Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales 2023 release wave 1 covers the new functionality that will be rolling out from April to September 2023. In this article, we’ll highlight key, upcoming features designed to enhance the administrator experience.
Many of the features becoming available in Dynamics 365 Sales will incorporate artificial intelligence (AI) into the sales process and have been designed to strengthen revenue intelligence, sales execution, and sales force automation. This release also includes a major addition from Microsoft called Copilot, harnessing the power of AI to help improve efficiencies and provide insights about customer relationships. These enhancements can provide admins with new capabilities to help sellers prioritize opportunities and work efficiently and effectively.
Configure Forecasts for Multiple Business Units
For organizations with multiple entities or business units, there are new tools in Dynamics 365 Sales to create unit-specific forecasts. Now, organizations will have a way to track forecasts from the unit level up to the enterprise or organizationwide level.
As an admin or forecast manager, you can:
- Configure forecasts for each entity/business unit, which can help your sales and leadership teams monitor and track the progress of each unit separately
- Set who can see each forecast
- Help sellers drill down into forecast details to see how they’re contributing
Adjust Forecast Values for Drill-Down Tables
With this enhancement, admins can easily adjust forecast values for drill-down entities directly in the forecast grid. As shown below, you can select the edit icon next to drill-down entities to edit the values (provided that manual adjustment privileges are enabled).
Help Improve Forecast Accuracy With Weekly & Yearly Forecasts
Organizations track their sales objectives at varying intervals and require the ability to forecast accordingly. With this new feature, admins can supplement quarterly and monthly forecasts with weekly and yearly forecasts. For organizations with shorter sales cycles, weekly recurrences can help sellers more accurately measure their sales goal progress. General availability of this feature will roll out in September.
Help Sellers Focus With an Enhanced Sales Accelerator Worklist
This new feature doesn’t need to be enabled by an admin—but here’s how admins can help sellers take advantage of the functionality. Often, sellers must navigate through multiple screens to accomplish tasks. Efficiencies can be gained with the new sales accelerator worklist, which contains all the activities sellers need to focus on along with AI-based recommendations on how to prioritize the activities. The prioritization recommendations assess what activities are likely to positively impact sales outcomes. Admins can adjust the view of worklist items and choose what details to display. Sellers also can customize the view if permissions are enabled by an admin.
New Sequence Preview
Sellers can use sequences to guide their activities and complete tasks. They have the option to link an existing sequence to a record or create a customized sequence. In digital selling, teamwork is crucial as multiple members collaborate to close a deal. For instance, an account executive may work on proposals while a software architect assists with implementation. The sequence preview feature can help team members work together effectively on a shared account or opportunity.
This new feature can help admins and entire teams:
- Find an overview of a sequence that shows the total number of steps, number of days spent, time required for completion, and more
- View steps and activities that are completed or upcoming
- See which team members are working on each step and activity
- Review completion and due dates of sequence steps
Automatically Assign Multiple Sequences to a Record
Many times, a sales opportunity involves multiple sales professionals. Having a defined sequence of tasks is important to avoid duplication. This new feature can help teams:
- Automatically assign multiple sequences to a record based on business rules
- Select a sequence owner based on the attributes of a record, while still allowing multiple sellers to execute different sequences for the same record, e.g., an Account record
- Apply rules and conditions to each sequence so that only relevant sequences are attached to a record, e.g., there may be an Account, Lead, or Opportunity record that meets a certain criterion to warrant multiple team members being involved—such as the value of an Opportunity exceeding a certain “Est. Revenue.” Then, extra steps may need to be completed by specific team members
Use Statistics to Help Improve Assignment Rules
Sales managers often spend a significant amount of time assigning leads and opportunities to the appropriate sellers. If seller assignments get delayed, this may lead to business loss or delayed deal closings. Automating seller assignments can help sales managers avoid delays and increase efficiency. When a sales manager or admin launches the assignment rules setup screen, the following statistics and actions will populate:
- The percentage of records created within the specified time frame that were automatically routed through assignment rules
- A rating of the effectiveness of each assignment rule based on the ratio of assigned to unassigned records, along with details about why unassigned records weren’t assigned
New Manager Dashboards
Admins now can leverage out-of-the-box dashboards to help coach sellers. The dashboards aggregate customer interaction and seller behavior data and can help sales teams assess the effectiveness of their sales strategies. This new feature becomes generally available in September.
In addition to existing sales dashboards, this new feature gives admins and sales managers the ability to view:
- Customer sentiment related to keyword and competitor mentions
- How brand messages are being perceived
- Insights about conversation patterns that lead to different deal outcomes
- A detailed collection of each person’s sales performance, including patterns that lead to closed-won opportunities
- Sales-specific filters, such as call time and length, seller, connected record, connected record status, campaign, and more
We hope these Dynamics 365 Sales 2023 wave 1 updates for admins can help your organization unlock new efficiencies. Learn more about upcoming release features from Microsoft.
Related reading: 2022 Wave 2: What's New for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales
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