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New Microsoft tools integrate LinkedIn data directly into Dynamics 365

New Microsoft tools integrate LinkedIn data directly into Dynamics 365
From TechCrunch - April 24, 2017

Microsoft announced some significant integrations between LinkedIn, the professional social network it bought last year for over $26 billion and Microsoft Dynamics 365, the companys CRM and ERP suite.

It was clear that when Microsoft paid that much money for LinkedIn, it had plans to use that data in other Microsoft products. Those ideas began to emerge last summer with some Office 365 integration announcements, but now we are starting to see some direct links (if youll pardon the expression) to try and leverage LinkedIn as a kind of lead generation and recruitment engine for Microsofts enterprise products.

The announcement includes two major pieces. First of all, the company is linking Dynamics 365 and the LinkedIn Sales Navigator tool to give sales people access to its database of 500 million users.

Microsoft is also announcing a tool for HR pros called Dynamics 365 for Talent, which gives Dynamics 365 ERP users, the ability to search for new talent directly from LinkedIns Recruiter and Learning solutions, and manage employees from recruitment throughout their time with company.

Microsofts Scott Guthrie, executive vice president for the Cloud and Enterprise Group at Microsoft points out in a blog post announcing the new integrations that there are already connections between Dynamics 365 and Office 365 products. The next logical step it would seem would be to build similar connections to LinkedIn, especially for sales. Sales Navigator with Dynamics 365 will dramatically increase the effectiveness of salespeople by tapping into their professional networks and relationships, giving them the ability to improve their pipeline, Guthrie wrote.

Ray Wang, founder and principal analyst at Constellation Research says this opens the door to social selling where you can track connections between people at your company and the target company. He offers an example to illustrate the concept:

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