Archive by Author | xrmaaron

Why You Need The Cloud

You use the cloud more than you realize. Did you write a postcard today? How about writing a check? What about going to the post office? Do you even know where your post office is? Has anyone used a map today; the paper kind?

Five years ago 53% of people would have answered yes to at least 2 or 3 of these questions. The cloud is changing the world we live in and the future ahead. We know we live in a world of social media. We live in a world of mobile. We live a world of analytics. We also live in a world, in this amazing time, called cloud. Cloud is something that is going to transform the way all of us work. In fact, it already is. If you have kids, you’ve either thought about or actually monitor what they do on their mobile devices. That’s a good thing these days, right? We’re in a world in which everything is connected. Let’s take a little journey on the connected world.

Fascinating Facts

In 1960, the population of planet Earth was 3 billion. Today, you likely have a phone where you can look that up on Google or you can ask Siri or Cortana? These answers are easy to find. We’re in a connected world that uses the cloud. The population of the planet today is 7.1 billion. The population in 2020 will be 7.8 billion. This is really interesting because the thing about cloud is not about the number of businesses. It’s about the number of people. What do you think the population of the United States was in 1960? It was 180 million, right? The population of the US today is 316 million. That’s almost double and continues to grow. It continues to grow where you live; in big cities like LA, NY, Chicago, Atlanta, and Miami. Cities are getting bigger and bigger so there’s more and more people to serve in those cities. Let me give you another example. The population of China in 1960 was 660 million. Now it is a staggering 1.35 billion. That’s the latest census statistics. That’s a lot of people. Can you imagine how many cloud consumers are going to be added in China? The population of India in 1960 was 449 million. Today, it is a staggering 1.25 billion. It’s gone up “3X”. The cloud is about the users. Let me give you one last statistic to give you a sense of the magnitude of the journey that you’re on and why it’s important that you take that journey soon. 20 years ago, there were less than 500 million cell phone subscribers. Today, worldwide, there are 6.7 billion cell phone users. Many people have more than one subscription. As of this year (2015), there are 4.5 billion users. That means that most of the people on the planet already has a cell phone. Everything is connected. Data flows everywhere in the world.   Excerpts from: Nimish Dave, Ingram Micro Cloud Summit 2015 Keynote.

Opportunity Knocks

As the number of people accessing data on their devices and apps increases, organizations already in the cloud are experiencing a transformation of efficiency, cost and emergence which allows small businesses to compete with major firms for business.  Not only do these cloud adopters experience the benefits but their consumer base does as well. Some great examples are Airbnb and Uber.  As a consumer, these cloud offerings weren’t there a few years ago.  However, they are now.  Plus they have added efficiencies to our everyday lives.  As this trend continues, your employees and consumers expect it.  Imagine that you’re a medical association with 25,000 members.   Your consumers, the medical professionals, can go onto a mobile app to register for an industry event that they get Continuing

Medical Education (CME) credit at. Within that app they can register and track events hosted by you, another society, other journals, grand rounds, and virtually anything that counts for credit. Now imagine if upon registering, you and other credentialing bodies could see and track their transcripts across organizations. Imagine as the medical professional being able to do this from one app rather than disparate places to understand what their entire CME transcript is and what categories have not been satisfied and when those are due.

When is the last time you’ve traveled? If you’ve traveled recently, you likely have used a mobile cloud app like the one United Airlines offers. In there, you can purchase your tickets, pick your seats, add extra bags, track your miles, view your travel history, receive status updates and board the plane all from your phone.

As consumers, we expect the same conveniences in our professional lives as we do in our personal ones. The first step toward achieving this goal is getting your organization on to the cloud so that the transformation process can begin. Once you’re in the cloud, your users and consumers can use any device, any platform, anywhere which opens up new opportunities.

Challenges In 2015

Many small and medium sized businesses (SMB) are focused on increasing profitability, growth and customer relationships while reducing operational costs. Below, the SMB top 10 business issues, IT priorities and challenges businesses are faced with are depicted. Source: 2015 Top 10 SMB Business Issues, IT Priorities and IT Challenges (Infographic).

top-ten-SMB-Issues-priorities-challenges

Ways Others Are Using It

Many SMBs are leveraging the cloud more than ever. The following infographic depicts the current trends on how it is being used. Source: Intuit, The Applification of Small Businesses.

IntuitSMBcloudStats2015

What Others Are Doing About It

Here are the current statistics as more businesses continue to adopt the cloud. The infographic below shows who is adopting the cloud, how SMBs compare to larger businesses, the realized benefits, top uses, the future and projections. Source: Rackspace.

cloudstats-2015

Is The Cloud In Your Roadmap?

As SMBs continue to adopt the cloud at an accelerated rate, they’re enabled to focus on their customers and making their businesses operate efficiently, timely and smart. Think about your competitors. Have they adopted the cloud yet? Whoever adopts earlier will have a competitive advantage in reaching new markets and growing existing ones. Is the cloud in your business roadmap? Don’t get left behind in this amazing time.

About Us

BusiPlanIT is a cloud market innovator helping companies who are looking for guidance on how to successfully achieve their business goals in the cloud. We offer services developing roadmaps and strategies, cloud procurement and implementation as well as enterprise technology transformation.

For a free cloud assessment, contact us contact us today.

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8 Benefits You Should Expect Of CRM

If you’re currently using Dynamics CRM or shopping around, you’ll want to read this important message.

Does your CRM increase the productivity of your workforce?

A correctly aligned CRM can enable your workforce to operate 10% to 30% more efficient.

“On average, sales and marketing costs average from 15%-35% of total corporate costs. So the effort to automate for more sales efficiency is absolutely essential. In cases reviewed, sales increases due to advanced CRM technology have ranged from 10% to more than 30%.” –Harvard Business Review

Is your CRM preventing disruptions in your sales cycle?

A common complaint we hear among the CRM user community is how their CRM doesn’t really align with their sales methodology. You do not have to conform to CRM. CRM can conform to your way of doing business.

Can you easily identify new market opportunities by simply analyzing the data patterns that reside in CRM?

A well designed CRM captures the right information and has usable and intelligent analytic capabilities that business leaders and decision makers can act on in a timely manner. It creates a competitive advantage when you can, for instance, identify when to upsell items because you can see a pattern that would otherwise have gone unnoticed. You’ve now captured revenue you would have missed out on.

“Successful CRM is about competing in the relationship dimension. Not as an alternative to having a competitive product or reasonable price- but as a differentiator. If your competitors are doing the same thing you are (as they generally are), product and price won’t give you a long-term, sustainable competitive advantage. But if you can get an edge based on how customers feel about your company, it’s a much stickier–sustainable–relationship over the long haul.” –Bob Thompson, CustomerThink Corporation

Does your CRM enable you to define marketing strategies and lead tracking that are truly necessary for your organization to be effective?

One of the most important pieces to the lifeblood of successful businesses is market penetration and growth. If your CRM isn’t flexible enough to allow you to market and track your potential customers in an effective and efficient manner, you’re losing potential revenue.

Is your CRM growing with your business?

We’ve seen businesses that have aligned their CRM with their business model grow faster than ones who haven’t.

Is your CRM saving your workforce time?

When CRM is tailored to your business, your workforce becomes more productive with the time saved from too many clicks, steps or the way data is organized in out of the box CRM.

“The impact on an organization can at times be subtle and distributed throughout the enterprise…Cost savings and productivity enhancements can be seen in saving a sales person 20 minutes per week in writing activity reports, or answering four times the volume of web-based service requests in the same amount of time.” –Mary Wardley, vice-president of IDC’s CRM applications research.

Does your CRM create value for your organization?

We’ve all heard the term that IT systems are typically a “cost center”. CRM on the other hand can actually generate revenue opportunities and efficiencies that in turn more than pay for the investment.

Do you have a 360 degree view of your customers?

One of the most important reasons organizations like yours invests in CRM is to have the ability to have all the data about their customers in a consolidated view which tells their story so that you don’t have to guess or burn precious time tracking down fragments of information in order to nurture that relationship more personally.

If you answered “No” to any of these questions, then you’re not alone. Many are not benefiting from the full value their CRM has to offer but could be.

The solution to maximizing the power that CRM can have on your organization is BusiPlanIT. We specialize in tailored Dynamics CRM solutions that maximize value. Let’s face it. Out of the box capabilities can only get your CRM part of the way to truly aligning with your business model. Why not close that gap and experience the full potential Dynamics CRM can give your organization.

For a free assessment, contact us today. Please leave your preferred phone number & email address in the question box as well as any other helpful info.

W: www.busiplanit.com

New Discovery URI for O365 CRM Online

The other day I was going through the process of writing a plug-in for a Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online client. When it came to connecting the Plugin Registration Tool to their online tenant it reminded me to share this piece of wisdom so that you won’t go on a wild goose chase or second guess your CRM knowledge.

Then trying to connect you must give some basic info so that the tool can authenticate to your Online tenant. Something that Microsoft hasn’t communicated very clearly to CRM Online customers is that the authentication method has changed between January and July of 2013 depending on when your tenant was scheduled to convert over to use the O365 authentication from the old Live ID method.

Now, back to the connection info. The following screen shows the connection info for the Plugin Registration Tool (also used on the Developer Toolkit for connecting to CRM Explorer; and likely other common tools). For the discovery service, you will need to change your URI from the old way when it was Live ID authentication:

OLD WAY:

old-live-id-auth-crm
If you try to perform the above, you will surely get the famous authentication failed message.  Just truncate the discovery URI as depicted and you’ll surely connect.

Note the my example below uses the un-federated domain that O365 assigns your AD when you sign up; thus the “username@org_name.onmicrosoft.com” versus if your domain is federated it would look something like “username@domain.com” for the User Name.

The following picture shows the correct discovery URI to authenticate using O365 authentication.

CORRECT WAY:

new-o365 auth-crm

Hopefully this helps save you time.  Until next time, happy CRMing.