Microsoft has decided to remove what was being termed as a "licensing tax" to encourage wider access to customer service and sales data through the Teams collaboration app. The integration however is still a work in progress. This means that Dynamics 365 data can now be accessed by Microsoft Teams users without any requirement to purchase licenses for the CRM platform.
Microsoft said all Teams users will now gain access to Dynamics data from within the collaboration app, irrespective of whether they have a license or not. Admins can set access rules and permissions to restrict access to customer records.
“Dynamics 365 users can now invite anyone in the organization to view and collaborate on customer records right within the flow of a Teams chat or channel,” Jared Spataro, corporate vice president for Microsoft 365, said in a blog post.
Elimination of the "licensing tax" means CRM data can now be shared among more employees and this will help customer service and sales employees to seamlessly interact with colleagues who generally don't use the CRM tool. The announcement will help customers of Dynamics 365 drive broader adoption without investing in additional licenses for irregular or casual users.
Wayne Kurtzman, research director at IDC, said that Microsoft is positioning Teams as the “launching point” for employees to get work done. “While it is a work in progress with some UI challenges, the integration of Dynamics 365 signals Microsoft's view of the importance of collaboration in the enterprise — and for all workers and across all devices,” he said.
“Ultimately, I think it’s likely that Teams will become the default interface (or at least entry point) for Dynamics 365 for most users, further blurring the line between collaborative applications and line-of-business apps in the Microsoft portfolio,” said Angela Ashenden, principal analyst at CCS Insight.
“Given the success of Teams, it’s easy to see why Microsoft would want to drive this, and given the acquisition of Slack by Salesforce, it’s a trend that’s going to become the norm pretty soon.”
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