An Overview of Dynamics 365 Wave 2 Release Plan.

Last month, Microsoft published the release plans for the next major update to Dynamics 365 and the Power Platform; Wave 2 Release, which will roll out from October 2019 through to March 2020. 

Within this article, we will provide an overview which highlights the key features and changes coming up, but if you’d like to learn more you can access the full 370-page release note document here. 

Wave 2 Release Dates

On August 2nd 2019, administrators will be able to gain early access and try the new features that will be a part of the October update, before they get enabled automatically. General availability deployment for the 2019 Release wave 2 then begins on October 1st 2019, with new features being released through to March 2020. Within the release plan documentyou will find a table that shows the enablement status for each feature. 

  • August 2nd, 2019: Early access available – Try the new features and capabilities before they get enabled automatically.
  • October 1st, 2019: General availability – Production deployment for the 2019 release wave 2 begins.

2019 Release Wave 2 Overview

The enhancements to Dynamics 365 applications include hundreds of new capabilities across the business process applications: 

A focus on Artificial Intelligence (AI) capabilities features heavily in the 2019 release wave 2 plans, to help organsiations accelerate their customer service, sales and marketing functions: 

  • Sales Insights: Empower teams with more foresight to enhance productivity and better predict outcomes throughout the sales process 
  • Customer Service Insights: Gain an actionable view into critical performance metrics, operational data, and emerging trends  
  • Virtual Agent for Customer Service: Enables organisations to create AI-powered chatbots that talk with customers, providing new opportunities to improve customer service  
  • Customer Insights: Better understand your customer data and leverage it for intelligent insights and actions 
  • Market Insights: Businesses can gather actionable insights based on what consumers say and how they feel about their brand and products 

Alongside AI, the 2019 release wave 2 also adds a whole new set of experiences to enhance employee productivity using mixed reality: 

  • Remote Assist: Empowers technicians to solve problems faster the first time 
  • Layout: Provides a new way for space planners to bring designs to life with confidence and speed 
  • Product Visualise: Enables salespeople to demonstrate the true potential of their products to their customers by harnessing the power of augmented reality on their mobile devices 

Key Features

The wave 2 release notes include a variety of new features across each application of Dynamics 365. Below is just an overview of the key features across Sales, Marketing and Customer Service. For more detail, view the full document here. 

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales

  • Business card scan

No more misplacing business cards. With this new feature, users will be able to scan business cards, then the scanner will analyse the card for relevant information and automatically populate the fields in a record.

Business Card Scanner - Dynamics 365

*Note: This feature is available in the Unified Interface only

  • Improved lead qualification experience

Optionally create an Account, Contact, and/or Opportunity upon the qualification of a Lead record. 

Lead qualification experience - Dynamics 365

*Note: This feature is available in both the legacy web client and the Unified Interface

  • Contextual email editor

Composing email has never been better in Dynamics 365 for Sales. Salespeople will be able to write email with the context of the record they are working on, navigate between records, have multiple active draft emails open simultaneously, preview the content before sending and add attachments, all opening within a non-blocking window.

*Note: This feature is available in the Unified Interface only

  • Simplified common sales workflows

Simplified workflows will introduce ease of access to commonly used components. 

*Note: This feature is available in the Unified Interface only

  • ‘Create & Add’ capability for multiple product lines

Creation of multiple product line items, which can be a repetitive task, is now streamlined with the new “Create & Add” capability. 

*Note: This feature is available in the Unified Interface only

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing

  • Email A/B testing

A/B Testing capability has now been built into Dynamics 365 for Marketing, allowing marketers to create alternative versions of a message and test each design on a subset of your audience.  

A/B testing in Dynamics 365 for Marketing
  • Layout editor

Visual email designer now provides a layout editor for designing multi-column layouts. This provides a quick and easy way to alter the appearance of email messages, which is a feature that marketers often look for.

Layout editor in Dynamics 365 for marketing

*Note: This feature is available in both the legacy web client and the Unified Interface

  • Quick Send

Sometimes marketers need to send out a quick email blast, which doesn’t require any behavioral triggers or follow-up automation. This new feature allows users to craft and send emails to a large audience in just a few clicks. 

  • Easy setup for subscription lists

Marketers can now work end-to-end with subscription lists throughout the marketing lifecycle, and will be available natively from the main navigator in the Dynamics 365 for Marketing app. 

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Customer Service

  • Improved timeline experience

Users will be able to see larger amounts of information associated with an entity (case, contact account, etc), without the need to scroll. 

  • Improved knowledge management experience – inline image enhancement

Knowledge authors will have an improved inline image experience in which they can directly copy, paste, and drag and drop images or select them from File Explorer and add them to knowledge articles. 

  • Enhanced search & rendering for knowledge management

Currently, knowledge base search control supports filtering only on status and language of articles. To provide a better knowledge search experience for users, this feature extends the filtering capability to other attributes. 

The Full 2019 Release Wave 2 Notes

Within this article we have given you an overview of some of the new features being rolled out across Microsoft Dynamics 365, however, there are plenty more. You can access the full document below… 

Download Release Notes

If you have any questions about the release, or you are on an older version of Dynamics 365 and would like to upgrade to get all of the features, please contact us for more information. 

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