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Microsoft Offers 'Premier' Support for Dynamics

In a roundabout acknowledgment that its Dynamics branded products are not just targeted toward mid-sized businesses, Microsoft announced Thursday it is now offering support for those applications via its Premier enterprise contracts.

To this point, Microsoft's support for the Dynamics product line has been provided via separate contracts through Microsoft implementation partners, and that support continues to be available.

However, now enterprise customers with Premier support contracts who also have Dynamics packages in place will be able unify their support under a single account. That includes a technical account manager who provides a single point of contact, as well as a single process for engagement, according to a Microsoft statement.

"Our customers have been asking for a better, more seamless experience from what had been separate services," Jana Reinke, director of Microsoft Business Services customer services and products management, told InternetNews.com.

One of the implications is that enterprise customers who are trying to sort out a problem that may cross boundaries between their infrastructure – such as Windows Server or SQL Server – and a business application -- such as the Dynamics CRM customer relationship management software, now can get support in a single place.

"Particularly where CRM is integrating with other enterprise products, [you're asking] is this a CRM problem or a SQL Server problem," Andy Beadle, group manager of Worldwide Enterprise Support Services, told InternetNews.com.

Microsoft's Dynamics line includes multiple applications packages in the areas of financial, customer relationship and supply chain management designed primarily for use by small and mid-sized businesses.

"This clearly is a good idea and it makes the case for the reality on the ground [which is that] the Dynamics products have been making headway in the enterprise for some time," Dwight Davis, vice president at researcher Ovum Summit, told InternetNews.com.

"With the blending of what had been separate offerings, Microsoft has said 'Now you do have options under your existing Premier contracts'," Davis added. On the downside, however, the move may rankle some.

"There might be points of friction with partners, and there might be some points of conflict with [enterprise partners like] SAP and Oracle," Davis said

Microsoft Premier Support with Microsoft Dynamics Services is available immediately to enterprise segment customers with Microsoft Dynamics enterprise resource planning (ERP) and Microsoft Dynamics CRM solutions, according to Microsoft statements.