Service organizations depend on effective teamwork and coordination between sales and delivery teams. The sales team has important insights into customer needs and expectations; the delivery team offers crucial expertise in how to best achieve the customer’s vision. When both work together as a cohesive unit, a project benefits from a clear focus that propels deliverables toward successful conclusions.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation enables sales and delivery teams to seamlessly transition projects through each phase – from the initial prospect inquiry, to the closed sale, to project kick-off, through to project completion – with collaboration tools that help better understand the client, and the work that needs to be done.
Here are five of the many tools in Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation that provide teams with in-depth insight into both the customer and the work required to achieve deliverables on-time, on-budget, and in line with customer expectations.
Email is a crucial, everyday business communication tool. Important information and ideas can be easily shared and digested, and courses of action determined, through team email exchanges. But if a team member is accidentally missed, or if an important conversation can’t be referenced in the future, email can slow down the team.
Microsoft Dynamics 365’s integration with Microsoft Office 365 enables team members to easily track Outlook email correspondence that impacts the team. Dynamics 365 creates a central repository for emails to be stored and viewed – when an email is tracked in Outlook, it is saved as an activity record in Dynamics 365.
This activity record is a far more efficient way to loop people into conversations than forwarding an email thread, because anyone who has access to the activity record can view the message at any time (along with any additional customer activities associated with that email activity record). Email threads with a prospect, existing customer, or internal team members all have the ability to be tracked, stored, and referenced whenever needed.
Internal Social Collaboration
Social media allows people to connect, update, and ask questions to a larger network without the formality of emails and meetings. Dynamics 365 offers social collaboration tools that provide additional avenues for proactive sales-to-service information exchange.
Microsoft Yammer allows organizations to set-up a private, Facebook-like social network where employees can post conversations and view newsfeeds for the latest updates. The Yammer mobile app also enables team members to access and post Yammer content no matter their location. Yammer helps break down information siloes by making interaction open across departments and disciplines. For example, a finance team member can provide feedback on a salesperson’s post requesting insight on a budget feature that a customer asks for in a proposal.
Office 365 also promotes collaboration with the ability to create Office Groups. Office Groups offer flexibility and control over how users organize collaboration as they allow team members to create any Group they wish. A Group can be created for team members to discuss the pursuit of a specific deal; a Group can be created to discuss an aspect of a project; a Group can be created to discuss an obstacle the team is tackling, or to talk about a new idea. Users also have the option to make a Group public for all to view and participate in, or private.
Office 365 Group Document Library
In addition to providing team members a channel for conversation, Office 365 Groups enable team members to share and store documents, files, and meeting notes within the Group’s document library. This document library helps the team stay on track with all project-related information, ensuring that teams work off the latest version of the right document, and are able to reference project materials.
There’s no confusion or questions as to who has which document; project documents are all in one place for team members to access at any time. The document library is associated with the project, opportunity, and connects all of the associated information (such as email history, project status updates, etc.) with the rest of the records in Dynamics 365. Documents can also easily be shared externally.
Getting insight into sales and delivery team schedules helps team members better prepare for planned activities, deadlines, and important internal and client meetings. Office 365 Groups enable a team member to share their calendar with others, and to add other team members’ calendars to their own calendar view. This view helps team members see at a glance what the others are planning, scheduling, and working on, and thus they can proactively jump in where assistance or support is needed.
Familiar Microsoft Technology
Microsoft Office applications have long been staple productivity tools for the average worker. Microsoft Dynamics 365 brings together these familiar tools into a powerful, intuitive business management platform. Employees don’t have to spend time figuring out how to use the available business applications; instead, they can quickly navigate to the everyday tools they need, and get their work done.
When all team members are on the same page, it makes the transition from closing a sale to closing a project a seamless, smooth process. When sales and delivery team members present a unified, cohesive front to the customer, it puts the customer at ease and validates their trust – a critical priority for any project-based organization. Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation provides the collaboration tools that help create valuable partnerships with clients, and support success at each step of the project.
For questions on Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Project Service Automation, please contact Hitachi Solutions today.