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Microsoft Power Platform Blog

Microsoft Power Platform provides a low-code platform for reporting, workflow, automation, and form development. With applications like Power BI, Power Automate, and Power Apps, the platform can be used to analyze data, automate operations, and develop apps. As the use of Microsoft Power Platform increases, organizations need a mechanism to scale solutions, support makers, and ensure compliance. The best tool to get started is establishing a Center of Excellence (CoE).

Microsoft is enabling partners to help you set up CoE. Contact your partner today to see if you qualify. Learn more about the CoE Starter Kit.

Microsoft Partners can learn more about FY22 Business Applications partner activities.

What is Center of Excellence and why do you need it?

A CoE is a collection of tools to help you develop a company-wide Microsoft Power Platform adoption strategy to spur rapid application development, support makers, and align around company-wide business goals rather than individual departments. A CoE is important because it is designed to drive innovation, improvement, and to serve as a central function to break down geographic and organizational siloes.

CoE helps with managing three essential aspects of adopting Microsoft Power Platform:

  • Administration: It is important to establish clear governance guidelines to reduce the risk of shadow IT. Manage how makers are using databases, connectors, and permissions. Streamline duplicates and shared apps, archive unused apps, transfer ownership when makers leave the company, etc. Having these clear guidelines minimizes overburdening IT while enabling innovation. CoE dashboard has admin center capabilities to manage permissions, set rules for data access, APIs, and connectors.
  • Operations: Orchestration of people processes and technology. CoE dashboard provides a full view of what apps are being used, who is using them, and how often they are being used. Low code platform empowers businesses to build apps by people who understand business at a fraction of the cost with low code. With the growing maker movement, businesses are building more shadow apps that must be managed to ensure success. CoE starter kit also has pre-built templates for enabling best practices.
  • Nurture: Enable and empower makers. Who is involved in building the Microsoft Power Platform community in your organization? What training and support is needed? CoE is the first step toward encouraging greater creativity and innovation across the company by allowing business units to digitize and automate their operations while yet retaining the appropriate degree of central supervision and governance. You may find low-code enthusiasts in business groups, functional teams, operations, or even field teams. It is important to identify and nurture your community according to their specific role:
    • Champions empower the maker community by offering expert help and ongoing mentoring to internal makers. You should plan for training these trainers to keep them current on the latest and the greatest.
    • Organizational change agents create awareness, facilitate classroom training or hackathons, distribute demos or templates, and create success stories.
    • Developers migrate legacy applications, create new app templates, and build architecture designs.
    • Operations and engineering automation enable self-service guardrails for using connectors, APIs, data entities, and are responsible for metrics and monitoring usage.

Whether your organization is just getting started with low-code or has already been on a low-code journey for some time, a CoE will ensure your organization has Microsoft Power Platform success.

Screenshot of Center of Excellence (CoE) Starter Kit dashboard

How companies are leveraging Center of Excellence

  • T-Mobile, leveraged Microsoft Power Platform to empower their employees to develop solutions themselves to help the company with everything from device promotion approvals to store closure management in response to COVID-19.
  • Toyota deployed Microsoft Power Apps and empowered employees to take charge of their own app development requests, leading to more than 400 apps within the organization.

How can you get started?

Depending on where you are in your low-code adoption journey, your partner can help you establish Center of Excellence, or even conduct other adoption workshops such as Envisioning, Admin in a day, Legacy app assessment, or support planning. Contact your partner to get started.

Microsoft Partners can learn more about FY22 Business Applications partner activities.

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