Business applications in the new revolution

Want to be ready for the fourth industrial revolution? Technology alone isn't the answer.

As we've seen from our previous blog, the fourth industrial revolution is coming soon. It's going to be huge. And it's going to completely change how we work.

Want to turn this to your advantage? You'll need to think about more than just technology. If you really want to reap the rewards of this new world, how that technology is applied, and by whom, is just as important.

It's not what you do - it's the way that you do it

Many business leaders aren't rushing head-first into new and exciting digital processes. Instead, they're taking stock. They're looking at the business models they already have. And they're seeing how digital can make these models better; how they can use it to break down silos, get more insight, and make more confident decisions.

The opportunity of the cloud

At this year's Microsoft Inspire event, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that if businesses want to improve their processes, they need "more contemporary, modular applications, connected data graphs, and a common data model." This will help them "break free from silos of data that hinder the accessibility needed for automation."

To see if they're ready to take on this new approach, smart enterprises and businesses will take a careful look at their internal skillsets around cloud, and find out where the gaps are. But filling those gaps could prove challenging. A recent Microsoft report showed that almost half (46%) of businesses of almost all sizes - from SMEs up to large enterprises - thought that finding internal cloud skills internally wouldn't be any easier in two years' time. It might even be harder.

It's here, in this world of connected, customisable cloud-based business applications, that you can help your clients. This is your chance to join them on their road to digital transformation and help them successfully navigate the fourth industrial revolution.

But first, you need to look inwards at your own capabilities. We know that 38% of Microsoft's traditional partners are struggling to recruit the right skills to support their own digital transformation strategies. We want to help you to bridge this skills gap so you're in the best position to help your clients. More details here .

What you can do - and how we can help

Firstly, put yourself in your client's shoes. They don't want generic benefits. They're looking for a real-world application. So, what does a single platform of multiple business applications like Dynamics 365, that can bring together people, data and processes, look like? And how do clients get the best possible value from it?

Next, you'll need to bring your own knowledge, industry insight and skills to the implementation. They know you have the cloud skills, and they'll expect you to make use of your deep insight into the strengths of Microsoft solutions to turn the vision you've developed with them into something real.

One of the UK's leading floor specialists, Carpetright is using the Dynamics 365 platform to improve the way they receive orders, process products and deliver them to homeowners. The solution also provides customers with highly accurate delivery times and installation quotes. So, people won't have to take a whole day off work to wait for their delivery and they'll know in advance how much it will cost to fit the product they've bought.

We're perfectly positioned to help you deliver solutions to your customers, and we'll give you support and advice along the way. With our "build-with" support, we can help you explore partnerships with independent software vendors to develop bespoke business solutions. We'll train you and your team to create better apps, and we'll help to make your proposition stronger. Not just now, but in your future sales and marketing efforts as well.

Next steps

In the next post, we're going to look at how you can help your business customers make best use of data and AI. In the meantime, for more information on Dynamics 365 please follow this link, or you can take a trial of Dynamics 365 Business Apps here.