Blog Feed Post

Dynamics 365 – Salesforce ISVs Take Notice

If you have been following along, you know that we were Salesforce Consultants for 10 years before we moved to Dynamics 6 years ago. We left Salesforce in the rear view mirror, and never heard from anyone related to them again… until recently.

Hey, Watcha Got There?

In the last month we have been contacted by six Salesforce ISVs wanting to pick our brain. Apparently, if you search for Salesforce and Dynamics 365 together, this post shows up high on the list. It would appear that the launch of Dynamics 365 is making some noise, and that noise is being heard by some forward-thinking Salesforce ISVs.

AppSource Inspiration

If you have been thinking about AppSource, and trying to come up with a good idea that would succeed in a Business Solutions add-ons marketplace, you may have had some sleepless nights. There you sit, imagining ideas, and trying to think if they might be winners. An untapped source of winning ideas already exists, it’s called AppExchange. While the platforms are significantly different, Salesforce and Dynamics 365 are attacking the same customer base with similar messaging. There is no doubt that Salesforce is the biggest competitor to Microsoft in the Business Solutions space. To be fair, AppExchange is full of losers too, but there are some well established players in there to go and emulate.

Developers, Developers, Developers!

Who can forget Steve Ballmer’s passionate “Call to Arms”:

But, in spite of trying to motivate us with a near maniacal approach, Microsoft has not had the success, that Steve knew way back then, would be critical to Microsoft’s success. Now, years later, that tide may finally be turning. But we still have a long way to go. BTW, could you imagine Satya doing this?

Jump in, the Water’s Fine

The calls I am getting from these Salesforce ISVs are remarkably similar. “We have this App that we built for Salesforce, and we are considering making a Dynamics 365 version of it, can you help?”. In the 6 years since we jumped over the fence, I have not gotten this call once before, and now suddenly, the phone is ringing off the hook. In the ten years we were Salesforce consultants, we had not traveled down the AppExchange path… we were implementers. Sure, we utilized many apps from AppExchange, we just had not built any of our own. Similar to the Microsoft ecosystem, ISVs were their own breed.

As a successful Salesforce ISV, you have two options for growth, getting more Salesforce customers to use your app, or taking your domain knowledge and applying it to an alternative platform. Up until recently, Dynamics 365 market-share has not been compelling enough to make the investment. It is the same issue Windows Phone had. The difference is, that while Dynamics 365 market-share compared to Salesforce may still be small, unlike Windows Phone, it is growing.

Salesforce was Built for ISVs

As usual, Microsoft is late to the party. Microsoft is late to every party, but once they arrive, I would not bet against them. Sure, they failed miserably with Windows Phone, Microsoft Band, etc, but those were not Satya’s forays, he inherited them. When you look at where Satya has placed his bets, you see nothing but a string of winners. Now, Scott Guthrie has been given the nod by Satya, to make AppSource a winner. You should be paying attention.

Appsource launched less than a year ago and is in a frantic chicken race to catch the egg. The leader of AppSource, Satish Thomas, told me recently that they were “Shipping new builds Weekly”. They have a road-map as long as your arm, but they are plowing through it like PacMan. If you feel something critical is missing, look again in a week.

Microsoft is Aware

There are a few things on the AppSource road-map that are indicated internally by big question marks. Significant ISV solutions are one of those things. Microsoft has made tremendous progress with the low-hanging fruit, and are now turning more of their attention to the upper branches. I have had several conversations with the team, as recently as last week, about enabling Big Solutions. It is about flipping from Dynamics 365 being the solution, plus some add-ons, to third-party solutions being the star, that just happen to run on top of the Dynamics 365 engine. In this area, Salesforce is still quite far ahead. But Microsoft is not ceding that market to Salesforce, instead they are seriously turning it over in their hands. Again, I would not bet against them.

What is Needed

Let’s face it, if Microsoft and Salesforce were people, they would be the biggest egomaniacs you ever met. I doubt anyone would question that Benioff is a world-class egomaniac, but he also has a stock price to support. Benioff is perfectly fine with an ISV not mentioning that their HRIS application runs on Salesforce… he smiles all the way to the bank. In fact, he made an ISV license just for this purpose, with just the basic framework, at a low cost that you just build in. In many of these solutions, you don’t even know they are running on Salesforce! I don’t know that Microsoft is ready to let the  “Dynamics 365” brand take a back seat. As the underdog, they may feel that they can’t yet.

SFDC to D365

Taking your Salesforce App and making a Dynamics 365 version, is not unlike translating a user manual from English to Chinese, it will come out better if you have a native Chinese interpreter. “But Steve, you transitioned over”. Yes, and I have a 6 year head-start on you, which included replacing 90% of my team. Would I like for you to work with us on this venture? Sure, but if not us, then at least engage a qualified Dynamics 365 partner, there are many. You are trading money for time, and time is more important, because we are looking at your AppExchange solutions for inspiration right now.

The post Dynamics 365 – Salesforce ISVs Take Notice appeared first on Steve Mordue.

Read the original blog entry...

Latest Stories
DX World EXPO, LLC, a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
"Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Conference Guru has been named “Media Sponsor” of the 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organizers to pass great deals to gre...
DevOps is under attack because developers don’t want to mess with infrastructure. They will happily own their code into production, but want to use platforms instead of raw automation. That’s changing the landscape that we understand as DevOps with both architecture concepts (CloudNative) and process redefinition (SRE). Rob Hirschfeld’s recent work in Kubernetes operations has led to the conclusion that containers and related platforms have changed the way we should be thinking about DevOps and...
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develop...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
The next XaaS is CICDaaS. Why? Because CICD saves developers a huge amount of time. CD is an especially great option for projects that require multiple and frequent contributions to be integrated. But… securing CICD best practices is an emerging, essential, yet little understood practice for DevOps teams and their Cloud Service Providers. The only way to get CICD to work in a highly secure environment takes collaboration, patience and persistence. Building CICD in the cloud requires rigorous ar...
Companies are harnessing data in ways we once associated with science fiction. Analysts have access to a plethora of visualization and reporting tools, but considering the vast amount of data businesses collect and limitations of CPUs, end users are forced to design their structures and systems with limitations. Until now. As the cloud toolkit to analyze data has evolved, GPUs have stepped in to massively parallel SQL, visualization and machine learning.
"Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
"ZeroStack is a startup in Silicon Valley. We're solving a very interesting problem around bringing public cloud convenience with private cloud control for enterprises and mid-size companies," explained Kamesh Pemmaraju, VP of Product Management at ZeroStack, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Large industrial manufacturing organizations are adopting the agile principles of cloud software companies. The industrial manufacturing development process has not scaled over time. Now that design CAD teams are geographically distributed, centralizing their work is key. With large multi-gigabyte projects, outdated tools have stifled industrial team agility, time-to-market milestones, and impacted P&L stakeholders.
"Akvelon is a software development company and we also provide consultancy services to folks who are looking to scale or accelerate their engineering roadmaps," explained Jeremiah Mothersell, Marketing Manager at Akvelon, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Enterprises are adopting Kubernetes to accelerate the development and the delivery of cloud-native applications. However, sharing a Kubernetes cluster between members of the same team can be challenging. And, sharing clusters across multiple teams is even harder. Kubernetes offers several constructs to help implement segmentation and isolation. However, these primitives can be complex to understand and apply. As a result, it’s becoming common for enterprises to end up with several clusters. Thi...