During a work meeting with one of our merchants who is revolutionizing the eCommerce space, the CEO described his ideal shopping experience. Strapping on his VR Oculus headset, going into a virtual clothing store, viewing the products, trying them on; and making a payment all in virtual reality.
Metaverse technology is an example of how much our realities and environment has evolved, we are living in a digital reality. Within every industry things change, take lightbulbs or phones for example. The basic capabilities and core functions remain, but business processes change to offer different experiences, benefits and cost savings. To be part of this evolution, companies need to find a way to deploy this into commerce. We are starting to see this in the move away from legacy financial systems and the adoption of cloud-based financial systems.
Digital technology acceleration has transformed the way businesses communicate and collaborate; and it is leading to the development of better content, resource management, analytics and ultimately profit. While organizations are rapidly embracing it, there is still a slow uptick. Enterprises still lack systems that provide necessary data to allow them to adapt digital technology at a pace needed to be competitive.
So, what does virtual reality and digital technology have in common, and how does it affect commerce? Both strategies are bringing together people and teams across the globe, integrating functions and transforming digital banking and embedded payment options.
In this article we look at:
Technology’s role in digital transformation
How Microsoft Dynamics 365 is helping enterprises
How financial management software is at the core
The gaps in integrated systems
How Cartis Payments and CenPOS solve the gap with embedded payments
All roads to digital transformation begin with the right technology
If artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) has taught us anything, it is that while we can’t anticipate where digital pathways and trends will take us in the not-too-distant future, there are already businesses applying the hyperautomation approach through the use of technological systems that allow organizations to rapidly identify, integrate, automate and anticipate processes for growth.
Customer relationship management (CRM) systems and enterprise resource planning (ERP) software are examples of this technology. They are not a one-and-done implementation, but tools for ongoing business growth by interacting at every stage of business processes, staff, vendors, and consumers. These systems are paramount to digital transformation. By consolidating key daily operations: inventory handling, selling goods and services, data analysis, financial analysis; and integrating the technology as part of a business strategy, executive teams are empowered to make strategic decisions.
The 365 approach toward application transformation
In the same way that businesses need to focus on digital acceleration, technology itself needs to take part in application transformation. This is the process of modernizing dated applications from legacy systems to modern technology. Traditional ERPs that didn’t go through digital transformation are no longer a viable option for many business models, and custom ERPs can be expensive to implement, scale and maintain.
We look to disruptive technologies keeping up with application transformation through a customer centric, integration framework. A system that combines CRM, ERP and AI tools that work for businesses every day; Microsoft Dynamics 365 (D365), is on the right direction.
Microsoft, who hasn’t heard of them or used a Microsoft product? With its long history, it has been a trusted technology for both personal uses, and for day-to-day business tasks (i.e., Microsoft Teams: for meetings, collaboration, conferences, or Microsoft Office: a suite of applications for productivity, data, presentations and communication). But it has also aligned itself with global brands and enterprise businesses like Lids, Columbia Sportswear, and Toyota; and organizations, universities, financial institutions, municipalities, health providers, manufacturers, etc.…with its Dynamics 365 product suite.
Dynamics 365 Modular Experience
A different kind of transformation approach we are seeing today is modular design. Everything from modular furniture, modular homes, modular workspaces to modular software design we see with Microsoft Dynamics 365. D365 employs modules, also known as applications, where the individual components: sales, service, commerce, supply chain and finance get added as a company grows; and these applications build off each other to make up the perfect configuration for the needs of individual businesses. D365’s AppSource lets businesses further tailor these components through their integrations to software as a service (SaaS) applications, and solutions that connect embedded functions.
Microsoft D365 AppSource and the application partners play a vital role in bridging gaps and is indicative of Dynamics 365 success in the integration area. Comparable to how Android holds a leading position with 71% market share in the mobile operating system (OS) market. Die hard Android fans understand the value of seamlessly integrated technologies and applications with the Google platform, and the systems they already use. No special software needed to transfer files, data that easily syncs, and an easily customizable platform which opens opportunities to integrate with more and more applications.
What application is at the core of organizational performance?
With all of D365’s rebranding, iterations, alternate names, and product splits, it can be hard to follow how the applications work together. There are three focal components:
Dynamics AX > Dynamics 365 Finance and Operations (alternatively F&O or FinOps, or Finance and Supply Chain F&SCM) > Dynamics 365 Finance + Dynamics 365 Supply Chain
Dynamics CRM > Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement (CE)
Dynamics NAV > Dynamics 365 Business Central
They are all ultimately the same product with a single implementation, but the licenses businesses choose for their users dictate what applications they add-on. Each application supports a different organizational focus: financials and accounting / manufacturing, distribution, and warehousing or both. For larger enterprises, with complicated needs or global operations; and companies that hold many assets, and SKUs, Dynamics 365 Finance is at the core of supporting all business activities.
A business without a solid financial management system to help their finance teams achieve profit maximation, mitigate risk, project revenue, keep track of transactions and offer insights and data to make quick decisions is like trying to put together a puzzle blindfolded. Enterprises need access to a financial system for budgeting, visibility into performance reporting and forecasting; and automation to eliminate the challenges of time constraints and the manual process of digging for data. Data and built-in key performance indicators (KPI) are relevant at every point of a business’s decision-making process. Without them, companies cannot adapt to consumer demand, monitor market trends or supply chain issues, or achieve business growth. This is why Dynamics 365 Finance is at the core of organizational performance. Moving away from the legacy on-premise Microsoft Dynamics AX, D365 Finance is cloud-based and made up of Dynamics 365 Finance and Dynamics 365 Supply Chain. Dynamics 365 Finance offers the fundamentals of finance management: accounts payable, accounts receivable, budgeting, asset management, cost accounting, and financial reporting.
Bridging the gap with embedded payments
Microsoft Dynamics used to have built-in payments through their Microsoft Payment Services, connecting Dynamics ERP applications to payment service providers (PSPs) to allow users to process debit and credit card payments directly within Microsoft Dynamics. That all changed in 2018 when Microsoft discontinued its credit card processing and payment capabilities in their legacy applications AX, NAV, CRM…and with their move to cloud-based applications, although with stronger integration capabilities it left users seeking alternative payment connectors or have no ability to process payments causing a gap in streamlined operations. The result: many enterprises who have adopted Dynamics 365 Finance solutions may not be using integrated payments for managing customer payments, vendor invoices and collections.
In the efforts to move toward digital transformation initiatives, many enterprises are missing the mark and spending billions on efforts that are going to waste. While the opportunities exist, to add integrated payments, or to incorporate AI and machine learning fraud chargeback management systems; they are not taking full advantage of them, leaving their systems with gaps and flaws. And while businesses can use standalone applications, they will need to utilize at least 2 and likely 3 or more system to process payments and access the data they need. Cartis Payments understands the unique needs of enterprises, and that there needs to be a push for embedded payments and chargeback / fraud prevention.
Cartis Payments and CenPOS offer a way to support finance and operations with embedded payments
Microsoft Dynamics Finance integrates into CenPOS, an Elavon cloud-based payment gateway with a focus on automotive, supply chain, distribution and manufacturing, enabling and embedding credit card processing for Microsoft Dynamics 365. Enterprises using Microsoft Dynamics 365 can authorize and capture credit card payments directly inside D365 Finance for end-to-end payment capabilities.
Cartis Payments’ merchant services together with CenPOS, an omnichannel commerce solution, is like a bridge between an organizations instance of D365 and their consumers’ card issuing banks. Together we open the opportunity for a solid accounts receivable payment solution capable of payment acceptance, contactless payments, digital payment invoices, email and text payments, incremental authorizations, tokenization, online order processing, AVS and CVV verifications, digital receipts, and so much more; and these are automatically reconciled into the Dynamics 365 account balance. CenPOS’s payment solution maintains PCI-DSS compliance keeping businesses out of the PCI scope and their consumer’s credit cards secure.
Cartis Payments offers two payment connection options for Microsoft Dynamics 365: The CenPOS payment gateway for Dynamics 365 Finance and Max Pay Global by Retail Realm which integrates to Elavon’s Converge or Fusebox gateways to provide embedded payments for Dynamics 365 Commerce and Dynamics 365 Finance.
Choosing the right payment connector for setting up credit card payment services in D365 Finance is crucial to streamlining a business’s accounts receivables and automating order processing. Not only do embedded payments reduce manual steps by processing payments directly in D365, eliminating the need for duplicate entry or logging into multiple systems to collect credit card payments; but the right payment connector and merchant service provider can influence credit card processing fees. CenPOS’s level 3 processing and payment optimization sends additional data with every transaction. What this means for business-to-business (B2B) enterprises that mainly run corporate credit cards, is that CenPOS’s gateway will qualify businesses for lower interchange and Cartis Payments can lower their overall processing rates.
As we continue on the digital transformation track, there will be competing technologies trying to lead the way and help enterprises with their operations. Microsoft Dynamics 365 while among the popular ones, is not the only player. Infor CloudSuite and Infor M3 are among the hundreds of other contenders that Cartis Payments can deliver payment capabilities for. Whether you are a business already using a software, or still exploring systems to help your operations, reach out to Cartis Payments to see how we can simplify and integrate payments.