How the Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Solver Agreement Benefits Microsoft Sellers
In a recent announcement, Microsoft and Solver launched their Agreement to deliver deeply integrated planning and reporting for Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 Finance. This Agreement offers several benefits for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance (Finance); and as a byproduct, many of these same benefits will also be available for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (Business Central). Key benefits for Finance, Business Central, and both (D365) are discussed below.
More Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance & Business Central wins
With D365 ERPs being an important foothold in the office of finance for Microsoft and a driver of recurring cloud revenue, the collaboration with Solver will help increase the win ratio in all the deals where customers are looking for ERP + advanced planning and reporting features.
In recent years, D365 competitors like Workday and Oracle with their NetSuite app have complimented their accounting systems with strong financial reporting, budgeting and forecasting functionality. Workday did this by acquiring and integrating Adaptive Insights and Oracle bolted their Hyperion cloud product on top of NetSuite.
The planned deepened two-way integrations, drill-through, out-of-the-box reports, budget forms and dashboards along with Microsoft’s Solver Agreement will help match their competitors’ CPM advantages and likely exceed them. One of the reasons is that Solver goes beyond D365 by also supporting numerous other Microsoft technologies as we will discuss next.
Pull–through of other Microsoft offerings (Office, Azure – few CPMs there, Teams)
The Solver solution is one of the very few CPM apps that runs on the Microsoft Azure cloud. Most other CPM vendors early on chose to partner with Amazon and deployed their solutions on the AWS platform. However, for Microsoft, there are additional product benefits when its Dynamics customers also implement Solver, such as:
Deep D365 integrations (with additional features coming as a result of the Microsoft Agreement)
Easy access as certified and preferred App on the Microsoft AppSource marketplace
Certified Power BI integration
Deep Microsoft Excel integration
Azure Active Directory (AAD) with single sign-on
Microsoft Teams compatibility
Annual recurring co-sell revenue to Microsoft
Incentivized Microsoft sellers
In the pre-cloud era, often to many Microsoft independent software developers’ (ISVs) frustration, there were rarely any direct financial benefits for a Microsoft seller to put in extra effort to bring ISV products to their customer accounts. However, as Microsoft has risen to become a global cloud leader with Azure, it also realized that their Azure-based ISVs pulls through important recurring revenue based on the ongoing Azure resources they consume. To create a direct motivation and benefit to their own sellers, Microsoft has created a so-called “co-sell program” where their sellers have commission quotas for the participating ISVs they help sell into their accounts.
To encourage collaboration with the global Microsoft field teams, Solver is in the highest level of the co-sell program for Finance, referred to as “Dynamics 365 Finance ISV Connect Premium Tier Co-sell Ready Program.” Here is an interview April Olson, Principal Group Product Manager for Microsoft Dynamics 365 discussing the collaboration with Solver.
Customer satisfaction that drives “Stickiness”
Microsoft, like any other business, knows all the benefits of having highly satisfied customers. With recurring revenues being a core focus for cloud-oriented companies, customer satisfaction has gotten more attention than ever. A happy customer usually means that this customer is likely to renew, and maybe also expand their subscriptions.
When a company invests time and money into multiple connected solutions, such as D365 and Solver, and their ROI is according to expectations, they will generally stay on the platforms. This is often referred to as “stickiness” in the tech space.
The announced Microsoft Agreement with Solver has high customer satisfaction as a prime goal. It comes along with new technology that promises rapid time-to-value and functionality that will help customers enable their managers with faster and better decisions.
Analyst reviews of Dynamics 365 Finance & Business Central
There are numerous analysts following the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) space. Their customer surveys and research often highlight strengths and weaknesses of each vendor. Many prospective customers use analyst reports to support their ERP purchase decisions. And similarly, when their products are given a high rating or a strong position in an analyst quadrant, sellers use the reports in the sales process.
The Agreement with Solver will benefit D365 customers with tightly integrated features for advanced budgeting, forecasting, reporting and consolidations. Along with strengthened integration opportunities, especially for Azure-based ISV applications, Microsoft is driving relationships like the one with Solver to maximize customer satisfaction which ultimately also drives coverage in analyst reports.
The Microsoft and Solver collaboration reinforces their strategic bet on working with ISVs to enable go-to-market offerings that will help customers with their digital transformation. When combined with incentives like Microsoft the Co-sell program and other benefits discussed in this post, there is an historical opportunity for Microsoft sellers and ISVs to bring unified cloud solutions to customers to drive the success of their businesses.