Microsoft Corp today announced the general availability of Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0, the highly anticipated new release of Microsoft’s customer relationship management solution for small businesses, midsize companies and large enterprises. Microsoft CRM provides a complete suite of powerful marketing, sales and service capabilities, all with a familiar and consistent user experience based on Microsoft(R) Office and Microsoft Office Outlook .

Extensive new configuration, customisation and integration capabilities make it easy for customers and partners to deploy highly tailored solutions that drive measurable business results and offer a low total cost of ownership.

The product is offered in a Professional Edition and a Small Business Edition, and is immediately available in English worldwide. Dutch, French, German and Russian versions of Microsoft CRM will be available 1 Jan 2006, and 17 more language versions will be released in the coming months.

“Businesses demand a CRM solution that is easy to use, adaptable and affordable,” said Jeff Raikes, president of the Microsoft Business Division. “Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 delivers a major breakthrough in the CRM marketplace. With its native Microsoft Office and Outlook experience and a flexible platform that gives customers a true choice of deployment options, we are bringing the power of CRM to information workers, enabling them to better understand their customers, be more productive and have a positive impact on their business’ bottom line.”

Addressing the Key Needs in the CRM Market Today
Microsoft CRM is built to address the three key challenges that determine the success or failure of most CRM initiatives: user adoption, business fit and total cost of ownership.
Works the way you do. Microsoft CRM drives high user adoption by delivering roles-based CRM capabilities within a native Microsoft Office and Outlook experience. Users can choose to use a rich Outlook client or access the system through a browser-based client or a mobile device.
Works the way your business does. Microsoft CRM easily adapts to each company’s unique needs. Powerful event-driven workflow capabilities drive consistent process execution across the organisation, and powerful reporting and analytics capabilities based on Microsoft Excel(R) and SQL Server(TM) Reporting Services offer real-time visibility into every business process and customer interaction.

Works the way technology should. Microsoft CRM delivers a low total cost of ownership by offering a highly flexible and configurable platform built on web services and other standard tools and technologies.

“How many times have you presented a user with new software only to hear them say, ‘Why can’t I have software that works the way I do?'” said Bruce Richardson, chief research officer at AMR Research Inc. “Microsoft Office is the way we work, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 tightly marries Office and customer relationship management functionality. It’s virtually impossible to separate one from the other.”

Focus Expands to Address Large Enterprise Customers
In addition to serving the needs of small and midsize businesses, Microsoft CRM’s breakthrough usability, flexibility and cost benefits are generating significant interest from enterprise customers as well as global systems integrators such as Accenture.

“Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 provides a new alternative for enterprises running Microsoft Office applications,” said Woody Driggs, managing director of the CRM Service Line at Accenture. “For those organisations, this new offering can provide them with the familiarity, ease of use and integration options they’ve been seeking from their CRM solution, and we look forward to serving their needs jointly with Avanade, one of the leading enterprise partners for Microsoft CRM.”

New Small Business Edition Delivering Power and Simplicity
The new release of Microsoft CRM offers a new version designed for small businesses. The new Small Business Edition is designed to run on Microsoft Windows(R) Small Business Server (SBS) and offers a full CRM suite that can be installed with just 10 clicks. It provides wizard-driven configuration of the application, integrates tightly with SBS features such as fax management and integrated server management, and offers an easy migration path from Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 with Business Contact Manager.

Giving Customers a Choice of Deployment Models
As of 1 Jan 2006, Microsoft will offer subscription-based licensing to partners that deliver hosted solutions based on Microsoft CRM. This continues Microsoft’s strong commitment to providing a choice of flexible and affordable CRM functionality in both on-premise and hosted deployment models. Since the same code is used in both models, customers can choose whichever deployment model fits their business and technical requirements at any point in time.

New Release in Production With Early Adopter Customers Worldwide
Microsoft CRM has already been deployed by and is delivering results for a select group of small businesses, midsize companies and large enterprises around the world. These early adopter customers include companies such as Absolute Software Corp, CommtechWireless, Corrilian Corp, Essex Medical & Forensic Services Ltd, Greater Twin Cities United Way, Grosvenor Property Management, H&R Block, Perot Systems Corp, Phillips Enabling Technologies Group, Tourism Whistler and Volvo Baumaschinen Osterreich GmbH. Additional information about these customers and details on some of the benefits they are experiencing through the use of Microsoft CRM today can be found in the press release titled “Customers Demonstrate the Power of Microsoft Dynamics(TM) CRM 3.0” in the Press Release section of .