What do the current and upcoming changes to Dynamics 365 CE mean to our implementations?
Recently I had to explain the changes – both the upcoming changes and the recent changes – to a prospect who is not a Dynamics 365 user and has limited familiarity with it. While the changes cannot and must not be ignored, they do only affect certain aspects of the product.
If we use the analogy of home renovations, we could describe the changes as follows:
- We have added some large extensions to the back of the house – which are not visible from the street;
- We have rearranged the ornaments and pictures inside the house, perhaps replaced some carpet, but not done anything radical;
- We have redesigned the garden path from the street to the front door, making it a little longer and less direct – but it still gets us from the street to the front door;
So, the changes have little effect on us as residents of the house, but they do affect our ongoing maintenance of the house. They also affect visitors to our home, if they have not visited us since the renovations. Obviously, the additional rooms and functionality that the extensions give us are very useful, and we will probably enjoy using them. The longer garden path, with its extra gate, is fine - once you get used to it. Ornaments and pictures in different places make little difference to our everyday life.
There were obviously some reasons why we made the garden path longer, and some of our visitors will approve, but others will simply be annoyed.
The extensions will increase the maintenance of the house, and we may need to retrain or replace some staff – the gardener will probably not be happy dusting the books in the new library, even though the books are in the same place as his walled garden used to be.
What should we do to ensure success from these changes?
- First of all, we should plan. Remember, failing to plan is planning to fail.
- We should ensure that we know which of the many changes affect us – and each group of users, and how big the change is. These documents and links may help:
- If we have done radical configuration and customisation, ensure that it still works after the upgrade, and probably think about rolling it back. The new functionality gives us more robust alternatives for many changes that were deemed essential when they were done – even a few months ago.
- Ensure that we have tested the changes, and fixed any issues, so the changes to production happen smoothly.
- Communicate with our users so they are not taken by surprise when the changes arrive.
- For those users where there is a radical change to how they work, we should provide training.
If you would like any help ensuring that your update proceeds smoothly, please call us on +61 2 82 1234 80 or book time for a zoom chat here