Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

Microsoft Dynamics Partner Events, Information and Tips

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  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    2011 Sales and Presales Assessments for Microsoft Dynamics ERP and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Now Available

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    Many partners are continuing to gear up on their Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) requirements – especially around training and certification. Stay connected to the latest resources today.

    The Microsoft Dynamics Partner Academy assessments for sales and presales roles have been updated to reflect the launch of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 as well as the launch of new Microsoft Dynamics ERP and CRM business scenarios. Take time today to review the recommended courses for exam preparation and build your training plan—note that the instructor-led courses have limited availability with no courses offered in May and June. You can also leverage the updated 2011 study guides as you prepare for and take the exams. Find more information on PartnerSource.

    Ask the Experts: MPN Study Hall Series

    Join us for sixty minute study hall sessions for Sure Step, 2win, and Solution Selling that have been created to align core curriculum that comprises the sales and presales exams, but is intended as a high-level review for individuals who have already completed the courses. Participants will also have the opportunity to ask the subject matter experts questions in areas that they may be struggling to apply concepts or areas of weakness on the exam.

    One study hall will be offered for each course and these will not be recorded nor repeated so sign up today!

    Click on the title to register or learn more.

    As always, good luck with your exams!

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    REGISTER TODAY: eXtreme CRM 2012 Las Vegas. Early Bird Pricing ends July 31

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    Special guest blog contributed by Connor Marsden, Director of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, US Microsoft Dynamics.

    Connor Marsden headshotWith so many exciting, announcements around Microsoft Dynamics CRM – including an updated product roadmap – it can be challenging to fully understand what it all means to you. As always, the Community is a great resource. Another great resource – and one not to be missed – is eXtremeCRM 2012 Las Vegas coming up September 30 – October 3 in Las Vegas.

    Like never before, Microsoft Dynamics will make a BIG splash at eXtreme CRM 2012. As a corporate sponsor, eXtremeCRM will be our #1 platform to share the latest Microsoft Dynamics CRM strategies and investments with our partners.

    NOW is the time to REGISTER for this marquee event. Early bird pricing—a $300 savings—ends July 31, 2012.

    There is something for everyone!  You won’t see it anywhere else…

    • Keynote addresses from:
      • Paul Greenberg, CRM industry Analyst, Influencer, Best Selling Author, and Blogger
      • Seth Patton, Senior Director Microsoft Dynamics CRM Product Marketing
      • Bill Patterson, Director, Dynamics CRM Strategy & Planning
      • Connor Marsden, Director, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, US
    • An entire track of presentations and interactive discussion dedicated to our priority industries
    • An all NEW! eXecutive Summit designed specifically for business owners and executive leaders which will include roundtable discussion hosted by our Dynamics CRM leadership team
    • Over 60 interactive concurrent sessions, 20 of which will be delivered by our own product marketing, and development experts. You’ll find specific tracks dedicated to leaders, sales, implementers and developers.
    • The all new Apps Challenge, where Developers increase their skills using the rapid application development environment of Microsoft Dynamics CRM while competing in teams to create the most compelling app!


    You won’t want to miss hearing about our latest strategies and investments Microsoft Dynamics CRM is making to win the hearts and minds of customers across sales, marketing and customer service. Come to extremeCRM to arm yourself with the tools you need to sell the value of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, both now and in the future.

    This is a go-to industry event that shouldn’t be missed. Early bird registration ends Tuesday, July 31. To save $300, register today!

    Connor Marsden
    Director of Microsoft Dynamics CRM
    US Microsoft Dynamics

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    New FY12 Offers Available for New & Existing Microsoft Dynamics ERP Customers

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    Over the last two years, we’ve worked closely with many of you to launch game changing offers that have proven to aggressively increase our presence in the market place and revenue with great results for both Microsoft and Microsoft Dynamics partners.

    Based on extensive partner feedback, we are now pleased to announce two new game-changing offers that seek to aggressively reinvigorate ERP new business growth (Give me 5 Offer) and enable partners to drive additional license revenue by unlocking the power of Business Ready Licensing (BRL) to their Module Based Licensing (MBL) existing customers (LMT Offer). Additionally, Microsoft is also launching a substantial partner incentive to ensure we are rewarding partners for driving results. 

    Please refer to PartnerSource links below for full details and the complete terms and conditions for each of the offers, however, below are a few quick details and actions you can take right away.

    New Customer Volume ERP FY12 SMB Offer – ‘Give Me 5’

    What’s the Offer?

    • Five Users for $3000 (Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics SL; Advanced Management or Business Essentials)
    • Available October 3, 2011 – June 22, 2012
    • Standard 1-yr BREP required (at 5-user list price)
    • For new customers not having previously licensed a Microsoft Dynamics ERP product
    • Once per customer
    • Additional details on this offer may be found on PartnerSource

    What’s New with this Offer?

    • Available for 9 months, which will enable partners to leverage the offer in marketing activities
    • Substantial partner incentive available to reward partners for driving volume in SMB

    Why this Offer?

    • Reinvigorate ERP new business growth and drive partner productivity
    • 3for$1 and Buy 1 Get 3 proved aggressive offers drive market share
    • Partner feedback themes:
      • Consistency across products
      • Offer Simplicity
      • Help partners compete in every deal and close deals quickly
      • Make offers available longer to give partners a chance to integrate them into their activities

    What’s the Partner Incentive?

    • Substantial incentive for partners to drive SMB Volume results
    • Available based on qualifying customer adds first licensed October 3, 2011 – June 22, 2012
    • Paid by end of August 2012 in form of a rebate check based on qualifying SMB customer adds:
      • 20-29 Adds: $25K
      • 30-39 Adds: $35K
      • 40-49 Adds: $45K
      • 50+ Adds: $60K
    • To help us drive results in time for midyear, there is also a FY12 Q2 Kicker Rebate: $5K for partners who drive 10+ qualifying customer adds with the offer during FY12 Q2 (December 2011) as long as those partners also get to 20+ qualifying customer adds by the end of the campaign term.

    Please see the full details for the offer and the partner incentive on PartnerSource.

    Existing Customer Volume ERP FY12 Offer – ‘LMT Offer’

    What’s the Offer

    • MBL transition to BRL for discounted License Model Transition (LMT) fees (Microsoft Dynamics GP,  Microsoft Dynamics SL, Microsoft Dynamics NAV):
      • $500 per user (no minimum) 
      • $25K maximum  <200 users
      • >200 users - contact your Partner Account Manager (PAM)
    • Valid October 1, 2011 – December 22, 2011
    • Some limitations apply; please see the full offer details on PartnerSource.

    Why this Offer?

    • Will greatly increase % of customers on Business Ready Licensing
    • Remove the LMT $10k minimum barrier for smaller customers & cost for customers with high user counts
    • Invigorate ERP existing customer license growth, drive partner and customer engagement

    Partner Benefits

    • Existing customer (EC) license growth will count towards all up Microsoft Partner Network license targets
    • Services revenue
    • Customers who do an LMT tend to spend more in subsequent years following leading to stickier and more satisfied customers

    Top Things Partners Can Do Right Away:

    1. Learn more about the offers by reviewing the PartnerSource links and by checking out the Give Me 5 and Grow Your Business customer sites (Note: Customer sites updated by 10/7/2011); Additional communications around the LMT offer from the EC Partner Update will be sent commencing October 3 with details on EC webcasts, customer communications and collateral.
    2. Connect with stalled prospects. Proactively reach out to your list of prospects who have put off buying decisions.  Offers this significant may be the compelling event that gets them over the edge.
    3. Include the offers in your marketing activities and consider new marketing activities. Be sure to integrate the offers into all of your communication mediums to help stir up excitement, including your social media channels. A Partner Offer Marketing Guide will be available in PartnerSource by October 12.
    4. Attend the October Road to Repeatability Rally Group, which will focus on offers & marketing.
    5. Attend Interactive MicroSessions (IMS) being held in October.

    NOTE: When placing orders made under these offers, be sure to include the appropriate Promo Code in the Notes field for tracking:

    • For the FY12 ERP SMB Offer – ‘Give Me 5’, use Promo Code 1577
    • For the LMT Offer, user Promo Code 1575

    To Promote the Offers We’re Also Doing The Following:

    • Creating a customer-facing offer launch portal (for Give Me 5)
    • Incorporating the offers into our social media channels
    • Driving aggressive to-customer/to-prospect demand gen
    • Ensure offers appear at every point of connection with relevant and prospects & customers
    • Working to ensure launch of offers Worldwide to build even more momentum

    We’re extremely excited about our opportunity here and want to help you take full advantage of these promotions to increase profitability and deliver value to your customers. 

    As always, if there is anything we can do to assist you, or should have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out.  Your Microsoft representatives will be following up with you in the next day or two to discuss in more detail and how you can best leverage the offer to grow your business.

    Thank you!

    Kristi Hofer
    National Microsoft Dynamics ERP Channel Manager
    U.S. Microsoft Dynamics

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Statement of Direction for Microsoft Dynamics AX – December 2011 Update

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    Throughout the month, I’ve been sharing information regarding the latest Microsoft Dynamics Statement of Direction (SOD) documents. Up next we have Microsoft Dynamics AX.

    This document will provide insight into our Microsoft Dynamics AX development plans through the year 2015. Whether you are a new or existing customer or partner, this information will help you plan and get the most from your investments.

    Download the updated SOD from PartnerSource.

    Also, don’t forget to register your prospects and existing customers as well as your own organization for the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 for Retail Virtual Launch Event on February 1, 2012 at 9:00 AM PT.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Want to drive profitable growth in your business? The Microsoft Dynamics Master VAR Program may be just the ticket.

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    We are pleased to announce the launch of the Microsoft Dynamics Master VAR program. This program provides a unique opportunity for partners to align with a well-capitalized, growth-oriented Microsoft Dynamics partner that has been selected by Microsoft as a Master VAR. Partners that choose to work with a Master VAR will be able to leverage centralized marketing, support, operations and training at the Master VAR level thereby reducing costs and accelerating sales. This program is the only channel collaboration model that is officially endorsed by Microsoft and it is currently only available in the United States.

    Program Benefits

    Jeff Edwards 2009 01Factors such as the economy, shifts in customer buying behavior and disruptive innovation like the cloud have forced customers and partners to rethink their strategies. The Master VAR program enables partners to work together to face these challenges. By consolidating difficult-to-scale activities and pooling resources, Master VARs and their associated Sales Affiliates can collaborate to compete more effectively and efficiently. Meanwhile, since Sales Affiliates remain independent businesses, they can retain their entrepreneurial spirit, their leadership and the customer relationships that are the cornerstone of their success.

    Sales Affiliates benefit by leveraging shared resources as well as broad expertise available across the Master VAR’s Sales Affiliate network. This frees up resources and enables Sales Affiliates to focus on what they do best, whether it’s sales, technical services, or managing customer relationships.

    Next steps

    Master VAR candidates are currently being evaluated and will be announced shortly. Their contact information will be made available for partners interested in pursuing collaboration opportunities. If you are interested in working with a Master VAR or have questions, please review “What It Means for You” (must be a current Microsoft Dynamics partner to access).

    If you are interested in becoming a Master VAR, you must meet the following criteria:

    • Operating capital of no less than US $1,000,000
    • No less than US $500,000 in gross license revenue recognized by Microsoft in the previous 12 month period as a result of your SPA
    • A 90% or greater BREP revenue recapture rate in the previous 12 month period
    • Additional criteria and ongoing requirements as outlined in the Master VAR Addendum to the SPA
    • Please review the Master VAR evaluation and enrollment process for more details (must be a current Microsoft Dynamics partner to access)

    If you have additional questions on participating in the program, please email:  MasterVAR@microsoft.com.

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

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail Technical Conference 2012

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    Retail Tech Conference - March 2012

    Michael Griffiths, Global Director, Microsoft Dynamics Retail and Distribution, shares this important update today regarding a partner training event being held post-Convergence 2012.

    We are pleased to invite you to participate in the upcoming “Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail Technical Conference 2012”. This conference will be hosted by the Microsoft Dynamics Retail Product Development team in conjunction with the Microsoft Dynamics Sales and Marketing organization.This event will be held on March 22-24 in Houston after the end of Convergence 2012. To address the varying needs of various roles and needs, we have structured this conference into two parallel tracks with varying focus, depth and timelines.

    Key details of the event and tracks are below:

    Track - 1:  Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail for Sales Professionals

    Track - 2:  Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail for Technical Consultants and Implementers

    When:

    March 22, 2012

    March 22 – 24, 2012

    Time:

    8am  to 6pm

    Day 1 & 2:  8am to 6pm

    Day 3:  8am to 4pm

    Where:

    JW Marriott,

    5150, Westheimer Road, Houston, TX 77056

    JW Marriott,

    5150, Westheimer Road, Houston, TX 77056

    Level:

    200

    200 and 300

    Target Audience:

    Sales and Pre-Sales professionals, Account Managers

    Functional and Technical consultants, Solution Architects, Developers, Product Support

    Cost:

    500 USD per person

    1,250 USD per person

    Meals:

    Breakfast, Lunch and snacks/beverages. 

    Breakfast, Lunch and snacks/beverages for all days.

     

    - Overview of Retail Solution and Architecture

    - Key solution differentiators, value proposition

    - Roadmap and momentum

    - Pricing and Licensing

    - Focused sessions on key areas of solution including:

    o Organization and Channel Management

    o Store and Terminal Management

    o Merchandising & Inventory Management

    o Pricing and Promotions Management

    o Point of Sale

    o Customer orders & End of Day process

    o Payment processing & Online Services

    o Reporting and Role Centers

    o Overview of Extensibility & key benefits

    - Overview of Retail Solution and Architecture

    - Key solution differentiators, value proposition

    - In-depth sessions on key areas of solution including:

    o Organization and Channel Management

    o Store and Terminal Management

    o Merchandising & Inventory Management

    o Pricing and Promotions Management

    o Point of Sale

    o Customer orders & End of Day process

    o Payment processing & Online Services

    o Reporting and Role Centers

    o Store Inventory

    o Store Connect and Transaction Services

    o Security, Performance and Scalability

    o Deployment, Troubleshooting and Monitoring

    o Hardware, OS/DB support, Upgrade

    o Locale specific capabilities

    o Overview of Extensibility & key benefits

    o Extensibility scenario – example in depth

    Trainers:

    Sessions will be delivered by SMEs from Retail Product Development team

    Sessions will be delivered by SMEs from Retail Product Development team

    Registration and Participation:

    If you are interested in this session, please send an email to dynamicsretail@microsoft.com with the following information, along with Track 1 – Sales in the email subject.

    • Full Name
    • Organization
    • Contact Information (e-mail and Phone)
    • Role Description

    You will be notified upon approval with follow up instructions to complete registration. 

    Space is highly limited and will be allocated on first come first serve basis

    If you are interested in this session, please send an email to dynamicsretail@microsoft.com with the following information, along with Track 2 – Implementation in the email subject.

    • Full Name
    • Organization
    • Contact Information (e-mail and Phone)
    • Role Description

    You will be notified upon approval with follow up instructions to complete registration. 

    Space is highly limited and will be allocated on first come first serve basis

    Miscellaneous:

    Access to Retail solution (VM) will be provided to participants for use during and post training day

    Access to Retail solution (VM) will be provided to participants for use during and post training day

    “Winning in Retail” is a very high priority for Microsoft, and we have seen great success over the past 18 months. We have a unique value proposition in the market, but with that comes unique requirements for resources and skills. Retail specific training is very important for successful deployments. Just knowing Microsoft Dynamics AX is not enough, nor is simply understanding the retail industry. There are a combination of skills required across the POS, store management, merchandising, supply chain and financials that are important to success. 

    We see this as a Must-Attend training for any partner serious about retail and planning to engage with us moving forward. The pace of our growth and roadmap acceleration means meeting customer expectations without this level of immersion will be extremely challenging. We will expect that people have participated in this training as a foundation for the deeper, direct engagements. We encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity and we look forward to working with all of you.

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011: The Power of Productivity Roadshows

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    There are several cool announcements that popped in my inbox over the course of my vacation last week. Hopefully, I can track them all down and provide some key updates to the blog this week! Let's start with some Microsoft Dynamics CRM training news...

    The release of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, formerly ‘CRM5’, is coming soon and promises to deliver The Power of Productivity to customers and partners through familiar, intelligent and connected experiences. We are excited to host our partners and begin to prepare them for this monumental new product – both for online and on premise sales and deployments. The information-packed day kicks off in a general session learning about the power of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 and the afternoon will be split into two tracks, Sales & Marketing and Technical Presales.

    The training takes place September through October 2010 in multiple cities across the United States.

    Visit PartnerSource for complete details, locations, and registration information.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Dynamics ISV Playbook – September 2011 Edition

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    I hold the partner playbook concept pretty close to my chest having launched the original award-winning Microsoft Dynamics Partner Playbook back in 2006. Since then, the playbook morphed into separate ERP and CRM editions as well as a guide specific to ISV’s.

    The Microsoft Dynamics ISV Playbook is intended as a resource for you to use as you explore becoming an independent software vendor (ISV) for Microsoft Dynamics. It is also intended as a roadmap for new ISVs as you begin your partnership with Microsoft Dynamics to help you understand the decision points you will encounter as you build your solution, certify it and market it throughout the Microsoft ecosystem. Lastly this document can be used as a resource if you are already a Microsoft Dynamics partner and are considering creating functionality to address vertical market needs.

    Microsoft Dynamics ISV Playbook

    The ISV Playbook provides U.S. partners a single source guide with information and links to the most current tools and resources available for Microsoft Dynamics product developers.

    Microsoft Dynamics technologies help fuel productivity and empower businesses to succeed. You can develop long term relationships with customers and help increase profitability by using these resources to deliver comprehensive business-management solutions to your customers—faster than ever.

    As an ISV, Microsoft Dynamics offers [to you]:

    ISV Opportunity: Microsoft® products offer expansive business opportunities for ISVs by providing superior value to customers, helping them to maximize their IT investment and streamline processes across all areas of their business.

    Extensive Partner Ecosystem: Microsoft is deeply committed to a channel-driven strategy. Microsoft Dynamics is committed to selling through a channel-engaged model. This is demonstrated by the competitive partner business model Microsoft offers, as well as the extensive support provided through resources and tools that help partners offset investments and drive strong business results.

    Leading Innovation: Microsoft’s proven commitment towards continually improving its products and becoming the leader in new markets makes Microsoft Dynamics a better platform to build software solutions on for a competitive advantage.

    Best of Breed Solutions: Microsoft Dynamics enables ISVs to utilize its advanced base functionality (e.g. multi-currency GL, analytics, database, cube generation, multi-language ) to build next generation solutions to retain your installed bases of customers and generate new revenue streams.

    Visit PartnerSource for more information regarding how the guide is organized, and to download the September 2011 Edition of the Microsoft Dynamics ISV Playbook.

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Fall through Winter US Partner Training Schedule

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    We've updated the schedule of upcoming training opportunities, and located them within a nice, convenient location on PartnerSource for you to navigate through the entire list with a quick glance. Courses are broken down by role, dates, location, price, availability, and MPN requirement relationships. They include the following:

    Leadership Role

    • Microsoft Dynamics Business Management Workshop
    • Microsoft Dynamics Sales Leadership Workshop

    Marketing Role

    • Microsoft Dynamics Marketing Workshop: Principles of Marketing

    Sales Role

    • Advanced Sales Workshop - Selling the Value of Microsoft Dynamics
    • Value2Win

    Pre-Sales Role

    • Demo2Win
    • Discovery2Win

    Project Manager Role

    • Managing Microsoft Dynamics Projects with Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Methodology

    Microsoft Dynamics AX Partner Certification Training

    • Finance
    • Trade & Logistics
    • Installation & Configuration
    • Development I, II, and III

    Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner Certification Training

    • Applications Professional
    • Installation & Deployment
    • Customization & Configuration

    Microsoft Dynamics GP Partner Certification Training

    • Financials
    • Installation & Configuration

    Microsoft Dynamics NAV Partner Certification Training

    • Financials
    • Installation & Configuration
    • Development I, II

    Microsoft Dynamics SL Partner Certification Training

    • Installation & Configuration
    • Financials

    Microsoft Dynamics Partner Velocity Program

    • Microsoft Dynamics Business Management Workshop
    • Microsoft Dynamics Marketing Workshop: Principles of Marketing
    • Advanced Sales Workshop - Selling the Value of Microsoft Dynamics
    • Managing Microsoft Dynamics Projects with Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Methodology
    • Microsoft Dynamics Sales Leadership Workshop

    Good luck with your training and certification efforts!!!

    --Kevin

  • Microsoft Dynamics Partner Community Blog

    Microsoft Fiscal Calendar Changes Beginning in FY12

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    Microsoft still has two weeks remaining in Fiscal Year 2011, but I wanted to ensure you are knowledgeable of the fiscal calendar changes starting July 1, 2011 by passing along this information from the Microsoft Dynamics Operations team.

    Beginning in FY12 (July 1, 2011), Microsoft will align its fiscal calendar to our external reporting rhythm.

    Microsoft's fiscal year will then be defined consistently moving forward as July 1 to June 30.

    Microsoft is aligning all lines of business to the Gregorian financial calendar in order to better streamline accounting, record keeping and reporting. For Microsoft Business Solutions, these dates are reflected on the FY12 calendar posted on the PartnerSource Ordering Homepage under the 'Ordering Resources' section.

    --Kevin

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