Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

Microsoft Dynamics Partner Events, Information and Tips

November, 2011

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step 2012 Launched


    Our development team shares this update regarding the continuous updates delivered to the Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step methodology. I continue to hear nothing but great comments about the latest content and services provided in this methodology whenever I casually bump into a Sure Step developer on the Microsoft Fargo Campus. As mentioned via the PartnerSource announcement:

    We are excited to announce the availability of Sure Step 2012! The primary focus is guidance for the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 release and new content for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 On-premises and Online. Updated content includes:

    • Accelerated Proof of Concept with CRM Online service – Provides scripts, demos, Delivery Guide, and related content for building a quick proof of concept or demo for a customer using the CRM Online 30-day trial. This supports rapid requirements definition and solution decision-making. Find this in the Decision Accelerator offering.
    • Upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 – tools and templates to support the Upgrade project type, reflecting an Microsoft Dynamics AX 2009 to Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 upgrade scenario.
    • Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Implementation tools and templates are updated to reflect an Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 implementation scenario, including Fit/Gap analysis worksheet, estimator tool, requirements questionnaire, security configuration requirements template, and other valuable templates.
    • Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Updates – new CRM artifacts including Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Upgrade Assessment, Database Sizing Tool, and Design Best Practices.
    • Sure Step Optimization Offering – These services have been repackaged across all products to represent either discrete stand-alone services such as Developer Workshop or bundled services available to customers, such as Architecture Review, Project Governance and Delivery Review, and Upgrade Review.

    Download Sure Step 2012 or use the Sure Step Online version for the latest tools, templates, and content. Find complete details on PartnerSource.


  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Master VARs Selected to Fuel Growth for Microsoft Dynamics Resellers


    We are excited to welcome SBS Group, Socius and Tribridge to the Microsoft Dynamics Master VAR program. These three partners best exemplify the qualities we are looking for in Master VARs. Each has a strong reputation within the Microsoft Dynamics ERP channel, a proven ability to drive growth and a commitment to the small and medium sized business (SMB) customer segment.

    But what truly separates these partners from a very competitive group of applicants to this program is their ability – and desire – to deliver value to their Sales Affiliates. SBS, Socius and Tribridge have all been involved in various alliances and partnership programs long before the Master VAR program was even conceived. They have collaboration in their DNA. This gives us confidence that they have what it takes to create win-win relationships within the Microsoft Dynamics ERP channel.

    Early Feedback

    Jeff Edwards 2009 01After formally announcing the Master VAR program in September, we had the opportunity to gather feedback from numerous partners. Many partners expressed a great deal of interest in the program and have been looking forward to starting conversations with Master VARs.

    However, in the course of gathering this feedback, it became clear that there are a few common misconceptions about the Master VAR program that we’d like to address.

    We have heard concerns that the selection of the Master VARs favored large partners at the expense of smaller partners. Although Master VARs are required to meet minimum revenue and operating capital requirements, the intention was not to preclude smaller partners from participating, but instead to ensure that Master VARs have the financial resources to invest in the success of their Sales Affiliates. The Master VAR program is designed to help smaller partners achieve their business goals, and we conducted an evaluation process to find Master VARs that have the resources required to achieve that objective.

    In addition, contrary to some rumors, aligning with a Master VAR is in no way mandatory. No partners will be forced to participate in the Master VAR program. The Master VAR program was introduced to provide greater choice for our Microsoft Dynamics ERP partners. We will continue to do everything we can to support partners focused on growth, whether they want to grow organically or explore an alternative option such as affiliation with a Master VAR.

    Next steps

    We strongly encourage Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Microsoft Dynamics SL partners interested in learning more about these Master VARs to reach out to them directly – contact information is below and on PartnerSource. For partners that would prefer to weigh their options before initiating discussions with a Master VAR, we have briefed a number of third-party consultants on the program and have posted their contact information on PartnerSource as well.

    Additionally, we are hosting a webinar on November 18, 2011 at 10:00 AM PST to provide our partners the opportunity to hear from these Master VARs directly. Each will provide an overview of their company and specific details about their unique program, including their value proposition to Sales Affiliates, their targeted Sales Affiliate profile, and how to begin working together. You can register for this webcast by clicking here (must be a current Microsoft Dynamics partner to access).

    For many of our partners, we believe the Master VAR program will provide a welcome and accessible path to growth. SBS, Socius and Tribridge are uniquely positioned to help those partners grow.

    SBS Group:

    If you have additional questions, please email:

    Jeff Edwards
    Director of Channel Strategy, Microsoft Business Solutions
    Microsoft Corporation

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Virtual Image Including Public Sector is Now Available for Download


    This new image includes the latest functions for Public Sector in Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012. And seven demo scripts are available to help you showcase the capabilities in Finance, Procurement, user experience, etc.

    Visit PartnerSource to download the materials.


  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    RapidStart Services for Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 – Partner Web Seminar


    As we head into a new week, our Microsoft Dynamics partner readiness team highlights this upcoming training opportunity for partners focused on Microsoft Dynamics AX.

    RapidStart Services is a configuration and setup cloud service from Microsoft that allows a fast and easy way to configure and deploy Microsoft Dynamics AX business processes and scenarios. The core benefits for you as our partner would be:

    • Fast / easy setup of demos and proof of Concepts
    • Repeatable and reusable templates allowing differentiation
    • Better collaboration with customers
    • Structured approach to implementation process
    • Allows Senior Consultants to focus on high-value adds
    • Allows Junior Consultants to go further and learn

    This training takes place on Tuesday, November 29 at 11:00AM PT. Register today on the Partner Learning Center.

    Find more information regarding RapidStart Services for Microsoft Dynamics AX on PartnerSource.


  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Announcing the 2012 President’s Club and Inner Circle for Microsoft Dynamics Programs


    The 2012 Partner Recognition Program for Microsoft Dynamics recognizes our top Microsoft Dynamics partners for their exceptional FY12 performance.

    To achieve 2012 President’s Club for Microsoft Dynamics, partners must demonstrate a strong combination of revenue or customer adds, plus license growth.

    A small number of strategic partners from across the globe will be invited to be part of the 2012 Inner Circle for Microsoft Dynamics based on their stellar sales performance in FY12. Partners will qualify to be considered for Inner Circle based on performance and those who have demonstrated consistent business leadership and strategic impact on the growth and success of the Dynamics business.

    In addition to reaching the business milestones, all Microsoft Dynamics President’s Club and Inner Circle partners must have an active MBS service plan (except non selling ISV and CRM online only partners) and an active MBS or ISV competency to qualify.

    Review complete qualification criteria on PartnerSource.


  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Convergence 2012 Registration Now Open!


    We are very excited to announce the opening of registration for the extremely popular annual Microsoft Dynamics conference – Convergence! All Convergence 2012 sessions and activities will take place at the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston, TX during March 18-21, 2012.

    The Convergence events team provides these great details below.

    Register Now! Take Advantage of the Early-Registration Discount!

    Early registration is now open and if you and your customers register before January 26, 2012, you will save US$300 per person off the regular registration fee!

    The earlier you and your customers register, the easier it is for you to plan for the event. By informing your customers about this special pricing offer, you are adding value by helping make this a more cost-effective event for them, which helps build relationships and customer satisfaction.

    We’ve made it easy to generate customer excitement for Convergence 2012 with customizable marketing materials and resources available for download now on PartnerSource.

    "Our customers tell us that Convergence is the venue where they learn from their peers and get inspired to achieve greater business success. Convergence is a unique event that offers customers the ability to network with like companies and with product team members, and to spend ample amounts of time with their partner redefining what’s next for their business." —Ryan Toenies, Sonoma Partners

    Register now and get your customers to attend with you!

    Why Attend Convergence 2012 Houston?

    • Increase your revenue and customer satisfaction.
    • Strengthen connections with your customers.
    • Network with peers, your customers, and Microsoft experts.
    • Learn about the Microsoft strategy and future plans for Microsoft Dynamics.

    Be sure to follow #CONV12 on Twitter to stay up to speed on the latest Convergence 2012 announcements!


  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics ERP FY12 Holiday Season User Offer


    Our United States existing customer marketing team provides this update regarding a recently announced promotion.

    Now is a great time to connect with your customers and talk to them about expanding their ERP solution with this special "Microsoft Dynamics ERP Holiday Season User Offer". From November 1, 2011 through the end of the business day December 22, 2011 existing Microsoft Dynamics customers can purchase additional user or module licenses for up to 20% off of the standard price list for their current Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics SL or Microsoft Dynamics NAV solution. This offer is available only to customers in the U.S and Canada.

    What’s more, they only have to purchase a minimum of 2 licenses to be eligible for the discount and the discount can be applied on up to a total of 20 user or module license purchases.

    For complete offer conditions visit PartnerSource.


    11/3/2011 Edit - Please note, the offer does not include module license purchases. Updated terms & conditions are located on PartnerSource.

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q4 2011 Service Update Partner Training Blitz Day


    Our partner readiness team has put together this great training opportunity for partners looking to ramp up on the latest Microsoft Dynamics CRM release!

    The November 2011 service update brings integrated social collaboration capabilities to customers and moves towards a unified Microsoft Office 365 experience and enhancements for enterprises using Microsoft Dynamics CRM in the cloud. With this update, we begin delivering waves of innovation to customers on a six month release schedule. These new features were delivered at no additional cost to existing customers. Today, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online and Office 365 provide a seamless experience for end users. With the November 2011 service update, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online will begin to simplify cloud service management by offering a common administration, billing and provisioning platform with Office 365 to enterprise customers on the Microsoft Office 365 portal. This initial wave in the move to a unified Office 365 platform makes a number of technical and administrative benefits available to enterprise customers.

    Education of our partners is a key component to a successful launch and with this launch we are bringing you readiness your way! Either attend the available web sessions on demand today OR join us December 14 from 9:30AM to 4:00PM Pacific for a Partner Training Blitz Day focused on sales & technical roles within your organization- leveraging the same titles but augmenting with Microsoft online Q&A. This will be a great benefit for your organization to build their skillsets around this release and have your questions answered by Microsoft Experts!

    Register Today!


    • Welcome
    • Q4 2011 Release Update and Roadmap
    • Online Services Delivery Platform for Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online: Transitioning to a Unified Experience for Customers and Partners
    • Building your Business Hub: Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Social Technologies
    • Telling the Microsoft Dynamics CRM BDM Story
    • Telling the Microsoft Dynamics CRM TDM Story
    • Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q4 2011 Service Update Activity Feeds and CRM Mobile New Features
    • Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q4 2011 Service Update New Features Outlook Client and Data Management

    Find additional resources regarding the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Q4 2011 Service Update on PartnerSource.

    12/20/2011 UPDATE - If you missed the live event, you can now access the on demand recordings through PartnerSource.


  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Extended Demo Data Now Available for Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2009 R2


    Microsoft is very happy to announce that new and Extended Demo Data are now available for Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2009 R2. Partners have often requested better and more extensive demo data for Microsoft Dynamics NAV. Microsoft is excited to respond to this request by delivering Extended Demo Data. This will help you do better pre-sales demonstrations for multiple scenarios. With the extended demo databases it is possible to show real Business Intelligence scenarios as the demo data simulates the growth of Cronus International over 5 years.

    The Extended Demo Data can be integrated to the US image found on PartnerSource, and you will find the Extended Demo Data on the Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2009 R2 Download page.


  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    FY12 Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online Ad Campaign – "Don't Get Forced" (2.0) Launched


    Our worldwide Microsoft Dynamics marketing team passes along this news regarding the recent launch of the "Don’t Get Forced" 2.0 campaign on November 1, 2011.

    Targeted at enterprise organizations (250+ PCs), the FY12 advertising campaign launched on Nov. 1, 2011 in the United States and will run through June 2012 with the goal of closing the awareness gap between Microsoft Dynamics CRM and via competitive positioning.

    The campaign kicks off with a series of vides highlighting competitive shortcomings. Additionally, the media plan will drive interest through interaction through mobile devices and social sites as well as through multiple digital properties and print publications.

    Get familiar with the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online campaign and talk with your customers about their CRM initiatives.

    Use the Through Partner assets, based on the FY11 creative platform, available now on PartnerSource. These assets will be updated to reflect the new creative platform in December.


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