Some of the best experiences I’ve had at Microsoft have been building new ecosystems and reviving existing ones.
Last April, the Business Applications team began interviews with ISVs to learn how we can better serve our community. In July, we announced the Business Applications ISV Connect program. Our systems launch in September enabled new co-marketing and co-selling activity linked to revenue sharing from partners and new incentives for Microsoft sellers to work with ISVs. We also invested in ISV-specific engineering efforts, an ongoing refresh of the AppSource marketplace, the launch of the Partner Center, and additional resources focused on ISV success across many teams. All of these efforts were combined to help reboot our Business Applications ecosystem. We like to think of it as pulling all the levers possible within the Microsoft engine to support a new initiative. With the key fundamentals in place to align interests and create momentum, we wanted to take a moment to provide you with an update on our collective progress.
Today, a few months after our operational launch, we’re very pleased by what we’ve seen so far. Over 900 partners have begun their enrollment in the program and more than 350 partners have already certified their applications into the AppSource marketplace, publishing more than 800 apps to date. We’ve reduced the time to certify and re-certify applications, engaging directly with hundreds of partners to help answer their questions and get feedback on how to improve our efforts including where to work the kinks out of the new processes and systems.
In addition to our strong focus on getting partners into the new program and their apps into AppSource, we’re working closely with our sales and marketing teams to help them take advantage of the refreshed and certified applications and the growing ISV momentum to support customers in their move to SaaS-based line of business applications.
Of course, every journey has its twists and turns, and we’re still solving the operational issues that come from retiring legacy systems and creating new motions across our many teams and regions around the world. When we don’t get it right, it’s all hands-on deck to try to figure out what happened and fix it as quickly as we can. We know there is more to do in this area, and our partners have been really helpful in understanding their challenges and giving us suggestions on how to improve; please keep these coming. The good news is that when the levers are pulled and the motions align, the results are exactly what we planned for with ISV Connect, a win-win-win across partners, customers, and Microsoft.
Here are just two of the examples of partners who’ve seen some early success with ISV Connect.
As an ISV, we feel like a valued member of the Microsoft community. We receive quality leads and have access to some amazing programs that accelerate our business and extend our reach globally. — Wim Geukens, Managing Director, VeriPark
Microsoft needs ISVs who have developed industry-specific solutions and deeply understand the needs of our mutual customers. VeriPark’s financial solutions were well-established on the .NET platform when they saw the opportunity to lead the industry shift to the cloud. They chose Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 platform and Azure to speed development while also providing the compliance and security that financial services customers require. The result was VeriTouch, a cloud-based CRM solution that gives financial institutions a 360 degree view of customer interactions, with new interfaces like chatbots, the ability to interface with call center applications, and personalized AI-driven recommendations.
The efficiencies of the Dynamics 365 platform have helped VeriPark achieve a 30 percent profit margin increase since launching VeriTouch. Even more importantly, VeriTouch customers like insurance agency Aksigorta have seen the benefits of the new system, handling a 35 percent increase in call volume and reducing complaint resolution time by 40 percent since deployment.
The AppSource marketplace is also an effective tool for Veripark. In their first year on the marketplace they received 200 qualified leads, and today more than 50 percent of their leads are produced through the Microsoft partnership.
“Microsoft is astutely aware of how the market is changing and we want to be a part of that. Simple reviewed multiple technology partners, but Microsoft’s focus on delivering true digital transformations, investment in Power Apps, and their collaborative global go-to-market approach clearly differentiated them”. — Aden Forrest, CEO, Simple
Simple helps customers make informed upstream marketing planning decisions. Based in Australia, Simple plans to become a global $100 million company within three years. They’re chasing a very big opportunity, and planning currently constitutes less than 0.1 percent of their marketing spend, but represents a $1 billion market opportunity in breaking silos across organizations and channels that prevent marketing teams from driving a return on their investment. Simple’s Intelligent Marketing Platform, built on Power Platform, provides a single common view across marketing activities and generates data-driven insights.
Simple spent four years and millions of dollars creating a solution on a competitor’s platform, then switched to Microsoft to develop a working solution in just months. The Power Platform reduced development time by 3x and provided native integrations for data analytics and AI.
“Our partnership with Microsoft has allowed us to change and deliver faster than we could ever have imagined. We believe through Microsoft we have a channel that is second to none.” — Aden Forrest, CEO, Simple
Given their goal to expand across markets, Simple also viewed Microsoft’s global reach as essential. The One Commercial Partner team in Australia accelerated Simple’s entry into the United States and Europe, allowing Simple to open offices in Chicago and London and bring on their first lighthouse customers. These relationships drive partner revenue across the ecosystem that helps everyone succeed.
It’s worth noting that both VeriPark and Simple have placed their apps into the premium tier of ISV Connect, which unlocks additional co-selling benefits for an additional 10 percent in revenue share. We use this revenue share to directly retire quota for our sellers when they co-sell an ISV’s solution, so everyone wins.
We’re in the midst of planning our improvements for the next version of ISV Connect that we’ll begin on July 1, 2020. We welcome feedback on how we can create more value for partners to drive innovation through their unique offerings, make use of Microsoft’s solutions, and extend their reach to more customers and markets.
Learn more about how you can benefit from the Microsoft Business Applications ISV Connect program.