All about Licensing of Dynamics 365. A Guide for Dynamics CRM online Customers

This post is for Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online customers to share more detail about the new licensing structure for Microsoft Dynamics 365.



On 1 November Microsoft Dynamics CRM evolved into Microsoft Dynamics 365.

From this date, all new customer registrations will be activated as Dynamics 365.

Existing Dynamics CRM Online customers will immediately get access to some of the new Dynamics CRM benefits that are being introduced but the main changes won’t be seen until the expiry of their existing agreement. At this point, their service will migrate to Microsoft Dynamics 365.

Before we get into the detail of the licensing changes it’s important to note that existing Dynamics CRM Online systems will work exactly as before.

You may have read that a new Common Data Model (CDM) is being introduced. This is a key capability of the entire Microsoft Dynamics 365 platform enabling new applications to be built more quickly and data shared more easily. In the future Dynamics 365 data will be replicated directly in CDM utilizing Microsoft Flow and Powerapps.

However, there will not be a mass platform upgrade upon migrating from Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online to Dynamics 365.

Currently supported Microsoft Dynamics CRM plug-ins and integrations will not stop working and the underlying processes including sales and service will continue to be available and will be invested in by Microsoft.

If you’ve already received a licensing quote for Dynamics 365 and compared this to the price of your current CRM Online subscription you may find that the total price represents an increase in cost, it might be somewhat cheaper, or perhaps the price is roughly the same.

Also, it is worth noting that existing Dynamics CRM Online customers are entitled to transitional Dynamics 365 pricing for 3 years.

To evaluate the true value of Dynamics 365 you should also assess the wider changes to the Microsoft Dynamics licensing model because this differs in several important areas as we move from Dynamics CRM into the new era of Dynamics 365.

In recent years, the footprint of Microsoft Dynamics CRM steadily increased with the release of modules such as Social Engagement, Field Service, Voice of the Customer and Project Service to name just four.

The addition of these and other releases has seen Dynamics CRM licensing plans grow ever more complex with a proliferation of add-on options and rules.

Microsoft licensing documents are never the easiest to read so in this post we’ve highlighted a selection of what we consider to be the most important changes compared to the Dynamics CRM licensing model to help you better review Microsoft Dynamics 365, and select the best licensing options for each user.


What’s New in Dynamics 365 Licensing

In comparison to CRM Online, Microsoft Dynamics 365 offers:

Simplified Licensing

The four licensing layers of Dynamics CRM Online are replaced with just two, FULL users and LIGHT users (see below).

Includes Non-Production Licence

With CRM Online only customers with 25 or more users received a non-production instance. As a result, customers with fewer than 25 users either had to publish their customisations directly on their live instance, or pay an add-on cost for a sandbox.

With the arrival of Dynamics 365, 1 x non-production instance is available as default enabling all administrations to test updates separate from their live CRM instance.

Increased Cloud Storage

By default Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online offers 5 GB cloud storage per instance with larger sites receiving increased capacity on the basis of 2.5 GB extra per 20 Pro licences.

At this default level, which has to cover all CRM users, many customers have needed to purchase additional storage to add a further cost layer to their subscription.

With Microsoft Dynamics 365 the default capacity is doubled to 10 GB and it is now more easy to accrue additional storage. This increases at the rate of 5 GB per x 20 Dynamics 365 full licences.

Microsoft previously placed a maximum of 50 GB for free storage. This will no longer apply enabling sites with large user volumes to accrue ever increasing levels of default cloud data storage

Furthermore, additional storage costs are reduced compared to Dynamics CRM Online.

Includes Web Portal

Microsoft recently begun offering integrated web portals at an add-on cost to the base Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online subscription price.

Integrated portals for Microsoft Dynamics feature templates for customer service, partner support, community engagement and employee self-service.

One portal is now included with each Microsoft Dynamics 365 subscription by default enabling all customers to increase scale by deploying one of these four defined templates at no additional monthly cost.

Includes Social Engagement

If ever there was a service where Microsoft’s licensing rules got way too complicated it was Microsoft Social Engagement.

Dynamics 365 ‘democratizes’ social engagement making the full functionality of Social Engagement available to all subscribers.

As a result, subject to the usual security permissions, full Dynamics 365 users can add multiple social streams, connect Social Engagement to Microsoft Dynamics and trigger automated actions as part of their default entitlement.

Full Knowledge Capabilities

Similarly, knowledge management and sharing capabilities differed depending on which Dynamics CRM Online licence you held.

This is now simplified with Microsoft Dynamics 365 giving all users these capabilities in a single fully integrated application that reflects more IP originating from Microsoft’s earlier Parature acquisition.

Includes Voice of the Customer 

We were thrilled with the release of Voice of the Customer which added powerful survey capabilities to Dynamics CRM Online.

For Dynamics 365 everyone gets access to Voice of the Customer at no additional cost.

If you are already paying for an external survey tool like Survey Monkey, or considering a new integrated survey tool, Voice of the Customer is now a far more appealing and highly affordable option.

Supports Device Licensing

Dynamics CRM is licenced on a named user basis requiring each individual to have their own unique login.

Dynamics 365 business applications recognise that individuals often share devices and may only need light usage.

That’s especially useful in scenarios where several individuals share a single workstation to access the system from a front desk such as a bank, hotel or retail store.

Comparing Licence Types

As noted above, there are two Dynamics 365 licence types for FULL or LIGHT usage.

Team Members (Light Users)

Team Member licensing provides light usage across all the Dynamics 365 apps.

With this option, individuals have read / write access for processes that include Accounts, Contacts, Activities, Knowledge articles as well as Custom Entities. Team members can also submit time and expenses entries and utilise the interactive service hub for knowledge entries.

Team Members can consume data and reports (subject to user permission setting) across all applications.

Please note, this licence type does not include edit and create capabilities for processes that include Leads, Opportunities, Cases, Quotes and Marketing Lists.

The Team Members licence is an attractively low price option to connect more people throughout a business across a series of shared apps giving them light access usage in line with their job roles.

Apps and Plans (Full Users)

Where full usage is needed including read / write capabilities of Sales Leads, Opportunities, Cases and Marketing Lists choose either an individual Dynamics 365 App or the cost efficiencies of a Plan.

Users can choose one of the Dynamics CRM APPS defined by their job role.

  • Sales
  • Customer Service
  • Field Service
  • Project Service Automation

+ a dedicated new Marketing app will follow in 2017.

Purchasing an individual app also includes Team Member licensing enabling users to consume and report on data across all the other Dynamics 365 business apps.

For instances where users require functionality across multiple apps Dynamics 365 PLANS provide greater flexibility and considerable cost efficiency. If an individual user needs full access to more than one app a Plan will always represent better value.

Plans are designed to fit specific user roles giving full across the entire Dynamics 365 offering.

For example, a customer service agent who handles cases may also need to issue sales quotes for requirements that fall outside of routine support. In this instance the best value will be to purchase a Dynamics 365 Plan as this will provides full access to the sales and project service apps, as well as the other apps in the 365 offering.

It is also important to note that all of these options can be mixed and matched.

Within an organisation some users can be licensed with Plans that provide them with full read / write access across all Dynamics 365 apps. Other users may be licensed with individual apps that fit their specific job role e.g. sales and project service, and there will be users who only require light usage are able to share and consume data with entry-level priced Team Member licensing.

Mix and Match Dynamics 365 Licence Types

A Closer Look at Dynamics 365 Apps

Before looking at each individual app we should begin with a summary of what they all include, namely:

  • Read / write access that includes Accounts, Contacts, Activities, Knowledge and Custom Entities
  • Full Microsoft Social Engagement
  • Non-Production Instance
  • 1 x Integrated Self-Service Web Portal
  • Voice of the Customer surveys
  • Powerapps – point and click solution to build integrated mobile apps
  • Advanced analytics and machine learning
  • Mobile offline
  • Each app also includes Team Member capabilities to read data across all Dynamics 365 apps

Sales App

The Dynamics 365 Sales application includes the same the core functionality as Dynamics CRM Online with the exception of the service model including case management (this is included in the Customer Service App – see below).

As implied, the sales app is for anyone working in a sales role and will also be appropriate to marketing users. This provides access via desktop, tablet, mobile and via Outlook to processes that include: Leads, Sales Quotes, Price Lists, Opportunities, Marketing Lists, Campaigns and Quick Campaigns.

Customer Service App

Featuring the service capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online this app is designed for any users working in a customer service role.

Functions and processes included are: Case Management, Cases, Entitlements, Service Level Agreements, Unified Service Desk, Resources, Service Queues.

Project Service Automation App

The recently introduced project service solution developed by Microsoft is designed for users in a project management or resource management role.

This app includes: Project Estimates, Gantt Chart, Approve Project Expenses, Project Contracts, Manage Project Resources and Resource Competencies.

As noted above, users that only need to submit time and expense entries can do so with the Team Member licence.

Field Service App

Designed for any users working in a field technician or field scheduler role this app features: Work Order Management, Schedule Board, Field Service Invoices, Work Hour Management, Inventory Management, Territory Management

Marketing App

At the time of writing this post Microsoft has yet to share precise details of its marketing app but more detail will be released later this year. At this time we understand that Adobe Marketing Cloud will be a preferred solution.

As stated above the legacy marketing features that Microsoft Dynamics CRM users are familiar with including marketing lists are included with the Sales app, or Plan, and these will continue to integrate with external marketing services like Click Dimensions and dotmailer in the same way as before.


How Do CRM Licences Map to Dynamics 365?

Before switching from Dynamics CRM Online to Dynamics 365 you should carry out an audit to confirm what functionality each user needs to select the most appropriate Microsoft Dynamics 365 option. Also, you may be able to identify if any of the new 365 licence types, especially Team Members, enables you to connect more people to your customers and business processes for a lower rate.

Migrating CRM Online PRO Licences

The most frequently used Pro licence can be mapped to a Dynamics 365 licence in several ways so these options will need to be carefully considered for each user.

The Sales or Customer Service apps will be the default choice for users who work in these respective job role functions.

For those users that need broader functionality that covers 2 or more apps a 365 Plan will be the best choice.

Although an individual user would not realistically need full access to every single Dynamics 365 function the Plan option is designed for people with bespoke user requirements that don’t fit the defined apps.

For example, an individual might principally work in a sales role and as a result they require sales management functions but they also get involved in the delivery of project work and need some of these functions too, they might even need some Customer Service features too. In this instance a Plan will always represent the best value which represents an incremental price upgrade from the cost of a single Dynamics 365 app.

Migrating CRM Online ENTERPRISE Licences

The Enterprise level for CRM Online includes Voice of the Customer, full Social Engagement and Microsoft Dynamics Marketing.

With Voice of the Customer and Microsoft Social Engagement now available with all Dynamics CRM apps and Dynamics Marketing to be withdrawn from sale either the individual Sales or Customer Service app may suffice for Enterprise users. However, for users requiring the full functionality Plan 1 will be the best value.

Microsoft CRM Online BASIC Licences

CRM Online Basic licences offer reduced functionality for users that don’t need the fuller feature set of Dynamics CRM Pro.

As a result, the Dynamics 365 Team Member licence will likely be the most appropriate option for Basic licence users at a lower price.


Original Author: preact For more related updates. Follow them.

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