A new beginning

I’ve been postponing the writing of this post long enough, but I think I owe the readers of my blog an explanation as to why there is so little updates on Dynamics CRM coming from me. So here is my long and overdue update.

It is no secret that I have been disappointed with Dynamics CRM for a while. I feel that Microsoft has not done enough to address some fundamental limitations of the software which limits our ability to customise it for our customers, and they keep adding features to the platform outside of the xRM framework, which makes this even worse.

I know I am not alone on this criticism. I have been in touch with a lot of Dynamics CRM consultants out there who agree with this critique. However, most of these consultants are happy to work with Dynamics CRM even if they acknowledge that the product is far from perfect. However, I was not.

As far as I can recall, the vast majority of CRM projects I worked on had to include kludges that I, as an architect, was not happy with. Don’t get me wrong. Customers were generally happy with the results and projects met (most) requirements. But I knew that behind the scenes we had to come up with some shabby kludge in order to overcome limitations of the product. And while new releases of the product did seem like adding new features to the users, I felt that from an architecture perspective the product was getting worse. Some of these limitations I speak of have been flagged as far as Dynamics CRM 3.0, and even though they have hundreds (and sometimes even thousands) of votes in Microsoft Connect, little to nothing has been done to address these issues.

Such disillusion made me re-think my career choice. I want to work with technologies that impose fewer limitations on my creativity and design process. I want to work with a product that allows me to give my best to customers, without falling short because a given component cannot be customised beyond a predefined scope. With that in mind, I started to look for a career change. Back in 2012 I enrolled into a second masters degree, this time an MSc in Business Intelligence Systems and Data Mining. The programme took a significant toll on my free time, which is why there has been so few updates on my blog. Plus as I started to deep dive into the systems, data analytics, and the business and architectural concepts of business intelligence, I started to drift away from Dynamics CRM faster than I hoped for.

I then got a new job position as an enterprise applications architect, and I eventually got promoted to become the BI Principal of the company I work for. As of November 2015, I have graduated from the MSc programme, which for me simbolises a milestone for my new career choice.

So what does this means for this blog? Here are a few pointers in a frequently asked questions format:

  • Do you plan to keep writing about Dynamics CRM?
    No, I no longer plan to be writing about Dynamics CRM. I recommend readers of this blog to follow the blog of my good friend Jukka Niiranen instead. In particular for those of you looking for updates on the sales pipeline series, Jukka has gallantly taken on this task. He did a great job for CRM 2015 and I am sure he will keep the pace with the upcoming versions as long as he is working on Dynamics CRM. I also recommend the blog from Adam Vero.
  • What about the existing posts you have written about Dynamics CRM?
    All previous blog posts about Dynamics CRM have been closed for commenting. I will keep them on the site for now as historical archive, but I am not sure what I will do with them in the future. One thing is certain: I will not remove them from the blog without making them somehow available to the public for research purposes.
  • What about the country solution for Dynamics CRM?
    The CRM country solution has been transferred to Jukka Niiranen. I will still maintain the country/region dataset that I made available on Scribd, because it is not specific to Dynamics CRM and I am still using it and maintaining it for Business Intelligence systems.
  • So, what are your plans for the blog? Do you plan to write about Business Intelligence?
    I do have plans to write about business intelligence, but I want to build-up on my knowledge first so I can write posts on subjects that have not been explored yet, or on subjects where I can bring my own original research. There is no point in me simply rehashing what others have done. I also plan to write articles about general architecture. The blog will go through a major redesign in the future.

So there you have it: I no longer work with Dynamics CRM in the capacity of a solutions consultant, and I have no plans to revisit that role in the future. I am still involved in some aspects of Dynamics CRM as an architect (i.e. at a higher level). But as far as being a Dynamics CRM subject matter expert and writing about it — I am throwing away the towel. Thank you all for stopping by. It’s been emotional.

Leave a comment