Just a few months ago we announced the launch of Dynamics 365 , a major step forward in Business Applications, and ever since it has been very rewarding to hear feedback as Australian organisations share with us how they are leveraging Microsoft to drive their digital transformation.
In our conversations with customers they talk about improving customer experiences such that customers can engage through a variety of channels in the place or time of their choosing, empowering workers with information and tools to perform their jobs better, about analysing data so employees can be more efficient and leaders can be more decisive, better able to respond when a new competitor emerges or opportunity arises.
They’re looking for efficiency, productivity, closer relationships with customers, and the confidence that their technology partner has a long term vision to deliver capabilities as their needs evolve.
For example, City Beach wants to delight its customers when they visit a shop or the online site – it also wants to be efficient and smart – retail fashion can be cut-throat competitive. It manages 60,000 products and adds 300-400 new lines each week and has moved over to Dynamics 365 to support staff, engage with customers and drive efficiencies.
Sodexo , is a global facilities management giant, and it’s using Azure, Dynamics 365, IoT (Internet of Things) and advanced analytics to reap tens of millions of dollars of savings through efficiency gains. Its staff have anywhere/anytime access to information and Sodexo Leadership has complete transparency about how the organisation is performing and visibility on where there are opportunities for improve performance.
Critically Sodexo is also using the solution to help reform and optimise its business model, delivering huge benefits and efficiencies for its clients.
These Australian organisations are responding because they recognise that traditional technology options have had mixed results, especially when factoring both the scale of the investments that have been required to maintain those systems, and the inevitable reality that over time many technology investments devolve into expensive legacy systems that become blockers of innovation vs. drivers of innovation as originally intended.
Microsoft’s strategy of a single cloud across all of our products, with a common code base & data model, removes much of the customer risk by delivering unmatched flexibility and removing costly and complex integrations. It also allows customers to benefit from the continued investments Microsoft makes in Office 365, Dynamics 365, Cortana Intelligence (including Analytics, IoT, and Artificial Intelligence) and Azure.
These organisations recognise that providing customers with easy access to meaningful and valuable information will foster greater loyalty, reduce customer service costs, and ultimately ensure that those same customers become more profitable as they buy more over time. They understand the value of an empowered worker who has the right tools and information at the right time. They are aware that business processes can be streamlined to benefit everyone – manager, employee, customer, and shareholder.
The conversations are all about the same thing – doing things better, smarter.
That’s what Microsoft’s job is – to work with organisations and our partners to do things better and smarter. Dynamics 365, Office 365, and Cortana Intelligence running on the Azure cloud are designed precisely for that purpose.
And the power of the platform allows our customers to continually benefit from both the enormous R&D investments and our acquisitions, including recent additions Field Service and LinkedIn. As a result it is common for clients to start small – Dynamics 365 for customer relationship management, but over time they start rolling out business analytics, artificial intelligence, bots, Internet of Things, when the timing makes sense for their business.
Another shift has been the focus of the customer. They are not interested in a list of all the features, functions and gizmos. Instead they want a technology partner to help build customer value, support staff, inform management and most importantly deliver outcomes.
Let me give you another example: Queensland’s Connected Care programme looks after the health needs of 1,070 children with complex or chronic conditions. I cannot think of a more important organisation – helping them perform their vital role is part of what we do.
Dynamics 365 underpins a care management platform that efficiently links a steadily rising stream of children with benefits wherever they are based, it streamlines families’ interaction with Providers, and provides the sort of information insights that allow the success of treatments to be regularly assessed and the programme to be continually evolved.
Listen carefully and you can hear the wheels of transformation in action.