Steve has a third chat with Charles Lamanna


I try and sneak up on Charles Lamanna a third time, but he was ready for it, “fool me once”. Recently promoted to CVP, Citizen Application Platform I wanted to check in with Charles, who was working from home, about some of the things that are going on.  We covered a lot of topics, including the post-virus workplace, RPA, API Limits, Multiplexing and Restricted Entities. Enjoy!

BTW, don’t forget, Mark Smith (@nz365guy) and I do PowerUpLive every Tuesday at 5PM EST, click here to be alerted, and here’s a link to the replays!

Full transcript follows:

Charles Lamanna:
Hello, it’s Charles Lamanna.

Steve Mordue:
Charles, Steve Mordue. How’s it going?

Charles Lamanna:
Hey Steve. I guess this is being recorded, huh?

Steve Mordue:
You bet. This is our third time. Have you got some time?

Charles Lamanna:
I do, always. I have a lot of time locked in my house right now.

Steve Mordue:
Yeah. It’s going to be interesting for people who are listening to this in the future, we are recording this on March 27th 2020. The country is on lockdown and we’re still heading upwards, so we don’t know where this thing will go or end or what things will look like, but that’s where we are now and the whole campus has been basically shut down except for essential people. You’re all working from home.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, for a little over three weeks now actually. We did the MVP Summit from home, we did the partner advisory council from home. We even did a virtual offsite where for four days, we all joined a Teams meeting for eight hours each day.

Steve Mordue:
Oh my God. How are you finding it, compared to going in the office and being with the team. It was massive loss of productivity of your stuff or is it still okay?

Charles Lamanna:
I’d say there definitely is a slight loss of productivity. It’s not as bad as I thought it would be, but I mean, never thought I’d miss my office so much. I really miss just … you get used to it for a few years, you get everything in place.

Steve Mordue:
There’s a bunch of businesses, I look up my apartment window to downtown Tampa at all these office buildings that are full of law firms and all sorts of people, with bunch of cubicle farms within them with people that could actually be doing their job from anywhere and could have for years and now of course are, and I’m wondering how many of these companies that were reluctant to do remote, that felt like I need to keep eyes on you, by the time we get through this, we’ll have figured out how to do it remote. I wonder how many of those remote workers will end up coming back to an office. It could be a huge shift.

Charles Lamanna:
It definitely will. It’s interesting. I was in a talk yesterday and we were talking about how when the original SARS outbreak happened, that actually is what launched eCommerce in APJ, and it’s around then this jd.com and Ali basically like mobile ordering took off during that time because people were locked at home and then the rest is history, right? Those are the second largest eCommerce properties out there in the world second only to Amazon. So definitely, I would imagine the way people work and the technology people use will be fundamentally different on the other side of this.

Steve Mordue:
Well, I’ll tell you what, it’s almost prescient the way you guys decided to invest deeply in Teams over the past year before any of this was out there. And now looking back, that’s looking like really brilliant move.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, there’s a lot of impact. A lot of people are in trouble, but it’s just, it’s so exciting to be able to use something like Teams to do remote learning and tele-health and just video plus chat plus meetings integrated, Teams is really the only one doing that right now and it’s just phenomenal for someone working remote or working virtually like us right now.

Steve Mordue:
You said we did recently go through MVP Summit, which converted into a virtual event at the last minute and it was not horrible for a virtual event first-time scrambled together. But I’m also wondering about events in the future if this may change a lot of events into virtual events even when they don’t need to be anymore. But it feels like the technology needs to get one step better on the idea. It wasn’t really built for virtual events at scale like that. But it seems like you guys are in a spot to really, you know what, we could figure that out and make a virtual event application actually built specifically for that purpose and potentially get rid of a lot of future … because I tell you, there’s no executive out there that’s happy about approving travel expenses for his team to go to some in person event if he could sit at home or sit online, what for?

Charles Lamanna:
And what’s really interesting is, I read Ben Thompson, he has a article called Stratechery and it’s one of my favorite things to read and he talks about like is this the end of large conferences? Because when you move to all digital and you realize you get such bigger reach. I mean, you get 100,000 people, no problem. That’s almost impossible to do in person and for a fraction of the cost and it can be way more tailored and you don’t have to worry about double booking. That’s another example where maybe things start to change fundamentally in the future.

Steve Mordue:
And I think conferences for years have been more about, or at least equally about, the social aspect, seeing people in person going out to the bar after the event, having fun going out to dinner, seeing some town, that sort of thing. And that part of course is probably what causes a lot of people want to go to a conerence and I have guys you and I both know that go to a conference and don’t go to any sessions. Guys like myself and Mark Smith, we don’t go to any sessions. We just go out there. We do that little things like we had you on and stuff like that just for fun and mainly are out there for the drinking. So we’re going to miss it.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah. Well I guess, the one thing too is just having a group of 20 … that’s the only thing I’ve learned for … like Teams is amazing, like four people, you can have a really good conversation or a big broadcast, but if you want to have a group discussion it’s hard. And that’s something that works so well because you get all these people together that would never be in the room at the same time in person at these conferences and you can have some really interesting conversations.

Steve Mordue:
That would be the thing to figure out because in person in like MVP Summit, you guys get up in front of, I don’t know, a hundred of us and we’re all raising our hand, taking our turns, asking questions until we run you guys off the stage in fear. But now in this virtual, there’s no real raise your hand. It’s just the loudest person, the one that doesn’t stop talking gets to continue until his questions gets out of his mouth and that would be an area that it seems like they could do some improvement.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, and I think [crosstalk 00:06:35] is raise your hand in Teams so you can press the button to raise your hand. I can’t wait for that.

Steve Mordue:
That would be awesome. So you could mute everybody and they’d have to raise their hand and … well, there you go. That’s already heading the direction it would need to because that’s what you’d need really for some kind of a virtual conference.

Charles Lamanna:
Yes. That way also I can just never answer you when you raise your hand. No, I’m just kidding.

Steve Mordue:
Yeah, exactly. “Oh, it’s Steve raising his hand again. We’ll just ignore him.”

Charles Lamanna:
Yep.

Steve Mordue:
A lot of stuff that you guys announced at MVP Summit and of course as everybody knows that’s mostly NDA for now so we can’t talk about a lot of that stuff, but there’s a couple of things that we could talk about. One theme I think I heard, which I wouldn’t think is NDA, was this idea of make everything we have work better. And when you guys are building like you’ve been building at the pace you’ve been building. It’s like somebody threw matches in a box of fireworks at stuff that’s coming out. It takes a while for all of those wires to get connected and everything to be singing like you’d want it. And sometimes it’s like, you know what, this is working darn good. Let’s get this other thing launched and then we get a bunch of stuff that’s working darn good but not perfect. So it definitely feels like there’s a motion now to let’s go back over top of all this awesome stuff we’ve launched and let’s connect those last few wires. Let’s get this stuff really working as good as it could work. Is that a fair statement?

Charles Lamanna:
That’s exactly right. And the mantra we keep repeating internally is “end-to-end” because what you’ll see is there’ll be components that work well individually but they’ll just be huge seams or gaps when you try to wire them up together and our whole vision has been that you want to wire these things together. That’s why we talk about one Dynamics 365, one power platform. So we have this big focus on making sure scenarios that span applications or expand parts of the platform actually work well end to end and it’s going in and wiring those things up and spackling over the creases and putting a new coat of paint on it. It’s not fundamental and it’s not necessarily something that will pop in a demo or in a keynote, but it’ll just make a huge difference for our customers. And we see it already, we track our net promoter score very closely, like what are the makers, end users rate the product as they leverage it, and we just see it as we systematically improve these end-to-end experiences. That net promoter score just keeps going up and up and up and up.

Steve Mordue:
I know we’re a one Microsoft now, which is a nice term, but in reality, these are lots of groups that are focused on their things. You’ve got the Office group focusing on their things, Biz Apps focusing on theirs, Azure focusing on theirs and you’ve got within your own group of bag things like VRP and power platform that they’re wiring there you’re working on and at least that’s in your realm. You can make that happen, but then you get Azure AD group go do something out there that messes up something for us, or you talk about a gap, like a gap maybe between something we’re doing over here and something’s has happened over in the Office side and those are kinds of things that you don’t have direct control. You got to try and influence and almost make a case internally to those teams that, hey, this is good or get Sacha to make a case, get somebody to make the case.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, and I think like that is a challenge. As any organization gets bigger you have, like I’d say it’s not perfectly well mixed. Kind of like the ocean, right? The ocean is big enough. It’s not perfectly well mixed, but I think the fact that it’s actually a cultural tenant of Microsoft now to operate in the one Microsoft interest, useful listening and being willing to have the dialogue on is this truly better at the macro level? Is this a global maxima for Microsoft to go do this capability? Even if the things you directly own, it’s maybe not a maxima for you and this opens the door to have that dialogue of hey, we need this feature for say the Outlook at [inaudible 00:10:38] so that our Outlook mail app can be better and we can get people off the comm at it. That’s an example of a really tight partnership between Outlook and us.

Charles Lamanna:
And systematically, the Outlook team is completely willing and has shipped feature after feature to go make that Dynamics and Power Apps mail app richer and richer. And just the most recent example is to finally bring delegation to the mail app and that’s come over the last three and a half months. So that definitely is a challenge, but it’s eminently surmountable and solvable.

Steve Mordue:
I would imagine there’s to some degree of quid pro quo, right? I mean, hey, you guys helped me out with this. I know there’s nothing in it for you, but it’ll help me. And then when I have an opportunity later to help you guys out. So we’re all kind of open arm instead of crossed arms when [inaudible 00:11:27] approaching these other things. So how big is your list of things you owe other people?

Charles Lamanna:
For Power Apps, I owe a lot. But what’s great is a lot of these things aren’t like a zero sum in that in order for it to be good for one product or one team at Microsoft has to be bad for the other. The reality is Power Apps inside of Teams, I’ll use that as an example. As Power Apps, we’re very excited about that because are asking for an integrated experience inside Teams. I want it by my left rail for the app bar or I want it as a tab inside my channel. Those are real customer demands and on the other side, Teams wants to go support as many line of business applications as possible inside Teams. And we all know what’s the fastest way to go create a bunch of line of business apps? It’s not to go write code is to go use a low-code solution like Power Apps. So you actually can go help accelerate the platform and the line of business awareness and teams and you can go up Power Apps, reach new customers at a broader base just by doing that one feature.

Charles Lamanna:
So it is a very much win-win situation and adopting that mentality through one Microsoft that really the Microsoft cloud is what customers want and customers want to go trust and transact with Microsoft and not individual product teams. It is just a cultural shift that has really grown under Satya with great success. So I would say, I don’t know if a product like Power Apps could have been successful 15 years ago, but it definitely, we have the environment where you can’t have something like Power Apps embedded in SharePoint, embedded in Teams, the platform for Dynamics and a standalone business and having that not be dissonance or in conflict.

Steve Mordue:
It’s interesting, I think that the companies that have embraced Teams, and it was frankly a slow go to get people to bite on because it looked a lot different than what they were used to and how they did business. But now the ones that have really gone into it are like, they’re maniacal about Teams and Teams is like their new desktop. They’re operating in Teams all day long now and like I can’t imagine how we ever did anything before Teams. So we’re still at that inflection point with Teams where I think there’s a huge number of customers yet to discover what a lot of customers have about how transformative that can be. So you had to have Power Apps along for that ride. I think that ride is just getting started.

Steve Mordue:
It’s interesting these times right now, there’s an awkwardness about marketing or promoting things that make sense because of a virus. For example, I tactfully tried to write a couple of posts here recently and stood back. I was thinking, does that look opportunistic? But the one was this idea that I’d mentioned earlier, lots of people sending people home to work from home. Well, these companies that have had on-premise systems and still have them been reluctant to move to the cloud, that moved to remote workforce is going to be much more complicated than it would have been for those that had already gone full cloud, people just logging in. They got all the security they need to get. Some of these VPN solutions just were never designed or reinvested enough into to support the entire workforce. What are your thoughts about that? Do you have an opinion on that?

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah. I think the way we view it is number one, things have changed right now. That’s just the reality. People are in different working environments, people are under a different economic pressure. There’s very real frontline response necessary to go and combat COVID-19 out in the field. So things have changed. That’s number one. And the second thing that we’ve adopted is because things have changed, we need to be flexible. And if you look across what we’ve done at Microsoft, even just specifically in the area that I work on, we took the April release or the 2020 wave 1 release. Originally it was going to be mandatory upgrade in April. Talking to a lot of customers, they said, “We can’t get the workforce to test it. Please don’t do this change, we can’t take it.”

Charles Lamanna:
So we extended the opt in window for the wave 1 release to May for an extra month and we’ll keep evaluating stuff like that constantly. But we did that and that’s a big change for us because we really have trumpeted that clockwork. It’s always in April, it’s going to come up. But we just felt like that was the right thing to do. Or we’ve also done a bunch of programs where for six months you can get Power Apps or Dynamics CE free if you’re in healthcare, hospitals, life science or government organization because we want to go help. So there’s literally dozens and dozens and dozens of state local government, hospitals that we’re working with right now inside my team. And we wanted to make sure we could help them in a way where it was clear we were not trying to profiteer off of the crisis.

Steve Mordue:
It is that fine line though, because obviously there’ll be a lot to these folks that’ll take you up on those opportunities. And then when all this stuff passes, at some point you guys are going to reach out and say, “Hey, that thing we were giving you for free for so long, we like it back or have you start paying,” and it is a fine line about, the super cynics could look at it very cynically I guess. The other thing that is interesting to me, I was talking about how in this time of business, revenue is going to be a challenge for businesses right now. Revenue is going to drop for most businesses that are out there. There’ll be certain businesses certainly that will … in every crisis there’s always some businesses that do better than others but most are going to have a little downturn. And their revenue growth is going to be largely out of their control at the moment. And the government could shut down the people that are buying your product or who knows and it’s not something you could control like you could before.

Steve Mordue:
So what you can control though is your costs. That’s really all you can control right now. It’s the cost side and both those drop to the bottom line the same way, right?

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah.

Steve Mordue:
And obviously you laying off people as people are doing that, but it seems like the time for people to really look into their organization for where money is leaking out. Because I look at historically to solve a problem like that, maybe with a business application, we’re looking at Dynamics 365 or Salesforce or some big applications, costs a lot of money, a lot of time to get implemented to plug up a leaky ship that’s losing some money. Where now with Power Apps, we really had the ability to go, let’s identify those leaks. Let’s spin up a Power App in a week or two weeks and solve this problem.

Steve Mordue:
We’re doing one right now for a Fortune 500 company that discovered [inaudible 00:18:20] $50,000 a month. And in a big company, you can not notice that. I would notice it, but they didn’t notice it until someone suddenly noticed it. We’re literally going to plug that hole with a Power App at a total development cost of about 15 grand. And it’s just amazing, amazing when you think about how many of those sorts of things and now’s a good time for people to really focus on where’s money leaking out of your business and there’s some lower costs, low-code, quick tools now that could potentially plug those leaks that we didn’t even have before.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah. And if we look at as a company, we actually view Power Apps and Power Automate together as two products that will be envisioned doing quite well even during an economic downturn for that reason. Because you don’t have to hire a very expensive developer to maybe go solve the solution or even if you go work with a services company to implement it, they can implement it much more quickly than they would if they had to go write code. And we’re working with I said like a Fortune 100, like very large company just I was talking to this week and they said, well before we were talking about Power Apps all about like transformation. How do we go drive revenue forward and now for the next six months we’re going to pivot and we’re going to be focused on driving efficiencies in our business process and retiring other IT solutions which overlap and can be replaced with Power Apps.

Charles Lamanna:
So they’re now going to go hunt for like this licensing thing, they pay one million bucks a year. This one, they paid two million bucks a year. Can they just spend a little bit of effort, move that to Power Apps and be able to shut down those licenses once and for all. So that’s the benefit of the flexibility of the platform and just the ROI is so clean that we think that there’s going to be a lot of opportunity between Power Apps and Power Automate with the new RPA capabilities.

Steve Mordue:
And talking about RPA in a second, but you did make a point there that it’s funny how their original thought was to use it to grow revenue. And because of the situation we’re in now, they’re looking at another use case, which frankly was just as valid before any virus or anything else was out there. It’s interesting that it took something like that to have them say, well what’s the other hugely obviously we could solve.

Charles Lamanna:
Exactly.

Steve Mordue:
So RPA is an interesting one. There was a lot of talk, a lot of excitement about RPA. And I know that you’re probably still somewhat limited on what you can talk about, but whatever you can say, what are you thinking about that?

Charles Lamanna:
The RPA, we’re going to be GA in that with the April wave. So wave 1, just in a week or so. We announced the licensing details for RPA four weeks ago or so I think on March 2nd and what’s exciting between the capabilities of it being a true low-code offering like typical power platform offering plus the reasonable licensing options that we have, which are generally like I’d say, the most affordable you’re going to find out there for an RPA solution, we think we can actually start to democratize enterprise grade automation. Make it possible to really have business users, IT, pro developers, partners, service companies all use the same platform to go automate and drive efficiencies. So that’s the exciting bit, because Power Automate and Flow have been around, Microsoft Flow before that had been around for a while but have really been, I’d say capped to a degree around personal and team and light departmental automation.

Charles Lamanna:
But now with the RPA functionality, we’re starting to see enterprise wide invoice processing, quarterly earnings preparation, accounts, basically resolving receivable accounts, things like that. Very heavy workloads built on top of Power Automate, the same low-code tool has been there for a few years. So we’re very excited about it for that reason. And in a world where you want to go trim costs, there’s real opportunity to go drive efficiency using Power Automate over time.

Steve Mordue:
Yep. Definitely. It wouldn’t be a talk with me if I didn’t bust your balls about some stuff.

Charles Lamanna:
Let me hear it. What is it about?

Steve Mordue:
In one of our last calls we talked about the hot topic at the time was about these API limits and you said, this isn’t something we want customers to think about. We actually thought of it more as like an asterisk on your cable bill. It shouldn’t be a factor. Yet it continues to persist in people’s minds. The conversation has not gone away. We’ve got people claiming that they’re running into limits and doing stuff like that. And what are your thoughts around that now that it’s actually out there and we’re seeing how it’s landed in people’s organizations.

Charles Lamanna:
I do still hear a little bit of noise from customers or partners that are running into it. But it is dramatically less because it doesn’t impact 99% of customers, it wouldn’t impact that 99% of customers. So since it’s kind of rolled out, we’ve heard a lot less noise but there’s still does exist some noise. And the thing that we could-

Steve Mordue:
Would you call it air? Would you just call it a false noise? Because you guys have the analytics in the background, you know what’s exactly happening. You know if once you launch this that suddenly half of our customer base is hitting this wall and you know that that’s not happening. So is it still the feeling that the ones that are squawking either of that small percentage or just fear mongers?

Charles Lamanna:
I think there are … I’d say I’d break down three very valid concerns that we hear. The first is, we don’t have enough reporting to make it clear and easy to understand where you stand for the API limits. We have early stage reporting and power platform admin center, but we don’t have enough. So there’s a lot of improvements coming for that by wave two of this year. So by the end of the next wave, release wave for Dynamics, you’ll be able to go in and understand exactly how your API limits are being used and if there’s any risk. And that’s just going to be exposing telemetry that we ourselves look at today and we think that will help with a lot of the concern that people are facing. So that’s one.

Charles Lamanna:
The second is we have people that are using a lot of the Dynamics products. They’re using customer insights, they’re using Power Apps, they’re using customer engagement, you’re using marketing. And their concern is all these application workflows. Like imagine customer insights taking data from CE or marketing doing segmentation on CE are actually generating a lot of API calls. So as they actually keep adding more and more apps, which we like of course, and we think that’s the whole special value prop of Dynamics, they are generating a huge amount of API calls. And so this is something we’re going back and looking at to see how do we count the application API calls from Microsoft delivered apps and also what API inclusions should come with those other licenses. So that is something we’re looking at and we don’t have enforcement today so people aren’t really feeling the pinch, but people are looking at it and saying, “Hey, I can see that I’m making a lot of API calls because of these other apps.” That’s the second one.

Charles Lamanna:
And third thing is we have customers who have a web app or some other service which calls into CPS in the background and that generates a lot of load and that is causing friction. Those are probably the people that we intended to have impact from these changes. And because those are people where maybe they have 10 user licenses but they generate like a billion API calls a day. So that’s probably not correct. But we are seeing noise in a few places there. And that last one I think is probably, we’re not going to do anything to simplify, whereas the first two are things we’re going to go try to simplify and improve over time.

Steve Mordue:
Couple of other things before I let you go. One is, multiplexing is a concept that’s been around for a very, very long time. Back when we had CALS, back when it was a physical app installed on machines and stuff like that. Now we’re in this different world with all these cloud apps and services bumping into each other. But multiplexing is still this big gray box for lots of folks. And even in the Microsoft documentation, it’s kind of contradictory in some places. What’s the story with, we’ve got Salesforce Connectors, we got SAP Connectors, we’ve got all these other kinds of connectors that almost seem to be in direct conflict with some of this multiplexing. How do you guys get to figure that out? What does multiplexing going to look like in the future?

Charles Lamanna:
I would say the spirit of the law when it comes to multiplexing is, if you’re doing something to reduce the number of user licenses you’d have to get for users, then you’re probably doing multiplexing. And the problem is to convert that to a letter of the law is we create confusion historically to a degree as well as accidentally prevent things that we don’t want to prevent based on how the language is written. And I’ll give an example. So if I use a connector to say Salesforce or SAP, I still have to be licensed through Power Apps to Salesforce or SAP because you’re running with your identity to Salesforce and SAP. So we feel like that’s totally aligned with the spirit and those partners feel good with it.

Charles Lamanna:
One of the places where there was some weirdness was like say I have a Power App connecting to my Dynamics CE data, but I’m not using any of the Dynamics CE logic. Is that multiplexing? Technically four months ago that was multiplexing as the way the licensee guide was written. But that was not the intent and that was not the spirit of the law. So we’ve gone and changed that actually to say if you’re licensed for Power Apps, you’re writing a Power App to connect to Dynamics data, but not using the Dynamics app logic or app experience, then that’s totally fine and not multiplexing. And that was changed I think in late January, early February because some people pointed out, like this doesn’t make sense. And then we said, “You know you’re right. That’s not where we want to have the impact of that being.” So we went and changed it.

Charles Lamanna:
But at its core, if you’re using or doing something to circumvent a user license and you’ll know you’re doing it because it will feel unnatural because the system’s not built to behave that way, that’s multiplexing and not allowed. Everything else, the intent is to have it be allowed.

Steve Mordue:
So if your goal is to game the system, you’re multiplexing.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, and you’ll know it. If you’re like, okay, I’m going to create one system account and people will use a web portal I build in Azure and the system account will then have to fake authorization talking to CDN, you’re like in bad territory when you’re doing that.

Steve Mordue:
Yeah. A lot of that comes from customers. Customers are like, “Can’t we take a Power App and then have a custom entity that by workflow goes and recreates a record in a restricted entity.” I’m like, “No, what are you talking about?” Anything you’re doing to try and go around the fence, it’s probably going to fall into that funny territory. But-

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah. And a challenge we always have is, how do we convert these ideas into a digestible licensing guide? And I think it’s almost like running a law, like legislating, but there are no judges to actually go interpret the law.

Steve Mordue:
And we also know that when it’s written down in a licensing guide, it almost might as well not be said. If we can’t get it technically enforced at various levels, we can point back to the licensing guide. We as partners should be telling customers, “Yep, not allowed to do that.” But without technical enforcement, these licensing guides are just something you could beat them over the head with when they misbehave. And speaking of restricted entities, when we last talked, you had mentioned, yep, there may be some more coming. That was a very long time ago and we haven’t seen them. Is the thinking still along the lines of that is how we’re going to protect some of the first party IP or we maybe have some different thoughts of different ways to protect it in this new world of a common data service, open source, data model, et cetera.

Charles Lamanna:
We actually do … we are working on something, I can’t quite tip my hand yet, that will better allow you to share data and share schema from the common data model, the common data service in the apps without running into the concept of the restricted entities. So there is something in the works that we’re working towards and I would say at a high level, restricted entities as a concept are largely antithetical to our common data service, common data model and vision. And they were just like the least bad option to go make sure that we appropriately can license Dynamics apps. So we are working feverously on many proposals to get out of that restricted entity business, but still have a model which more appropriately captures and protects the value of the Dynamics apps without introducing restricted entities. So there, I’d say stay tuned. There definitely the best minds are working on it and I’ve seen a very digestible and good proposal that is running up the chain right now and that’ll get us in a much better place later this year.

Steve Mordue:
I had that assumption since you talked about adding some and so much time had gone by and my thinking was, because I never liked the idea of the restricted entities for reasons you just said. It felt like a quick down and dirty temporary solution and I had the assumption that since we hadn’t heard any more that you guys were actually coming up with a better idea. So very glad to hear that. I’m sure everybody would be glad to hear that. So I know you got to get back to work. You’re a busy guy. Anything else you want to convey to folks out there right now?

Charles Lamanna:
The biggest go do I’d have for folks right now at this point in time, it would be go play with Power Automate, learn the new RPA functionality. It’s a huge addition to dynamic CE. It’s a great thing for support and customer service workloads. It’s a great thing for finance workloads. Like we have one customer that went from 22 finance ops people down to three just using Power Automate and RPA. Plus if you use Power Apps, it’s a great way to go extend it. So I say go give Power Automate and RPA a try. That is the number one thing I think to pay attention to and that’s the number one thing we’re going to be talking about at the virtual launch event. That would be my call to action. That’d be the one thing I’d say. And the second thing would be, I even wore short thinking Steve would maybe video call me today, but it’s too bad you can’t see it.

Steve Mordue:
That’s very nice.

Charles Lamanna:
But maybe I take a picture and send it to you about a merry pigmas. So that’s the current state here is I work from home, but I say-

Steve Mordue:
We’re all letting the hair grow and-

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, I had a call with our PR and AR folks, our analyst relations folks because I had an interview on Wednesday and they said, “You’re going to shave, right? You’re going to shave before you get on the camera with him.” So yeah. But anyway, exciting times. As always, pleasure.

Steve Mordue:
Listen, you never have to shave to talk to me.

Charles Lamanna:
Awesome. Thank you. I appreciate that.

Steve Mordue:
All right Charles, thanks for the time.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, always good to chat with you, Steve. Have a good weekend. Stay safe.

Steve Mordue MVP

Steve Mordue, a Microsoft Business Applications MVP, is the CEO of Forceworks, a 2014 Microsoft Partner of the Year. Steve started his business applications consulting career in 2001, originally supporting Salesforce.com as a Certified Consultant. Steve transitioned his consulting practice to Dynamics CRM, (now Dynamics 365) in 2011. Steve has been engaged in hundreds of deployments over the course of his career. As one of the leading Microsoft Business Application Consultants, recognized by Microsoft as an expert, Steve has provided training, on behalf of Microsoft, to other Microsoft Partners globally on how to launch and build successful practices. Steve is a member of the Worldwide Dynamics Partner Advisory Council, and is a frequent presenter and panelist at global Microsoft events. The opinions shared in this blog are Steve's alone. If you are looking for Microsoft confidential information, you will not find any here.

1 Response

  1. Mikkel Pedersen Kaas says:

    I’ve always enjoyed these directs chat with Charles. I hope we’ll see more in the future.
    I thought it was interesting to hear his response to the API limits. Our numbers definitly doesn’t reflect what they’re saying and I’m still having a hard time truly seeing how this additional cost matches the vision of a shared business application platform for all (or most) of your data. We’re seeing customers making poor architectural decisions due to cost. The same goes for the storage cost and login cost for Power Apps Portals.

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