How Resellers Can Benefit from Modular Dynamics 365 Licensing

Dynamics 365 was only introduced back in 2016, but a lot has changed in the years since then. Perhaps most notably, an update that came into effect back in October 2019 radically changed the licensing model: in place of set plans that covered certain areas (such as the Customer Engagement Plan that covered CRM concerns) came a new modular approach.

This new system allows Dynamics 365 customers to select only the applications they need, allowing them to save money and streamline their processes. This is great for them, but it’s also great for the resellers sourcing their licenses. If you’re operating as an IT reseller, you need to make the most of this licensing arrangement.

In this post, we’ll take a closer look at how this model works, explore what’s featured in the current lineup, and consider how you might group applications for different scenarios.

Explaining the Dynamics 365 licensing system

The October 2019 update introduced a model that made it possible to pick up individual apps but also incentivised the use of multiple apps. Most of the apps in the lineup are available as baselicenses: a base license is a full-price investment that can function alone. To complement this, most of the apps are also available as attachlicenses: licenses that must be attached to base licenses (purchased with or after them) and cost significantly less as a result.

Anyone looking for one specific application, then, can acquire it for less than they’d have needed to pay for a set plan featuring it — and if they want to pick up the same applications that would have been included in a set plan, the savings stemming from the attach licenses will ensure that it doesn’t cost them anything more than it would have in the previous system.

What applications are available for licensing?

Before you read this section, keep in mind that Microsoft periodically refreshes its lineup of apps, introducing new ones and retiring others (eliminating them entirely or adding their functions to retained apps). Due to this, there’s no good way of keeping a lineup fully updated.

Even Microsoft’s documentation includes apps that are scheduled to be discontinued: the best thing to do is visit the pricing page and download the most recent Dynamics 365 Licensing Guide (you’ll find the link near the bottom of the page). This is one of the biggest reasons why it’s important to stay apprised of Dynamics 365 updates: features will change, and so will apps.

That said, here are the modules in play at the time of writing (June 2020):

Sales Marketing Customer Service Field Service
Project Service Automation Finance Supply Chain Management Commerce
Human Resources Customer Insights Customer Service Insights Fraud Protection

Some categories, such as Human Resources, are themselves apps with no further configuration options. Others, such as Customer Service, require users to select their desired levels of functionality and any optional extras they require. It’s still quite a complicated system, which is why it’s so important for customers to get expert guidance.

How custom plans can boost sales and help customers

If you’re not already familiar with the core value of Dynamics 365, take a look at our main primer (as suggested earlier, disregard the now-outdated list of modules). Factor in all the available modules and apps and you get a system capable of comprehensively overhauling a company’s CRM and sales efforts, using rich data insights to produce consistent improvement.

For resellers, the old system was far from ideal: when pitching their customers on potential deployments, they were forced to explain all included apps, trying (and often failing) to adequately justify the required expenditure. This new system is far better because it allows resellers to determine what their customers need and come up with custom plans for them.

An online retail client, for instance, can receive a pitch for the base Commerce plan with a suitable eCommerce add-on subscription. If they don’t want additional insights, they don’t need to pay for them. Successfully selling a client on a limited deployment of Dynamics 365 can be very useful in the long run, too: if they have a positive experience of the selected apps, they’ll be much more receptive to being sold licenses for other relevant apps.

Modular flexibility is a great thing for IT resellers because it grants them more ways to sell to their customers. Instead of offering one-size-fits-all solutions, you can listen closely to what each customer wants and offer a Dynamics 365 implementation that keeps their costs down and provides exactly what they’re looking for.

If you'd like to know more about modular Dynamics 365 Licensing, contact your intY Account Manager today or partner up with us today!

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