlying opportunities of a forecast
Users will have access to filter controls in order to quickly filter out the relevant related Opportunities and update them. More info. (Generally Available from April 2022 and automatically released to all users)
Monitor Opportunities to identify idle deals that might affect poorly your predictive score
With adding a predictive scoring widget, users are able to monitor various deals in order to see when they were moved to the current stage and how the possible lack of activity can affect the score. Users will also have the possibility to access historical data to see how long the deal has been in all stages.
And this feature excites me a lot 😀 Great amount of users that I have been working with have been struggling with the fact that they have no standard way of following up and getting to know how long an Opportunity has been in a various stages. It has always required customization, but now it is here! More info. (Generally Available from April 2022)
Enabling rollups and inline editing for quotas
It will be possible for users to quickly make changes to quotas with the new inline editing capabilities. This way users don’t need to open records and then find their way back again, but simple changes can be made quickly. Besides making quick changes it will also be possible to automatically rollup quotas and simple columns for managers and to sum up teams performances. This saves time and effort for managers and team members as sometimes managers quotas are just a rollup sum of the teams efforts 🙂 More info. (Generally Available from April 2022)
And saving the best for the last in this section:
Possibility to see a yearly forecast and the possibility of changing between a full year and a year-to-date forecast view. 🤯
It will now be possible to see a full years view of your forecast and also compare it to year-to-date performance. This gives a great way for both management and salespeople to follow up on their forecasts.
This is also a feature that is highly requested by different companies. It will be amazing to show that it will now be available as a default in the system. More info. (Generally Available from April 2022)
Here are general improvements to the Business card scanner and also Outlook integration. So you don’t have to switch between your Outlook and D365 Sales apps. But the feature I am looking forward to test is the notes scanning option.
We all take notes. And some of you are like me and take notes with pen and paper 😀 Old-school, I know, but I have never got myself fully to take notes digitally. Just something about doing it by hand that feels nice and cozy 😀 But enough about me.
Microsoft will come with a functionality where you can take a picture of your hand-written notes and then it will digitalize it and add to D365 Sales. 🤯 Will this not make note taking easier or what? It will still remain to be seen how good the technology is at this point, but I am putting my hopes up and definitely something I will test when it comes out. More info. (General Availability September 2022)
Sales accelerator is an engagement tool available for users with a premium or an enterprise license. At the moment, it is something that your System Administrator needs to activate in order for it to be available for all users with the correct licenses. This will change with the new updates. Sales Accelerator will be made automatically available and it is coming with many new enhancements:
Removing junk leads automatically
This will be a setting your administrator needs to turn on, but when it is activated, then it will automatically scan your leads and remove the ones with wrong email addresses, obvious fictive names and incomplete data. It works with AI-based models in order to find the junk leads and delete them. This can be a huge help in keeping up the quality of your leads. And less work for you to sort out the bad apples. More info.(Generally Available June 2022)
Notifying sellers when customers are interacting with their emails
This is a functionality I am having a bit of trouble figuring out if I like it or not. It is a great feature for following up basically real-time and keeping the conversation running while the customer is still engaged. But, I also see danger of spam and too much information for the salespeople. It is a feature that system admins need to turn on, so it is possible for you to test it out and if it gets too much, then turn it off. More info.(Generally Available April 2022)
This is a lot of information and only the first post 😉 No worries, once I have made all the announcements posts, I will also dive deeper into the different functionalities especially when they are available for testing. I like to test the functionalities out before I write about them. So stay tuned for that. 🙂
Most of these changes are not visible for sales people automatically (unless stated otherwise in the feature). They are available in your system and system administrators have the access to make them available also for regular users. This gives your company the ability to create training and materials before new functionality is made available for users.
The international plan for rollout of the release wave 1 2022 changes is the following weekends:
United Arab Emirates