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Everything We Learnt at Microsoft Inspire to Help You Be a Better Microsoft Partner

16 August 2018
Written by
Microsoft Inspire is the corporation's annual Partner conference which runs over two days and helps the global Microsoft community to see what the company’s vision is for the future. Held, as it is each year, in Las Vegas, Nevada, on July 15-19, this was a big year for the Microsoft Partner community, so allow us to break down the main announcements, and explain why that will help you be a better Microsoft Dynamics Partner.
  1. Organizational and Partner changes
From Azure to, Microsoft 356 and Dynamics 365, Microsoft isn’t pulling any punches when it comes to changing up its suite of productivity tools. But Microsoft also touted a number of key updates to its Partner programs, including a key focus on helping channel partners to specialize more to help them boost productivity, as well as on accelerating the joint selling of solutions between partners and Microsoft salespeople. Microsoft now has a raft of 72,000 cloud partners generating $5bn in Partner sales. According to them, this is just the beginning. Microsoft really wants its Partners to get a bigger piece of the pie.
  1. Partner-to-Partner collaboration
AppSource is quickly becoming the “front door” for Partners selling with Microsoft, according to Garviella Schuster, corporate vice president of Microsoft's One Commercial Partner organization. Now, Microsoft is launching new marketplace capabilities aimed at helping Partners to collaborate on building new integrated solutions that they can sell, driving additional revenue. For users, this means a single deployment will likely have a greater range of capabilities, while Partners win by reaching a broader range of customers.
  1. Azure Marketplace to offer private offers
Microsoft Partners will now be able to offer specific customers special offers and discounts to enable them to better match their needs. In addition, Partners will now be able to share more bespoke solutions with customers to improve the buying experience.
  1. Business apps are expanding
Dynamics 365, Power BI and other similar business applications are going to provide free access for Partners to the Dynamics learning environment. Microsoft is also launching a four-day, in-person boot camp training for partner solution architects. The aim is to make the Microsoft ecosystem the best place to learn, ensuring for Microsoft that Partners stick with them. Meanwhile, for Partners, it means that they’ll be able to train new Dynamics professionals in the US or otherwise with greater ease. Better-trained Microsoft Dynamics professionals means better Microsoft Dynamics solutions for the Partners’ customers.
  1. Specialization
Microsoft Partners will now be able to specialize beyond the current Microsoft Gold competencies standard, helping them to differentiate. Advance specializations include Dynamics 365 for Sales, Dynamics 365 for Customer Service, and Dynamics 365 for Field Services.
  1. Azure Expert MSP
For those Partners who want to stand out even more from the pack, Microsoft is launching the Azure Expert Managed Service Provider program, (currently a pilot program). Today, there are already more than 30 carefully vetter Azure Expert MSP partners in the program, including New Signature, Capgemini, Infosys and Tata. Azure is also receiving a whole range of new technologies, including Azure Firewall, a cloud-native network security service that protects Azure Virtual Network resources, and Azure Virtual WAN, an advanced networking tool helping businesses create “hub and spoke” networks.
  1. Benefits packages for Go-to-Market
When Partners are ready to go to market with their solution, Microsoft wants to help by producing packages that help them to zero in on their target audience. These include
    • Modern Workplace, for Partners delivering services on Microsoft 365
    • Apps and Infrastructure, for Partners building and delivering services on Microsoft stack
    • Artificial Intelligence, for Partners focussing on Power BI and SQL Server
  • Business Applications, for Partners building services on Dynamics 365
As you can see, there are plenty of updates coming down the pipeline for Microsoft Dynamics Partners. Given Microsoft’s increased emphasis on Partner training, options and infrastructure, if you’re looking to bring in additional Dynamics 365 resource to your business, now could be a great time. Speak to a member of our team today.

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