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The Common Data Model, Common Data Service & Microsoft Dynamics 365

At the core of every technology implementation is a question about to use data to support more informed decision making. This naturally leads to the issue of data management and questions like how different tools can communicate with each other to unlock trends that exist outside of single systems. To answer these questions, integration is (almost) always the answer.

However, up until recently, integrations between Microsoft systems were custom built, making them expensive, risky and difficult to maintain. Enter: The Common Data Model. The Common Data Model (or CDM) simplifies integration between two Microsoft systems by providing template integrations. For example, this means easier integration of the financial side of Dynamics 365 and Operations. The templates help guide system admins through integration without coding, which means integration is now accessible to a larger community of users. According to Microsoft, the benefit of the Common Data Model is that “applications can work against data without needing to explicitly know where that data is coming from.”

But what is the Common Data Model?

The Common Data Model is a secure database stored in Microsoft Azure. It has a number of standard business entities, but also supports businesses building their own.

What is the Common Data Service?

CDS is the Common Data Service offered by Microsoft that utilizes the Common Data Model to easily generate cross-platform reporting capabilities. The core of the Common Data Service (CDS) & Common Data Model (CDM) is to simplify challenges posed by data management. In addition, the Common Data Service, provides several key capabilities over the common data model, such as building with power apps and automating business processes with Flow.

What does this mean for the future of data management?

From Microsoft, this is their first step towards providing true intelligence by way of a holistic view of all an organization’s business data. In the world of the Common Data Model, a contact is a contact is a contact, no matter the system it comes from. Microsoft is promising a future wherein all the reams of data that organizations are currently collecting finally begin generating business returns.

From a Mavim perspective, we are enthusiastic with Microsoft’s new vision for the future. On top of the CDM, Mavim offers organizations additional support with the creation of a dynamic, virtual representation of an organization in its operational context – what Gartner calls a Digital Twin of an organization. The data visualized in Mavim provides the context of the organization’s current state, which can be continuously infused with real-time data to give feedback about how the organization is responding to changes, deploying resources, and delivering customer value. This insight aids decision making and helps accelerate the transformation into an adaptive enterprise that is prepared to continuously adjust to emergent, dynamic market conditions.

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