Microsoft Viva Sales is a new application that works with Dynamics 365 and Salesforce to save sellers’ time and improve productivity.
This enables automating CRM data capture from Outlook and Teams to reduce manual data entry. Viva Sales currently connects with Dynamics 365 and Salesforce but might be integrated with other CRM systems in the future.
Viva Sales is free for Dynamics 365 Sales Enterprise and Premium customers. So what do we know so far? Let’s take a look.
What does Viva Sales mean for Dynamics users?
According to CSO Insights, on average, sellers spend more time on administrative tasks than selling.
Despite the integrations between Dynamics, Outlook and Teams, sellers lose productivity by switching between these applications. When interactions happen over different systems, there is also a risk of failing to capture this information in CRM.
But sellers say repetitive manual data entry in CRM takes too much valuable time.
According to a study by Microsoft and Futurum Research, 56% of salespeople said that manually entering data interferes with customer time. 80% say that their lives would be much easier if CRM automatically captured data during calls.
This is where Viva Sales helps by connecting Outlook, Teams and Dynamics to minimise manual data entry.
How does Viva Sales work with Dynamics 365, Outlook & Teams to improve seller productivity?
1) Simplifies manual data lookup and CRM data entry.
Viva Sales reduces the time spent looking for information by accessing customer details and related account and opportunity data from Dynamics 365 within Outlook and Teams.
Once installed, the Viva icon appears in Outlook, allowing you to sign in to Dynamics 365.
When you open an email conversation, Viva Sales looks for the corresponding contact record in your CRM database. If it already exists, Viva Sales automatically pull in the relevant contact information in a side pane that opens up next to your email. This can be edited, if needed, directly from Outlook without logging into Dynamics 365.
If the contact is new, sellers can create a new record in Dynamics 365 from Outlook with a few clicks. The information already available, such as first and last names, will be auto-populated, reducing the need to enter data into CRM manually.
Even though this functionality already exists within the D365 App for Outlook, adding contacts in Viva Sales is quicker.
Like the Dynamics 365 App for Outlook, you can also access the Viva Sales pane from appointments and when writing an email.
2) Helps sellers manage relationships effectively.
Once contacts are linked to CRM records, these can be marked as customers or non-customers from Outlook with just a click. This enables sellers to prioritise the relationships that matter by keeping track of all meaningful conversations.
If you have multiple recipients, Viva Sales highlights which contacts have been marked as customers. It also displays previous email exchanges and Teams meetings with customers and allows you to add notes which are set in Outlook.
In the D365 App for Outlook, emails can be tracked using the ‘set regarding’ or ‘track’ button. In comparison, the ‘Mark as Customer’ option, appears to be much quicker by allowing sellers to track all customer emails with a single click.
3) AI-driven recommendations for sales teams.
The integration with Teams offers many new and exciting features that take advantage of conversation intelligence. Suppose you join a Teams meeting with a ‘Marked Customer’ and start the recording.
Intelligence embedded in Viva Sales automatically transcripts the conversation and provides a summary at the end of the call.
This is another way to help sellers stay focused, as they don’t have to take notes during the meeting and risk missing something important.
You’ll be able to get a recap of the conversation. This can include highlights and follow-up actions discussed on the call. Other insights include sentiment analysis and tracking conversation KPIs.
Once the summary is available, you can add it as a note to the related contact record back in Dynamics 365.
Not just that, the new Copilot in Viva Sales offers many AI-powered capabilities that enable sellers to communicate effectively and save time.
Suppose you want to reply to an inquiry, write a proposal or offer a discount to a prospect. Typically this involves spending a lot of time writing messages by pulling in the relevant account details from Dynamics 365.
By choosing the type of response you want to send, Viva Sales will automatically generate an email with personalised text. You can then review this and make any modifications to reflect their tone before sending it.
These recommendations make life easier by eliminating mundane activities, allowing sellers to save time and improve their communications.
4) Enables collaboration with everyone.
You may be familiar with the feature that allows Dynamics records to be shared on Teams. This is also extended to Viva Sales, making it easier to collaborate with anyone in the organisation.
You can copy the customer record link from Viva Sales in Outlook and paste them into a Teams chat as an adaptive card.
Other options include adding a link in an email message, or mentioning the CRM contact with the prefix ‘@’. All of this allows chat participants to gain customer context without having to switch to CRM.
5) Less app switching, less time wasted.
Often, sales teams jump between CRM, Outlook and Teams multiple times a day to access, update and share data. Viva Sales brings these applications closer by quickly capturing and surfacing information when needed.
Viva Sales integrates everything sellers need into a single workflow, helping you focus on building relationships and closing deals.
As manual data entry in CRM is cited as a common productivity blocker, Viva Sales can help you save time and focus more on customer conversations.
With Microsoft’s investment in AI, we expect more innovations to streamline sales processes and offer new insights. What do you think about this new feature? If you have any queries, please get in touch.