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Dynamics 365 becomes the single source of truth for Virtual College

Dynamics 365

Virtual College creates digital training solutions ranging from ready-to-go courses to large-scale training transformation programmes underpinned by learning technology and real-world training expertise.

We talked to Helen Alexander, Dynamics Product Owner, about Virtual College’s progress with Microsoft Dynamics 365 and how ANS has supported their business.

The Challenge:

Helen explains: “When we first transitioned to Dynamics 365 in 2017, it was adopted as a back-end system that only handled workflows for our offline sales team. This created a gap in intelligence because much of our business is online, but we didn’t have visibility of this activity in Dynamics.

This also caused some inconsistency in customer experiences as our processes weren’t aligned across these channels.”

"I get the sense that ANS genuinely cares about their customers. They have supported us through a very ambitious development of Dynamics, from which we’ve seen real success and greater adoption.”

Helen Alexander

Dynamics Product Owner

Virtual College

The Solution:

Helen continues: “With ANS’ help, we’ve completed an integration project which has resulted in Dynamics becoming our single source of truth for product information management.

We can even choose to notify the relevant people when changes are made. Online order data is also fed into Dynamics, giving us visibility, product reporting and analysis alongside offline sales entries.

Further integration with our Sage 50 accounts system pushes invoice details into Dynamics, which has saved time by removing manual steps. This has automated our invoice delivery for both online and offline channels.

Our core objective has been to streamline these processes and unify data, irrespective of channel. It is early days, but we have quickly seen the benefits as we no longer have to update data in two places across our 450 off-the-shelf courses.

Not only is this saving time as less effort is required, but it has also removed inconsistency and improved trust in our data with a single source of truth.

We’ve been on a journey to take Dynamics from being a somewhat underused and unappreciated system to the stage we’re at now – where our teams are much more knowledgeable about what Dynamics can do, and we’re using it to connect the dots between functions and join up collaborative processes.

Across Virtual College, we regard Dynamics 365, Power Apps and the Power Platform as highly versatile technology that is becoming strongly embedded across the business.”

The Outcome:

“Over the past 18 months, we’ve extended its usage and capabilities to establish it as a key part of our architecture, also used by our e-commerce, marketing and content teams.

Within Virtual College today, Dynamics 365 is seen as an adaptable product that gives us insight into our course management, product management, marketing automation, customer support and sales, which are all connected to the system. We have embarked on an ambitious integrated learning platform strategy, and Dynamics 365 is pivotal.

There is still a lot more to come, but we’ve immediately saved time on our product reporting as everything is now coming through Dynamics 365.

Our managed service has given us consistent touchpoints with members of the ANS team who understand our system and the direction we want to take. We’ve built a strong relationship with their team and benefited from their advice on what is possible, the best approach to take, and how to get more from the

I get the sense that ANS genuinely cares about their customers. Our relationship has strengthened during the last 18 months, which is a credit to our account manager and technical account manager. They have supported us through a very ambitious development of Dynamics, from which we’ve seen real success and greater adoption.”