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Discovery and Planning

Microsoft Dynamics 365 and the Power Platform
Hi, In this module, we’re going to have a discussion about discovery and planning. This is Mike Smith. And this is Juliet. OK, hey, Julie. As a functional consultant, what are the kind of key items to be concerned with regarding discovery and planning? Well, Mark, there are so many items actually. A functional consultant really should be involved in creating and validating documentation all along the way and engaging directly with the customer. When it comes to documentation, what type of things are important? Documentation takes so many forms.
Sometimes that means that we are creating mock-ups of proposed forms, maybe some dashboards, or other application components that might look like wire frames and mock-up using software, or my personal favourite, I love to do the mock-ups with whiteboarding. For me, that’s the very easiest way to do brainstorming. Yeah, great idea. And what about determining the need for customizations or out-of-the-box features? That’s a very important part of the process actually. A functional consultant might be the one performing a fit gap analysis. And then build out a combination of out-of-the-box features and customised functionality. And at the same time, maybe be the ones confirming things like internationalisation needs, like additional languages and currencies and so on.
OK, so when it comes to engaging with customers, what does that look like? To me, engaging with the customer is an ongoing part of any successful project. Even if all of your stakeholders are internal to your organisation, building consistent feedback loops and having that analysis on an ongoing basis is so valuable. Offering up your technical documentation for review, proof of concepts of your new ideas, all of those things that you buy in from your stakeholders, the users, and we need that user adoption to ensure that we have a successful new platform at the end. Yeah, sounds good. So what type of things should we be asking our stakeholders? We could do a whole class just on that, don’t you think?
Mhm, for real. But there are so many things. So here are just a handful of things maybe to start this conversation. So you could ask questions like, if everything goes according to plan, what does this look like at the end? Then ask who might be involved within that organisation? Who are your key stakeholders. Help identify management, project management. Who is in charge of change management? Who’s going to be using the system in a day-to-day basis. How do we include all of them as stakeholders in this discovery and planning? Yeah, good. Anything else? Yeah, so I think that one of the most successful components of any implementation has got to be that communication.
You need to establish right off the bat inbound-and-outbound communication and how to share that information, what kind of documentation needs need to happen, set up meetings where you’re checking in with one another often. Don’t ever underestimate the value of communication on a project like this. Excellent. Thanks, Julie. Thank you, Mark.

In the previous steps, we went through an overview of the Power Platform, we looked at how to configure the platform and the requirements to create applications. Now, let’s look at what’s required for Discovery and Planning.

In this video, Julie Yak and Mark Smith discuss the process for Discovery and Planning.

A functional consultant should be involved in creating and validating documentation all the way whilst engaging directly with the customer

Join the discussion

Documentation takes so many forms. In your opinion, why do you think the discovery and planning stage is important? What are the key activities that should happen in this stage?

Use the discussion area below to let us know your thoughts. Remember to engage with peers – share an experience, ask a question or leave a comment. When you are ready, click on Mark as complete and we will move on to the next step which is a summary of the Power Platform.

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Dynamics 365: Using Power Platform Applications

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