Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 Release and Roadmap


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Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference Reveals CRM 2013

Microsoft’s WPC shared progress to date and a roadmap for Dynamics CRM’s future.

Dynamics CRM now counts 3.5M users and almost 40,000 customers, and show no signs of slow down. As of Q3, FY2013, the CRM solution achieved is 35th successive quarter of double digit growth, and in terms of new client adoption, 2 out of 3 new users are opting for the cloud.

Looking forward, Microsoft plans to release the next CRM upgrade as early as October. Code named Orion, the new version will be marketed as Dynamics CRM 2013. Four of the most touted updates include guided processes, integrated social networking (using Yammer), tablet support for iPad (and of course Surface) and future integration with MarketingPilot. The user interface (UI) will also include enhancements in terms of fewer clicks and pop-ups, new navigation support for both ‘touch and gesture’ and mouse-driven operation, more contextual processes and a continued UI evolution which advances the flat (2 dimensional) metro interface.

Subsequent CRM 2013 iterations are code-named Mira and Leo. Mira is scheduled for Q1, CY2014 and will include new integration with MarketingPilot, and seemingly bring MarketingPilot into the Dynamics CRM fold for the first time. While a Dynamics CRM to MarketingPilot connector is available today, the products are disjointed from a sales and support perspective. Leo is scheduled for Q2, CY2014 and intended to deliver advanced Customer Service capabilities, including more sophisticated case management, knowledge management and support for SLA’s and entitlement compliance.

Absent from most of the discussion was how NetBreeze will integrate to Dynamics CRM, and if and how Microsoft intends to remedy weakness in mobility. NetBreeze availability is still an outstanding question, and while Microsoft did suggest enhanced mobility, including future support for Android, no tentative dates or timeframes were available.

The continued CRM release cadence varies slightly for the cloud and on-premise products. CRM online will receive twice yearly releases, while CRM on-premise will be updated annually, with update roll-ups released about every 12 weeks.

New Dynamics CRM 2013 Pricing Model

Dynamics CRM Online has been priced at $44.00 per user per month since 2008, however, that’s about to change with Dynamics CRM 2013. The pricing model is changing in order to simplify pricing and bring parity between the online and on-premise versions.

Dynamics CRM Online pricing will use a tiered approach which assigns price commensurate with software scope. The three pricing levels include:

Professional at $65 per user per month and will include sales force automation, marketing and customer service. This is the traditional CRM suite and will be the most popular choice for most customers.

Basic at $30 per user per month and will include more limited sales, marketing and service for users who need to manage leads, accounts, contacts, cases and access custom applications or reporting.

Essential at $15 per user per month is intended for users who need to access to custom applications developed in house or by ISVs.

IMHO, the new online pricing model doesn’t simplify what has been the simplest online pricing model in the CRM software industry, but it does bring new flexibility which is particularly valuable to midmarket and enterprise customers. For example, unlike CRM competitors who require every user license to be the price of the most expensive license type, Dynamics CRM will permit customers to mix and match licenses for a significantly more cost effective investment.

Also, Microsoft will continue to include mobility with licensing or subscription fees. However, certain additional fees may be required for additional storage or non-production instances. Fees are likely to vary slightly based on geography.

On-premise CRM pricing will follow three comparable tiers. The Professional version is priced at $984 per user and $787 per device, the Basic version is $342 per user and $236 per device while the Essential version is $79 per user or device. The Microsoft Dynamics CRM Server is $3938 per instance.

MarketPilot Begins to Take Shape

Information about MarketingPilot has been extremely scarce since its acquisition in October 2012. Fortunately, Jamie Fiorda (Director, Worldwide Product Marketing for Dynamics CRM) and Jeff Marcoux (Senior Product Marketing Manager, Dynamics CRM) provided a glimpse of what’s coming.

Microsoft is categorizing MarketingPilot in what Gartner has labeled Integrated Marketing Management (IMM). As I’ve been doing marketing software reviews for the last several years, I found this interesting, as I personally would have positioned this product into the Marketing Resource Management (MRM) category as MRM is clearly the product’s focus and strength. I suspect Microsoft is looking to position MarketingPilot in the broadest sense, and more toward where the product is going not just where it is today.

MarketingPilot attempts to bridge the divide between B2C and B2B traditional and digital marketing programs. This will be a challenge as attempting to accommodate all marketing types runs the risk of doing none as thoroughly as competitors with greater focus—especially marketing software competitors catering to the high growth online campaigns and programs.

MarketingPilot’s strengths include Digital Asset Management, Marketing Resource Management and marketing budgeting/spend management. Its weakness is marketing automation. Customers seeking a marketing solution for digital lead acquisition, lead scoring, nurture marketing and lead transfer to sales should continue to consider marketing automation systems such as ClickDimensions, CoreMotives and Marketo—all of which are tightly integrated with Dynamics CRM.

In terms of target market, Marketing Pilot will pursue the same vertical markets as Dynamics CRM and marketing departments with 15 to 20 or more marketers. The product is also well designed for marketing agencies. MarketingPilot will not be available on-premise.

The marketing solution looks to be available as an integrated product available in 17 markets and 10 languages with the Mira release in Q1, CY2014. End

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Chuck Schaeffer
Chuck is the North America Go-to-Market Leader for IBM's CRM and ERP consulting practice. He is also enjoys contributing to his blog at


  1. Thanks Chuck.
    Your post was really informative.
    Looking forward for the next release of Dynamics CRM.


    Bhupendra Singh Dhanjal


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