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A Portal Story: True Lead-to-Cash Using Dynamics 365 and Power Platform

By Adam Hallbeck | April 17, 2020

Keeping their nationwide network of sales reps informed and enabling them to turn quotes into orders quickly proved to be a challenge for one large manufacturing business. The company has an internal sales force that works with an outside dealer network who ultimately sell to the end user. Their projects are all engineer-to-order so collaboration between the dealers, the sales team, the engineers and manufacturing is paramount to their success. They turned to Stoneridge Software for a solution that would help them more effectively communicate part availability and manufacturing lead times, put the customer information into the sales reps’ hands, and speed up the process from quote to approval to production

Power Apps Portal

Understanding their business needs, the team at Stoneridge went to work building a Power Apps portal that would meet the manufacturing company’s needs immediately. Exposing information from both Dynamics 365 Finance and Sales, data on each customer was managed from the portal where each sales rep could access information on their accounts, contacts, prior orders, outstanding quotes and more.

That information then flowed directly back into both the ERP and CRM system, ensuring the most up to date, accurate information was available not only to portal users but also across all departments from accounting and internal ops to the production floor.

Using the standard presales process that Dynamics 365 Sales offers out of the box, the Stoneridge team was able to retrofit those steps into a process that truly fit the specific needs of the manufacturing company. Now when a customer has an order request, the sales rep can start a project directly in Power Apps Portal and compile a design concept unique to the customer’s needs, laying out each iteration of design and development stages from start to finish. The customer is then given access to that information through their own portal login and can submit design or order changes, and approve submitted project and quote estimates.

Once a quote is approved in the portal, the sales rep is automatically notified and that quote is turned into an order in the system and routed to production without any required manual process from the sales team.

Once routed to production, the work order includes manufacturing and fulfillment instructions, including shipping and distribution details. Each customer can have multiple addresses within the system, with different orders being routed to a specific address. Prior to having an end-to-end solution, the manufacturing company struggled with managing multiple, reusable address types and locations for each customer. Now, it’s easy to know the exact coordinates for each shipping address or location and which to distribute the order to.

One-stop for Sales

Sales reps can also use the portal to service everything they sell – whether it is providing replacement parts, warranty services, or repeat orders – everything can be easily managed directly in the portal.

Reduction in Required Licenses

Another added benefit to the manufacturing company was the ability to reduce the number of Dynamics 365 licenses required. Before implementing Power Apps Portals, each sales rep required an individual license for D365. Now with the portal, the licensing requirement is eliminated and all sales reps and customers can access information from D365 through the portal without a purchased license.

The day to day operations for all sales rep actions now run completely through Power Apps Portals, which can be accessed any time, anywhere.

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