Arbela Blog
Back to Blog Index

Understanding the Microsoft Ecosystem and Its Advantages - Part 1

By Amit Raina, Director of Strategic Engagement, Arbela Technologies

Digital business transformation, in today’s hi-tech marketplace has become a business reality. For our businesses to create value for customers, it is imperative that our evolving business and rapidly changing technology landscape adopts transformation to create value for the customer. Therefore, every business today must transform to address new competitive forces and create new value. Digital business transformation, if done strategically, brings a deep understanding of customer, thereby, enabling you to design product and services that best meet their needs, streamline operations through application that improves responsiveness, service levels, and reduce costs, and delivers more empowered teams by providing them the right information at the right time.

There are 4 pillars of digital transformation that allows to engage with customers, optimize operations, empower employees, and transform products and services. Microsoft Dynamics 365 leverages digital transformation provides deep understanding of enterprise business to assist to digitally transform and at the same time achieve success in our own terms. When customer data is built into feedback loop, enterprises can deliver more effective and personalized products and services.

The digital feedback loop allows to connect data together and apply intelligence to get a deep understanding of business which includes sales, customer service, customer acquisition, and back-end operations. The Microsoft Power Platform can be used to integrate applications with existing systems to derive powerful business insights, and these insights turn into actions, these actions then enable better decisions and transformative processes to reimagine our engagement with our customers and generate greater value for them. To understand how this is done, let’s try and understand the Microsoft Ecosystem that leverages the Digital Feedback Loop.

The Microsoft Ecosystem is geared towards enterprise customers. And if you are an enterprise organization, Microsoft has created a powerful ecosystem with new cloud infrastructure and services. With Microsoft enterprise products and cloud services being so tightly integrated, it provides strong incentives for business. One would ask the question; how does it provide those incentives? Well, for example, OneDrive for business ties into SharePoint, whereas Teams and Skype integrates with Outlook, and Dynamics 365 Business Apps such as Sales, Customer Service, Field Service, Finance & Operations integrates and pulls data from Azure AD. So, with Microsoft’s investment in Azure, success with Office 365, and with an array of services such as machine learning, Internet of Things (IoT), cognitive services, etc. will put you as leaders in the digital ecosystem and thereby providing a strong business incentive.

Digital transformation may sound like a popular buzzword, but the fact is as organizations embrace technology to cater for a better customer experience, they need to be able to drill down on business facts to make best decisions for their businesses. It is therefore critical for companies to understand ecosystems to put customers first in front of their business operations. So, let’s get to understand the term “Ecosystem.”

Understanding the Term Ecosystem

The term “ecosystem” was coined by British ecologist Arthur Tansley in 1935 to recognize the integration of the biotic community and its physical environment as a fundamental unit of ecology within a hierarchy of physical systems that span the range from atom to universe. Or in simple terms, when we talk about animals and plants, we also must talk about where they live and function.

(Courtesy: https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/agricultural-and-biological-sciences/tansley)

The word ecosystem thereafter has evolved. James F. Moore, a business strategist who studies co-evolution in social and economic systems pioneered the “Business Ecosystem” approach to study networks of organizations that together constitute a system of mutual support and that co-evolve contributions. In a Harvard Business Review article “Predators and Prey: A New Ecology of Competition”, Moore proposed that organizations are part of a business ecosystem rather than members of a single industry. Or in simple terms, to be able to satisfy customer needs, organizations must be part of business ecosystem, in which these businesses will co-evolve cooperatively instead in silos.

(Courtesy: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_F._Moore)

According to Brett Jones, Nielsen Connect Partner Network, “The evolution of the word continues today. Ecosystems now include communities that use shared, scalable resources to pursue challenging objectives and common interests. Ecosystems are about dynamic interactions between people, software, data, systems and services. But what makes them unique in the world of technology is the streamlined flow to connect, share, grow and transform together. Or in simple terms, in today’s digitally connected world, ecosystems are a key ingredient to grow existing markets and competing effectively.”

(Courtesy: https://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/article/2019/technology-ecosystems-explained/)

Now that we understand the term “ecosystem” a little better, lets deep dive into Microsoft’s Ecosystem in part 2 of this blog series.