Marketing with Microsoft Dynamics CRM – Part 3

As a part of our Project to adopt and use Dynamics CRM 2015 out-of-the-box, we installed and configured the Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Outlook add-in on our client machines.  This gave us a way to use Dynamics CRM functionality within Outlook.   It is a powerful tool which tracks and synchronizes Contacts, Tasks and Appointments with Dynamics CRM 2015.

If you are like us, you probably have a lot of old Outlook Contacts that you haven’t kept up with through the years.  These can be business cards picked up along the way or people you worked with once and not since.  In my case, th…

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Marketing with Microsoft Dynamics CRM – Part 2

Our objective was to see if we could manage our sales effort and use Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2015 as a stand alone, out-of-the-box marketing solution.  Our goal was to use built in email and phone campaign functionality.  We wanted to see if we could use Dynamics CRM without third party add-ins or services like Constant Contact, or Mail Chimp.  Another important criteria is that we wanted to avoid solutions that required customization, .Net Programming or database modification code. There is no technical revelation to what we did, just simple data manipulation using Dynamics CRM feature…

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Cloud Computing Today and Tomorrow

Cloud Computing is all the buzz.  The attached presentation shows how we got here, where we are now, and what the future may hold in the realm of Cloud Computing.  This slide deck was adapted and presented several times to diverse audiences including IT Professionals, Students, Public Sector Professionals, Scientists and Engineers.

The tone of these presentations was, for the most part, anecdotal.  This information is based on our experience as both a Cloud Provider and Consumer.  The presentation was intended to be visual and not bullet point oriented. Some notes on the progressio…

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Marketing with Microsoft Dynamics CRM – Part 1

Microsoft Dynamics CRM presents great opportunities for the management of sales, service and marketing functions.  The platform is highly configurable and robust in its feature set.  The platform is easy to work with and is quite usable out of the box for critical functions.  However, we found some “holes” in our use of the platform that required workarounds.  I will discuss each of the issues in more detail and our resolutions to those issues in upcoming posts.  Perhaps our approach to working with Dynamics CRM might provide insights for others.  For now, an introduction:

1) Work wit…

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Regulatory Compliance with SharePoint

Introduction – Regulatory Compliance

This post describes how Microsoft SharePoint® can be applied to manage common regulatory compliance requirements in companies of all sizes.  Using SharePoint avoids proprietary system lock-in.  With SharePoint Online, a solution is easy to deploy by eliminating up-front costs for IT Infrastructure and Software Licenses.

A Technology Advantage

As a platform for quality applications, SharePoint can integrate and streamline the flow of information throughout your enterprise for more efficient collaboration and smoother regulatory compliance.

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Office 365 NextGen Portals – Opportunities in Knowledge Management

At the recent Ignite conference, Microsoft unveiled their development of upcoming Office 365 “NextGen” portals, one of several new CMS-like concepts being included in Office 365/SharePoint. These new “ready-to-go” portals include concepts like the Knowledge Management portal (codename “Infopedia”). These portals are a cross between a team site and a publishing site: you can roll them out quickly and immediately create sites and pages, however your customization options are limited.

NextGen portals, according to Kashman (senior product manager in the Office 365 group), are intelligent by

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SharePoint 2016 Roadmap and Features

During last week’s Ignite conference in Chicago, Microsoft announced the timeline for SharePoint 2016 delivery and also reviewed enhancements included in the new version.

According to the following chart presented during an Ignite session, Microsoft plans to deliver a public beta of SharePoint Server 2016 in the fourth quarter of this year. The product is planned for “general availability” release in the second quarter of 2016, but a “release candidate” version will precede that final product. Here is the SharePoint 2016 roadmap:

SharePoint 2016 Roadmap and Features

Watch the “Evolution of SharePoint” Ignite session, pr…

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Connecting to a SSAS 2012 Database in Online Mode

When working with SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS), it is sometimes convenient to be able to connect to a database in “Online Mode” which means that every change you make and save is immediately saved to the SSAS database, as opposed to having to explicitly deploy the changes.

In SQL Server 2008 R2, connecting to a SSAS database in online mode was very simple:

1. Launch the SQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio (i.e the VS 2008 Shell for BI project templates commonly known as BIDS).

2. Select Open off the File menu

3. Specify the server and database name, press…

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Reference Architecture for IVR Integration

The diagram shows the recommended architecture for IVR integration applications. It is modeled on a Services Oriented Architecture (SOA). A feature of the design is isolation of the major layers of the architecture around a set of business functions which are implemented as web services. These services perform the data access and external functions required of the system.

Key benefits include the isolation of the IVR script from any data architecture, business function or collaboration service changes. IVR programming is implemented specifically to perform the call flow function in a pure a…

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  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Microsoft Office 365
  • Microsoft SharePoint
  • Microsoft Windows Azure