Microsoft Releases Dynamics SL 2011 ERP
Microsoft announced the general availability of its Dynamics SL 2011 enterprise resource planning solution late last week.
The low-key announcement, made on April 1 (April Fools Day), wasn't a joke, but it was very brief. Microsoft likely will get more talkative closer to its product launch events, which will start as early as April 10 in various U.S. cities. The ERP solution has been available for Microsoft's partners to download as of April 4.
The improvements in the new Microsoft Dynamics SL 2011 product include the use of controls common to Microsoft Business Solutions products, a new "quick query" feature, plus Web services support using the Windows Communication Foundation .NET Framework, among others, according to Jeff Wallis, a Microsoft Dynamics product unit manager, as described in a Microsoft partner blog post. This release is also newly integrated with Microsoft Project Server 2010.
The enhancements in Dynamics SL 2011 resulted from a customer and partner collaboration, which was carried out through an advisory board. Changes were overseen by the board throughout the product's lifecycle, according to Microsoft.
Microsoft has set up a campaign to assist its partners in the form of two promotional plans, which are being offered to small-to-medium U.S. customers. One plan is called "Extending the Reach for Existing Customers" (offered between April 1 and Dec. 22, 2011); the other plan is "Extending the Reach for New Customers" (offered between April 1 and June 24, 2011).
The first program offers discounts for "Microsoft Dynamics Light Users or Microsoft Dynamics Business Portal for Microsoft Dynamics SL" customers. The second program is for "Microsoft Dynamics Light Users for Microsoft Dynamics SL." A Microsoft partner blog post explains the nuances here.
Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.