Cloud intelligence to help you move to a modern workplace

Blog Written By | Microsoft 365

We live and work in a time in which there is more change happening at a more rapid pace than ever before. The way in which organizations empower employees across all their devices is changing rapidly as they deliver work experiences that are more empowering and transformative for their users. Organizations desire to move to a consistent and unified way to enable their users across all their devices and are looking for guidance on the best way to do this that is both empowering and secure.

The core of modern management and security is delivering users the modern workplace that empowers them to achieve more across all their devices while providing the required security and protection of the organization’s assets. The modern workplace delivered through Microsoft 365 is loved by users, loved by IT, and trusted by everyone. Users love this experience because they can work how, when, and where they want without the reduction in functionality or experience. IT loves this experience because it provides a common and consistent method and tool to manage and enable users across all their devices while also delivering the security and protection they require. Users and IT trust this solution because both the user’s privacy and the organization’s data and assets are secure.

Microsoft shared some announcements to simplify IT management and bring this vision for the future to life:

  • Embrace modern management to manage and secure your devices with the unified Microsoft Endpoint Manager
  • Empower organizations with insights that transform how work gets done and drive impact with Microsoft Productivity Score. 
  • Simplify meeting room management with Managed Meeting Rooms service.
  • Simplify administration with updates to the Microsoft 365 admin center and Office 365 Groups.

The future of management: Microsoft Endpoint Manager

System Center Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) and Microsoft Intune provide integrated cloud-powered management tools, and unique co-management options to provision, deploy, manage, and secure endpoints and applications across an organization.

Microsoft Endpoint Manager is the convergence of Intune and ConfigMgr functionality and data – plus new intelligent actions – offering seamless. end-to-end management solution without the complexity of migration or disruption to productivity. Microsoft Endpoint Manager provides transformative modern management and security that meets customers where they are and helps them move to the cloud. In addition to Intune and ConfigMgr, Microsoft Endpoint Manager includes the Device Management Admin Center (DMAC) and Desktop Analytics.

Microsoft is also simplifying licensing, and they are making the licensing to Intune available to all ConfigMgr customers to co-manage your Windows devices. If you would like to manage non-Widows devices through Microsoft Endpoint Manager, you will need to purchase either an Intune license, and Enterprise Mobility & Security (EMS) license, or a Microsoft 365 E3 or higher license.

Insights that transform how work gets done: Microsoft Productivity Score

Every organization needs a way to determine success and business impact. However, translating productivity into measurable impact can be challenging. Organizations would like a better way to measure how they are doing – both in regard to how employees are getting work done more efficiently, as well as how technology is enabling them to save time and be more productive. Enter Microsoft Productivity Score to give you the insights that help you transform how your users get work done and drive greater business impact.

Productivity Score focuses on two areas, the Employee experience, and the Technology experience, which provides visibility into how your organization works, insights to identify where you can enable improved experiences, and actions you can take to update skills and systems so everyone can do their best work.

The Employee experience shows you how Microsoft 365 is helping to create a productive and engaged workforce. By quantifying how people are collaborating on content, working from anywhere, developing a meeting culture, and communicating with each other, you can see the different ways that work gets done. With advice on how people can work in new ways and training materials to help them learn, you can empower everyone to do their best work.

The Technology experience provides insights by assessing policies, device settings, and hardware and application performance within the organizational environment and recommends actions taken in Microsoft Endpoint Manager.  Users receive the most up-to-date features, persistent security, devices with faster boot times, and increased battery life. You can improve their scores by identifying best practices and ideal configurations to ensure Technology and Employee experiences are mutually supported.

Simplifying meeting room management: Managed Meeting Rooms

Productive meetings are essential to success in the modern workplace. Coupled with the rise in remote collaboration, business leaders increasingly associate more effective meetings with having the right meeting room technology and environment. Microsoft announced a preview of Managed Meeting Rooms, a new offer for managing meeting rooms as a service. This service is a cloud-based IT management and security monitoring service that ensures that Teams meeting rooms are secured, up to date, and proactively monitored for a great in-room experience.

Security and productivity enhancements in the Microsoft 365 admin center and new management capabilities for Office 365 Groups

Microsoft has announced security and productivity enhancements for Microsoft 365 admin center and Office 365 Groups.

To begin, support for Global reader role in the Microsoft 365 admin center – a top request from customers –  is generally available and rolling out to Microsoft 365 tenants right now. By using the Global reader role, you can improve your security posture by reducing the number of Global admins in your organization. Global readers can view all settings and administrative information across Microsoft 365, but they can’t make any changes. The global reader is especially useful for planning, audit, and investigation activities, and it can be used in combination with other roles, such as Exchange admin, to make it easier to get work done without requiring Global admin permissions.

Microsoft is rolling out new AI-powered recommendations in the Microsoft 365 admin center that help you identify potential areas of concern and quickly act to address them through guided experiences. Recommendations are based on admin activities and your organization’s current configuration settings, and they cover Microsoft Information Protection, Advanced Threat Protection, self-service password reset, and GDPR compliant data retention.

Finally, Microsoft has been working hard to enhance Ofice 365 Groups, which facilitates collaboration across more than 20 Microsoft 365 services. They added several highly requested customer features to the Groups service to make group management more efficient and secure, including support for naming policies, expiry, and auto-renewal based on activity, the ability to browse and restore deleted groups and rename group SharePoint URL’s, and the addition of the Groups admin role. Microsoft also added new features for Groups clients such as Outlook, Teams, Yammer, and Planner.

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Microsoft Teams: Businesses need to still run even in a pandemic

Microsoft Teams during Corona Virus

How to keep your business running with Microsoft Teams

With the Corona Virus being a global pandemic stress levels are at an all-time high. South Africa has released news on how to trey curb the spread in your day to day activities. All businesses are concerned for employees and have to implement best practices moving forward. One of those best practices is to direct staff to work from home. This, of course, does not apply to all industries but is being implemented in a number of companies globally and nationally. Microsoft Teams offers some relief for businesses to collaborate remotely.

How to work remotely

The precautions a person can take are to wash their hands frequently, use hand sanitizer where available, and remember to try not to touch your face. Remember to wipe down surfaces you touch regularly with disinfected. Items that come to mind for our company are our earphones, mouse, computer keyboards, phones, and door handles.

Teams across the globe are moving to remote work. Microsoft aims to keep teams connected while they work apart by making Microsoft Teams available to as many people as possible. Teams allows you to chat, meet, call, and collaborate all in one place.

Microsoft Teams

Businesses using Office 365 will already have Teams available to them as one of the Office applications. Microsoft also offers Teams for free currently. Included in the free version of Teams is the following:

  • Unlimited chat and search – Communicate with your team and always stay up to date with free chat and search capabilities.
  • Video calling – Get your whole team on the same page with the free, built-in group and one-to-one audio or video calling.
  •  Team and personal file storage – Enjoy 10 GB team file storage and 2 GB of personal file storage per person.
  • Real-time collaboration with Office – Work together using your favourite Office apps for the web including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote.

For businesses looking for Office 365 plans please let us know and we will be happy to get you set up online to continue running your business from the web. For more information please see our “Setup Teams for Free Guide“, or visit Microsoft to set up your free trial.

Written by: Romy Kunneke, Marketing Coordinator

What is CRM and why do you need it?

crm

Written By | allonline365

If you don’t understand CRM and why you need it – this is for you

Whether your business is in the industry of food distribution, retail, construction, NPO, or you have multiple sales agents making their way through a long list of calls each day – Customer Relationship Management (CRM) should be one of your focus areas.

What is CRM?

Customer relationship management is a data-driven software solution that improves how you interact and do business with your customers. CRM systems help you manage and maintain customer relationships, track leads, marketing, pipeline, and deliver actionable data.

Why Implement a CRM Solution?

CRM solutions increase your profitability by streamlining administrative processes in your sales, marketing, and service divisions, and letting you focus on building and maintaining the customer relationships that matter. A strong CRM solution is a multifaceted platform where everything crucial to developing, improving, and retaining your customer relationships is stored. Without the support of an integrated CRM solution, you may miss growth opportunities and lose revenue because you’re not optimizing your operating processes or making the most of your customer relationships or sales leads.

Imagine misplacing customer contact information, only to learn that your delay resulted in losing a client to a competitor. Or, picture your top two salespeople pursuing the same prospect, resulting in an annoyed potential customer and some unfriendly, in-house competition. Without a centralized and automated CRM system, your people can lose track of customer interactions and miss business opportunities.

Why use Dynamics 365 for CRM?

With Dynamics 365 Sales you get a flexible solution that’s customizable to suit your business requirements. Choose a stand-alone application to meet the needs of a specific line of business, or use multiple CRM tools that work together as a powerful integrated solution. Here are some of the integrated tools you can expect to enjoy.

1.  Marketing: Improve your customers’ journey

Generate multichannel marketing campaigns, nurture sales-ready leads, and align your sales and marketing teams with planning and tracking tools that integrate with your existing apps and services.

Foster leads

  • Run multichannel campaigns featuring email marketing, web content, and events.
  • Target matched audiences based on LinkedIn interactions using Dynamics 365 Connector for LinkedIn Lead Gen Forms.
  • Personalize the buyer experience by customizing customer journeys on user engagement.

Make better decisions

  • Gain Insights into your brand reputation and market through real-time data analysis.
  • Prioritize leads using multiple scoring models.
  • Build custom dashboards to analyze the data that matters the most to your business.

Adapt quickly

  • Automate processes for better service engagement experiences.
  • Use artificial intelligence (AI) to guide your business decisions and drive innovation.
  • Rely on the Microsoft cloud platform to reduce operating costs and simplify deployment across your infrastructure.

2.  Sales: Empower sellers to drive personal engagement with customers

Go beyond sales force automation to better understand customer needs, engage more effectively, and win more deals. Sell smarter with embedded insights, foster relationships, boost productivity, accelerate sales performance, and innovate with a modern and adaptable platform. Use AI capabilities to track customer relationships and automate sales execution with contextual prompts that drive sales strategy.

Grow business

  • Improve win rate with a dynamic, event-driven sales process.
  • Build pipeline with high-quality leads and prospects from a variety of sources.
  • Measure the past and identify leading indicators for the future.

Stay focused

  • Find the right prospects and customers.
  • Always know the next best action to move relationships forward.
  • Build a high-performing sales team.

Win faster

  • Engage and collaborate around strategic deals.
  • Align with the buyer’s journey to deliver personalized engagement.
  • Work anytime, anywhere.

Customer Service: Effortless service through any channel

Deliver guided, intelligent service and support on any channel with a unique ability to work with your existing systems. Empower customers and agents with the tools they need to ensure quick and accurate resolution, every time.

Improve engagement

  • Let customers connect quickly and easily through multi-channel service options.
  • Use the AI of service bots to increase service availability and free your agents for more high-value interactions.
  • Resolve issues quickly using data analysis and predictive care.

Personalize your service 

  • Deliver value with every interaction with a complete customer view.
  • Guide agents’ actions toward optimal outcomes using intelligent automation.
  • Create upsell or cross-sell opportunities using contextual customer data.

Streamline your customer service

  • Improve service based on survey feedback, discussion forums, and social listening.
  • Onboard new agents quickly and with in-app learning options.
  • Optimize your service staff by allocating resources based on service trends that you can monitor in real-time.

Field Service: Empower your agents to create a better customer experience

Streamline scheduling, inventory management, and on-site efficiency. Offer quick and transparent communications and tracking functionalities to keep customers connected to your field agents.

Improve operational efficiency

  • Use the Internet of Things (IoT) to detect and solve problems faster.
  • Reduce costs using predictive maintenance.
  • Automate work orders, scheduling, and dispatching.

Empower field agents

  • Boost on-site efficiency by providing technicians with mobile access to home office data.
  • Understand customer preferences and history to deliver more personalized service.
  • Enable technicians to work hands-free by using innovative technology like mixed reality headsets.

Build trust

  • Provide customers with real-time technician location tracking and appointment reminders.
  • Share quotes, contracts, and scheduling information quickly and easily.
  • Let customers self-schedule appointments and monitor service with a customer portal.

Project Service Automation: Improve project profitability with integrated planning tools and analytics

Empower your employees to anticipate resource demand and work together with collaborative tools that are easy to tailor to your business.

Improve project management

  • Visualize costs and revenue using robust project planning capabilities and intuitive dashboards.
  • Anticipate resource demands and forecast project profitability.
  • Build customer trust using a customer-centric service delivery model.

Optimize resources

  • Make the most out of billable resources using real-time dashboards to measure utilization.
  • Improve skill-based assignments with a unified scheduling engine.
  • Empower service professionals to apply directly to relevant projects.

Increase productivity 

  • Foster collaboration across teams by integrating with Office 365 applications.
  • Simplify the contracts process and collaborate seamlessly with customers through a secure portal.
  • Submit, process, and approve time and expenses anytime, anywhere for faster customer billing.

CRM can cater to all industries and can be tailored to suit your business needs. Contact allonline365 today and let us guide you on the correct tools to use for your business. Customers are the heart of your business, make sure you are doing everything to make your business grow. Call  +27 (21) 205 3650 or email  info@allonline365.com.

Resources: Microsoft