Microsoft recently announced that it will add a new project management module to Dynamics 365, to be called Microsoft Dynamics 365 Project Operations. This new app will combine capabilities of three existing solutions and replace Dynamics 365 Project Service Automation (PSA) to become Microsoft’s sole end-to-end project service automation software.
For current PSA users this raises a lot of questions. Below we answer the most frequently asked.
Why has Microsoft developed Dynamics 365 Project Operations?
There are a few reasons:
- Users found themselves confused as to which of Microsoft’s project management apps – Project, PSA, Dynamics 365 Finance – was right for them.
- There was some duplicate functionality between these apps.
- PSA users missed the mature project planning functionality of Microsoft Project.
- Many organizations are currently using a combination of PSA, Dynamics 365 Finance, and Project to serve their project business. Some have been working on how to integrate these products with each other to bring their capabilities together.
- Project-based businesses are usually looking for an end-to-end solution that covers the entire project cycle and serves the needs of its project services.
For all these reasons, Microsoft decided to develop a new application that would include every area of the project cycle, from front-end sales functionality to back-end project accounting and financials.
How will Project Operations differ from Dynamics 365 Project Service Automation?
Both PSA and Project Operations are end-to-end project automation tools. While PSA is more focused on the front office project management business, the new app will offer functionality for more personas involved in projects, including accounting and finance teams. Putting it informally, it’s PSA with the project planning capabilities of Project for the web.
Dynamics 365 Project Operations will bring together the best capabilities of Microsoft’s existing project management software, namely:
- Project Sales
- Project Planning
- Resource Utilization
- Team Collaboration
- Time and Expenses
- Project Accounting
- Business Intelligence
The following personas will be able to work with the new module:
- Account Manager
- Project Manager
- Partner Manager
- Resource Manager
- Team Member
- Project Accountant
- COO/Practice Director
What will happen to Dynamics 365 Project Service Automation?
Microsoft will stop selling PSA on 1 October, 2020, once Project Operations becomes available. Until this date, licenses can be added to existing organizations. Users can continue to renew existing PSA licenses until October 1, 2021.
Support and updates for PSA version will cease in October 2024. All roadmap investments and enhancements for PSA will be done through Project Operations.
How can PSA users transition to the new app?
PSA users will not be faced with immediate disruption. Instead, they will have between two (CSP contracts) and four years (Enterprise Agreement contracts) to transition to Project Operations.
Microsoft and partners like proMX will work with PSA users to make sure they can make the switch at their own pace. Once they are ready to move, they will be offered migration tools.
When will Dynamics 365 Project Operations become available?
Project Operations will become generally available on October 1, 2020.
Where can I learn more about the new app?
You can find more information on our Project Operations product page. For an exclusive preview, join us for our online event on 3 June, 2020 where chief developers Gurkan Salk and Rupa Mantravadi will showcase the app and answer your questions.
The public preview for Dynamics 365 Project Operations will start in June 2020.
What will the licensing for Dynamics 365 Project Operations look like?
The current PSA license will be sunset upon the release of Project Operations.
Detailed pricing and licensing information will become available in September. However, it has already been announced that current PSA customers will be locked into the licensing agreement they have today.
What will happen to Microsoft Project?
Microsoft Project will continue to be available as a standalone app.
Since the release of Project Operations is still half a year away, more information will become available over time. We will keep you up-to-date. Make sure to follow us on LinkedIn to not miss the latest developments.