Recently I attended the Dynamics 365 Saturday event in Stockholm and I have to say, what an excellent experience it was. People from all over the world congregated at the Microsoft offices in Stockholm, keenly awaiting their host, Gustaf Westerlund, to deliver the opening keynote.
These events are so important for the community because they are often the only opportunities some of the community members really have to interact with other customers, partners, ISVs and Microsoft employees. As the Dynamics and Power Platform community grows, the need for interaction and collaboration grows. At Hitachi solutions, we understand this and often take the opportunity to attend and share what we have learnt in our journey with the Microsoft product stack and the people we work with.
The crowd was great! There were many enthusiastic people in the audience who were getting involved in the sessions, looking for information and really testing all of the speakers’ knowledge. You can find the list of sessions and speakers HERE.
One big reason I really enjoyed Dynamics 365 Saturday event was the different layers and levels of content being shared across the sessions. The sessions were split into three tracks, these being:
Applications (Dynamics 365 CE), Dev (Dynamics 365 CE) and Business & Project Management. This gave participants the opportunity to stick to a single, themed, track or weave between tracks. I had decided at the very beginning I wanted to experience as much as I possibly could squeeze into one day. I went to at least 1 session from each track. I needed to get a flavour for absolutely everything.
There was a plethora of information and content being shared between speakers and passionate attendees. Everything from Microsoft Portals, useful administrative tools and Social Engagement to developing your own XrmToolBox tools was being shared. A massive subject which came up continuously was Microsoft’s Power Platform.
I had the pleasure of running two sessions. One in the Application track and one in the Dev track. The sessions were:
- Power Platform – How it all fits together
- Building your first Canvas App with CDS, and Azure
The first presentation focused on the different elements of the Power Platform and the way it all works together. Many Dynamics 365 users often worry a bit about this because it seems so large and complicated, but it really isn’t once you have wrapped your head around the different technologies. To highlight the way the different elements of the technology worked together I included a Roadside Assist demonstration that was created during the PowerApps & CDS Hackathon Those Dynamics Guys and Hitachi Solutions Europe hosted together.
My second presentation consisted of some of the “Do’s and Don’ts” around building your first Canvas App with your customer. I followed the presentation with the following:
- Adding several fields to a custom entity in the Common Data Service (CDS)
- Importing some data
- Creating a new canvas app
- Connecting the Canvas app to the CDS
- Adding in the Azure translation service to the app
- Publishing the app
The actual canvas app I created with the little model driven app solution, including data is available for download. All you need to do is register HERE and you will be sent a link. It’s really basic but highlights what can be built in under 30 minutes. It’s important to remember that this is strictly an example and should be used as an example, not as a live app. It will also need to be connected to your own Azure translation service account.
One of the key things I always take away from events as successful as this is the urge to collaborate and share information. An interesting approach I have always had is that the bigger the community, the more opportunity there is for all parties within the community to grow. From a partner perspective, It stops becoming about just winning deals and starts becoming about partnership with our customers, Microsoft and the ISVs we work with. A unified strategy to change the way people work and help as many people in the Dynamics ecosystem as possible achieve success.
All in All, Dynamics 365 Saturday was a fantastic event and a great opportunity to network with this amazing Dynamics and Power Platform community that we all have grown to know and learn from. A MASSIVE thank you to the sponsors of the event and to Hitachi Solutions for allowing me to attend.