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15.12.2020

Is the Power Platform your saviour?

As an ISV partner, you may be in the fortunate position of having a bespoke solution, that you’ve built out using either Microsoft’s Modern Workplace tools or leveraging the capabilities of Microsoft Azure. Discovering ways of innovating and identifying cross-sell opportunities amongst this can be a real challenge, though. If you find yourself in this boat, then perhaps you should consider how the Power Platform could potentially be your saviour, by letting you offer a range of tailorable solutions that you can easily “bolt-on” as part of your existing offering. In this blog post, we’ll talk through how you can get started with the Power Platform and augment your customer’s experiences in the process. 

Interactive Reporting Dashboards 

Often, it can be a challenge to provide a good range of reporting tools relating to your solution, in a way that clients will instantly engage with. This is where Power BI comes into its element. Thanks, in part, to its wide range of data connectors, you can quickly bring data in from your backend application systems – regardless of the database vendor, storage location or proprietary application you are leveraging. Next, you can then bring together a wide range of different, interactive visualisations, which can easily map to both simple and complex data types. Whether it’s just a simple pie-chart, a map or an advanced visual type authored using R or Python, it’s effortless to build something stunning, fast. Finally, once your reporting solution is ready, you can then release this onto the Microsoft AppSource store, to provide a streamlined mechanism for your customers to install it. All in all, you may surprise yourself with just how easy it is to build a highly engaging reporting tool, that you can then bolt on as an included or paid-for extra in your solution. 

Custom Connectors 

If your solution has an existing REST API, then Custom Connectors provide a straightforward mechanism to increasing the reach of your application to new audiences. Simply import your API’s definition, via a Postman collection or OpenAPI definition, define one of several standard authentication methods for your app and, in a pinch, your API is immediately usable alongside Power Automate, Power Apps and Azure Logic Apps. Custom connectors can then be shared to your customers or certified into Microsoft, allowing anyone across the globe to work with your API and the various capabilities exposed out within it. 

Rapid, Low-Code Application 

Depending on what your solution is doing, there may be a requirement to deploy out a corresponding application, that your customers can use to access your solution from any device. Rather than invest and maintain a bespoke application, you can look to leverage Power Apps instead. Whether you need to provide a mobile/tablet version of your application or provide an interactive portal for customers to log support tickets, access support articles or interact directly with the core components of your solution, Power Apps can meet these requirements, and more. Also, ISV partners can realise additional Cloud Solutions Provider (CSP) revenue, by including any Power Apps licensing costs alongside the costs of their solution. 

Virtual Agents 

You may have seen or worked with an AI-powered virtual agent and be thinking “Hey! Wouldn’t it be great if we could easily deploy one of our own within our website or solution?”. Whereas previously, it would be necessary to enter a long development cycle to build these out, Microsoft now provides Power Virtual Agents as a “quick and easy” mechanism to build out a fully functioning virtual agent, using a straightforward user interface. You can then extend these agents out further, by connecting them with any external system or embedding them within Microsoft Teams. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to build out a fully functioning chatbot in no time at all, using Power Virtual Agents. 

This post provides just a snapshot of how you can use the Power Platform to enrich your existing ISV solution, all of which can be implemented rapidly and using minimal code.

If you are considering expanding into the Power Platform, then Agility on Demand can help by providing authoritative, technical resources into your business quickly.

And, whether you need them for a few days or months, you can leverage the benefits of our bench offering to get the type of talent you need on your terms. Contact Hannah today on hannah@agilityondemand.com or 0203 488 7055 for more information.

Make sure you look our for the next blog in Joe's series: 'Whats new with the Dynamics 365 & Power Platform Wave 1 2021 Release' - coming soon!

Posted by: Agility On Demand