Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

Microsoft Dynamics Partner Events, Information and Tips

January, 2012

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  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics Salary Survey 2012

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    Once again, Nigel Frank International is conducting their annual Microsoft Dynamics salary survey. Complete the survey and gain access to the complete compiled results. With the demand for Microsoft Dynamics technical and non-technical professional very high, this is a great time to share your input and receive insight into the latest industry trends.

    About the Microsoft Dynamics Salary Survey

    The Microsoft Dynamics Salary Survey has been conducted for the past 3 years in its current form and receives over 6,000 responses each year. The annual Microsoft Dynamics Salary Survey report is highly revered by Microsoft Dynamics professionals as it provides them with the most in-depth insight into the salaries, opinions and demographics of their counterparts worldwide. This year’s report is to be revealed for the first time at Convergence 2012.

    To take the short survey, click here.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Outbound Marketing Web Seminar Series for Microsoft Dynamics Partners

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    Last month our Marketing Monarch web seminar series focused on the Fundamentals of Inbound Marketing. This month will shift our attention to… yeah, you guessed it, outbound marketing!

    Please join Barbara Pfeiffer from Nurture Institute as she covers the following topics.

    Part 1 – Tuesday, January 10, 2012 at 11:00AM PT

    We’ll review outbound marketing as a strategy and the keys to success. We’ll then drill down into the do’s and don’ts (and pros and cons) of outbound tactics including direct mail (and dimensional mail), email and telesales.

    Part 2 – Tuesday, January 17, 2012 at 11:00AM PT

    We’ll continue our drill down on outbound marketing tactics with a focus on nurture marketing (for prospects and customers); referral marketing and community marketing.

    Part 3 – Tuesday, January 24, 2012 at 11:00AM PT

    In our final webinar in the fundamentals series, we’ll focus on tactics, templates and ideas for building a powerful marketing plan. We’ll look at different models – inbound, outbound and integrated, as well as different budgeting options

    Register for the 3-part web seminar series through the Partner Learning Center.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Pricing & Licensing Wave II Training Web Seminar

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    Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 pricing and licensing was announced at Worldwide Partner Conference 2011 as Business Value Licensing. There are a variety of partner readiness materials on PartnerSource, and to complement those resources we have scheduled a partner web seminar next week on January 19 at 9:00AM PT. Due to inclement weather in the Seattle, WA area, this call has been postponed until Friday, February 3 at 9:00AM PT.

    The purpose of this session is to continue your immersion into Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Pricing and Licensing, and provide you with a detailed understanding of some tools that have been created to make scoping easier. In addition we will review the current License Terms and deepen your current knowledge of the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Licensing. Session highlights:

    • Refresher: Overview New Pricing Model and License types
    • New License Scoping Tool and Guidance
    • Simplification of Software License terms
    • Guidance to license partner/customer IP
    • Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 and SPLA
    • Tips and hints for the new Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 licensing

    Register for this event on the Partner Learning Center.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Visit Fargo for Four Weeks and Get on the Fast TrAX with Microsoft Dynamics AX

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    “Welcome to the team”, the new Microsoft Dynamics consultant was told by his manager the first day on the job. “This week you’ll go through an onboarding process with various individuals within the organization, and next week you are off to Fargo, North Dakota to attend a four-week training course,” the manager continued. “What?! Fargo for four weeks? Really?!” exclaimed the consultant. “Yes. Fargo. They have a great thing happening up there with the Microsoft Dynamics AX Fast TrAX training. I’m confident you’ll find it extremely valuable and rewarding to your career development,” explained the manager.

    Yes, this is reality folks. But don’t take my words lightly. The Microsoft Dynamics Fast TrAX training held its inaugural classes in the second half of calendar 2011, and there are dozens of Fast TrAX graduates already sharing tremendous feedback…

    Taking the Fast TrAX course sets aside a portion of your life, you learn Microsoft Dynamics AX. When else are you going to have four weeks of your life set aside for this purpose? Not all teachers are from Microsoft but they bring in, in this course, both Microsoft and non-Microsoft teachers who are fluent with the product. They bring in Microsoft people who have been involved in the development of the product and development of the documentation as well as people who have worked with the product since the early beta versions or even earlier. Our class received both overviews and substantial details of Microsoft Dynamics AX. We saw it from an overview point of view and significant details on finance and supply chain. We also learned support material related to Sure Step, SharePoint and Enterprise Portal intelligence. Every person on the planet is unique. We learned in different ways, so there’s different ways to take notes, and do your homework during evenings and weekends. The class time, make full use of the immersion experience and time. October 2011 Graduate

    I think a lot of the professors or instructors that we’ve had here have worked in the industry for a number of years so they provided some good life lessons, some good experiences that they’ve run into with partners or clients. You are just completely immersed in it, so there’s no way around it. You are going to learn Microsoft Dynamics AX. And that is what we’re all here to do and I just think it’s a very, very good opportunity for people to try and take advantage of. – August 2011 Graduate

    I think one advantage is that it’s a technology platform and a skillset that’s transferable. It’s not just geared towards one industry. When you learn it, every company, every organization, public or private, is going to have transactions, is going to have sales, is going to be hiring people. So it’s definitely a skillset that can transfer across industries. It’s really the wide variety of individuals and peers that we have in there. We’ve got individuals you have been in the ERP world, not necessarily within Microsoft systems, but in the ERP world for a while then we’ve got fresh out of college and a lot of people right in the middle who have just been working for a while. Hearing their experiences and their sort of viewpoint on what they think they will be able to do with this system has been beneficial. We always hear that the Microsoft Dynamics community is really small so being able to build that camaraderie is a plus. From having no previous experience whatsoever, I think the immersion concept is good. I keep sitting back after going to the hotel room and thinking would I have read all eight of these manuals on my free time in addition to my job, on the weekends, 10 hours, whatever. And I would, I would be committed to it. But you’re not going to get the experiences of seeing the trainer troubleshoot the system and how they would go about troubleshooting. I think is a positive facet to this sort of training program, especially for those without any experience. – August 2011 Graduate

    The class has been very different from what I thought it was going to be. I was really worried about coming up to Fargo and Microsoft being this huge entity. It’s really just felt warm and everybody was so welcoming. We’ve met about 15 different instructors from Microsoft and they’ve all been very open to our questions. The technology, it was a fast pace, but you’re able to learn it. There’s enough written material I can go back and study. I’m definitely preparing for my exams and getting ready to be certified but I know that when I go out into the field after I’ve had this class that I can confidently present to my clients here’s the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 product and here’s what it can do for your business. – September 2011 Graduate

    If you are interested in Microsoft Dynamics Fast TrAX training, we’ve recently published our FY12 H2 training schedule for partners based in the United States. And since you are visiting the place where I reside (Fargo), I’ll definitely take the opportunity to pop into your class to say hello!

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Sales and Presales Industry Summit

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    To bring you up to speed with the Microsoft Dynamics AX industry solutions, and to enable you to professionally sell and deploy these industry solutions, we’re pleased to announce our first Industry Summit designed for sales and pre sales professionals.

    This training will dive deeper into the core areas of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 and how to leverage the demo tools and pillars; Powerful, Agile, Simple in showcasing this solution. We will then extend the core into our five key industries; Manufacturing, CPG & Distribution, Professional Services, Retail, and Public Sector and give you the basis and understanding of how to present and demonstrate the Microsoft Dynamics AX solution in that industry and learn about the ISV partner solutions that make up the industry ecosystems.

    By attending this course, you will learn to:

    • Drive a deeper understanding of how to leverage the demo tools and showcase the solution.
    • Enable the sales and pre sales individuals to learn the Industry and language of industry.
    • Empower the partners to execute sales cycles and demonstrate flawlessly in order to increase our win rate.
    • Learn about the ecosystems surrounding the verticals you have chosen to target.

    When: February 13, 2012 starting at 8:00AM through February 16, 2012 ending at 5:00PM

    Where: Jacksonville, FL Crowne Plaza Hotel

    Visit PartnerSource for more background information, and register for the training via the Partner Learning Center.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics AX Exam Clean Slate Sweepstakes

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    Let's start off the 2012 new year with an awesome incentive for you to ready yourself with Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 courtesy of the United States partner readiness team.

    Take one of four Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 technical certification exams for a chance to be entered into a drawing to win one of two Samsung Series 7 Slate OR one of ten Limited Edition Star Wars Xboxes. This Sweepstakes starts on January 1, 2012, and ends on March 15, 2012.

    Eligible exams include:

    • Exam MB6-869 Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Development Introduction
    • Exam MB6-870 Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Trade and Logistics
    • Exam MB6-871 Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Financials
    • Exam MB6-872 Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Installation and Configuration

    Visit PartnerSource for Official Rules.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Online Project Wizard Available

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    Our Microsoft Dynamics development team is happy to announce the availability of the Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Online Project Wizard. According to the team…

    Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Online Project Wizard enables the ability to create specific Sure Step projects in a partner or customer’s SharePoint environment all from within their own SharePoint environment. In Sure Step, projects are a collection of documents, tools, and templates that are automatically generated based upon filtering criteria selected. When creating a new project, Sure Step Online will retrieve the latest Sure Step content ensuring projects are always up to date.

    I’ve heard a lot of positive feedback regarding Sure Step Online, so visit PartnerSource to learn more!

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    CRM Partner itara Generates 70% of New Business through Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace

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    A Blog Series for Microsoft Dynamics Partners by Christian Lindberg, Solution Sales & Marketing, Microsoft Dynamics Partner Team.

    In building its business, German Microsoft partner itara has committed to a marketing strategy that relies extensively on making the best possible use of the Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace. More than 70 percent of itara’s prospective customers find out about the company’s solution, CRM-Project, through its Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace listing. CRM-Project, the 4th module for Microsoft Dynamics CRM, extends the solution’s sales, marketing, and customer service capabilities with richly featured project management functionality. Currently, the solution has the top ranking on the U.S. and several other country sites. After reviewing the Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace listing with a thorough overview of the solution, customers and Microsoft Dynamics partners interested in building a business relationship predicated on CRM-Project can visit the CRM-Project site to learn more, download a trial version of the solution, or purchase it.

    Managing Director Bernd Lachner says, “The Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace is the most cost-effective marketing channel we have. Our marketing team dedicates the equivalent of one full-time employee’s time to managing the listings on the Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace sites, and the payback on that is simply enormous. Since April 2011, we’ve gone from an average of 2 inquiries a day to 10 or more.” Reviews and ratings are critical in the Microsoft Dynamics Marketplace strategy to support CRM-Project. Lachner explains, “A key element of that is our consistent, successful engagement with our partners and customers. We ask all of our customers and partners to review and rate our solution as soon as they have had a chance to test the solution or have signed a contract with us.” In addition, itara is meticulous in managing details of the solution listing. The company’s marketing writers ensure search engine optimization for all languages the listing and the solution site appear in.

    CRM-Project is Certified for Microsoft Dynamics. “For customers, certification of the solution means it is credible and sound,” says Lachner. “Without certification, we would not see anywhere near the level of response we are experiencing today. The certification also helps us to achieve good visibility with the Microsoft field and potential business partners.”

    Read the full story: http://bit.ly/w34rK8

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Starting 2012 Strong for Microsoft Dynamics ERP Volume

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    Special guest blogger, Kristi Hofer, Microsoft Dynamics US Channel Manager, provides this update on the Microsoft Dynamics ERP volume business focused on the small and medium-sized business market.

    SMB Prospect Engagement:  Grow Your Business

    On January 3, we brought in the New Year in the ERP Volume business by launching Phase 2 of our prospect-facing Grow Your Business site. To recap, the initial Grow Your Business launch in late September represented the first step in a multi-year strategy to drive US prospects to a business-value-centric online experience that ultimately gives them the opportunity to attend a relevant webinar, sign up for a Test Drive, or engage with a Chat representative. Phase 2 introduces engaging industry content that helps us not only demonstrate the industry capability for our Volume ERP products but does so in the context of a business conversation with real customers who have implemented solutions who are growing the business today as a result. We have seen great momentum in terms of traffic, prospects, and opportunities generated from the Grow Your Business site, with all opportunities going directly to our partners to drive SMB growth.

    SMB Prospect Offer:  Give me 5

    The increased awareness we’re gaining through initiatives like Grow Your Business combined with the aggressive Give me 5 offer that runs through the end of June 22, 2012 should help us continue to gain traction with the SMB customer segment. Since the Give me 5 offer launched on October 3, we’ve seen extremely high uptake and expect to see this continue/grow in the second half of the year. If you haven’t already integrated this offer into your marketing plan, check out the variety of materials available on the Give me 5 PartnerSource page and consider where they would best fit within your existing efforts.

    SMB Partner Incentive:  Give me 5

    To reward partners for driving SMB results, we also launched a substantial Partner Incentive that also ends on June 22, 2012. This partner incentive is available to all Microsoft Dynamics partners who drive 20+ qualifying customer adds from October 3, 2011 – June 22, 2012, with a payout of $25k – $60k paid in the form of a partner rebate based on performance. Many partners have made great traction towards this goal already, so we’re hoping we can reward this to many partners by the end of June!  We will be launching a partner-facing portal to track qualifying adds and your status against the incentive shortly, so stay tuned!

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Retailers to Enhance Customer Experience with Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 for Retail

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    Last month, I provided information on how partners can actively engage in the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 for Retail release by reviewing the content found on the US Launch Portal. Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 for Retail will be available in more than 25 countries starting Feb. 1, 2012.

    NEW YORK — Jan. 16, 2012 — At the National Retail Federation’s annual conference today, Microsoft Corp. announced the upcoming release of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 for Retail, which will provide midsize and enterprise retailers with an end-to-end solution that includes cross-channel capabilities, social and mobile commerce, enriched point of sale (POS), and powerful enhancements for merchandising. These capabilities are designed to help retailers deliver uniquely consistent, convenient and personalized experiences for shoppers.

    Access the complete press release by visiting the Microsoft News Center.

    --Kevin

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