Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement or ExpandIT?

Written by Austin Brown, MBA & CMMC RP

When I was fresh out of college as an undergrad, I worked for a company that sold maintenance, repair, and operation (MRO) products to multi-family housing and office buildings. We essentially sold anything you could buy from a Home Depot or Lowes, but with fewer options and in mass quantity. Cabinets, doorknobs, flooring, appliances, screws, anything you needed, we could get you.

We had 11 warehouses on the East Coast, and I’d drive over 100 miles every day between Alexandria/ Arlington, VA, Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, sometimes to Philadelphia, PA and West Palm Beach, FL, making multiple stops to just about every apartment building in between to take measurements and orders. Some stops would just be a countertop or a bathroom vanity, some stops would be full remodels of multiple apartments and I’d need to schedule crews to install. I’d either drive home or back to the office to create CADs and quotes for 10-20 customers. I loved every bit of it.

The point of explaining this: using a CRM was not a good option for our sales team.

To do the CADs and the quotes took a good bit of time. We had hundreds of routine customers and leadership at the company was well-aware of their needs.

If I had to go in and create an opportunity in a CRM, complete the entire sales process designed in CRM, and then push that back into the ERP for purchasing, delivery, and execution, I would be working a lot more. In some cases, using a full CRM stack may not be necessary.

Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement applications are great for what I do now with KTL Solutions; we use it for every customer. However, if you are a company using it for 10-20 customers each day for routine items and needing to schedule installations or service work, ExpandIT is a great solution to integrate with Dynamics 365 Business Central. Business Central can manage the quoting, inventory, warehouse transfers, purchasing and anything necessary for this business model.

ExpandIT will fill the gap for scheduling, approval workflows, service requests, planning; everything I needed and wished we had. Microsoft Dynamics 365 CE does offer a Field Service application which does all of this. With ExpandIT’s solution, it will cover all the field service requirements for a lower cost and faster deployment.

Please contact me at abrown@ktlsolutions.com if you would like to learn more!


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