Opportunity or Competiton

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2007-07-10 Print this article Print

?"> But, by offering its own hosted service, Microsoft is venturing into territory that has previously been the exclusive domain of its partners. The Dynamics line of financial, customer relationship and supply chain management solutions are delivered through a network of channel partners providing specialized services. Click here to read more about Bill Gates Dynamics Live vision.
As such, Microsoft is spinning the move as positive for its partners who, it says, will have new opportunities to deliver value to their customers and to drive revenue for their businesses.
These new partner opportunities include developing and deploying solutions across the three deployment options: Live, on-premise and partner-hosted models. There is also a new partner engagement model for the Microsoft Dynamics Live CRM service, Wilson told eWEEK. Live partners will be compensated on a recurring basis rather than on a one-time basis as is customary, receiving 10 percent of the yearly software-as-a-service subscription revenue for each customer for whom they are the partner of record, he said. As an incentive to encourage partners to support Microsofts Live CRM service, partners are being offered 15 percent of the subscription revenue for 2008. "The beauty of it is no matter how you deploy it as a customer, if you want to change and go from on-premise to a hosted deployment, its the exact same code, the exact same database. If you want to [go] from in the cloud to on-premise, its the exact same product," Wilson said. "So, the ability to migrate across these models is hugely attractive. A big part of our development strategy is to give people that unified option, where we abolish any arbitrary barriers as to how customers do it, and we give them what we call the power of choice," he told eWEEK. This meant that customers could, at any given point in time, align the technology to support their business, based on their specific requirements. To read more about the Dynamics CRM Analytics Foundation, click here. "Its also what Bill Gates calls a server/service symmetry. So, whether you buy this as a service or buy it as a server-based product, its the exact same thing. And so it gives people a ton of choice in that area, the same configuration, same customization, same Outlook and browser experience. But whether the server goes from down the hall to across the firewall is completely transparent to your people," he said. Microsoft also is using the conference to share its vision for a new partner solution marketplace, which will be a focal point for partners to market and sell solutions: allowing Dynamics CRM partners to market on-premise and on-demand solutions by product type, region and industry, while the solutions presented on the partner marketplace would integrate seamlessly with Microsoft Dynamics Live CRM and provide immediate customer benefits. The two new vertical templates being showcased at the conference include reference data models, pre-defined workflows and roles-based user experiences that make Microsoft Dynamics CRM immediately relevant to customers in these industries, Wilson said. The templates are designed to work with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 today, and will be updated for the upcoming release at the end of the year. The templates will be available by the end of July at no charge to partners and customers, while vertical templates for other industries will be delivered over the next year. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis about productivity and business solutions.

Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at www.eweek.com.


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