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Directions North America 2017 broadens focus to Microsoft Dynamics 365, SMB channel prep

by Linda Rosencrance
Contributing Writer, MSDW

Directions North America logo 

From Sept. 17-20 Microsoft Dynamics SMB solution partners will be heading to the JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes in Orlando, Florida to participate in Directions North America.

Until 2016, the Directions conference, a Microsoft Dynamics event organized by partners for partners, was focused on NAV. But last year Microsoft asked the organizing committee to transform the event into more of an SMB event. That meant Microsoft would be providing a lot more content around the Dynamics 365 Business Edition, says Katherine Turner-Lawrence, president of the event and VP of sales and marketing at Western Computer.

"That meant opening up our conference to not only SL partners, but GP partners, CRM partners, really any partners that cater to the SMB space," she says. "We had to rename our event. Our event was always NAV Directions, now it's Directions North America."

Changing the face of the event served to make the event more appealing to the broader audience, Turner-Lawrence says, and it made sense to stay aligned with Microsoft's broader strategy.

Despite the evolution, the event board's goal remains the same: to run a partner event that is organized by partners for partners.

"For us, it meant broadening our reach and looking beyond our NAV product," Turner-Lawrence says. "It's not only education for GP, SL and CRM partners, it is also an education for the NAV partners. Many of us enjoyed many years of success with the NAV product, now the Dynamics 365 Business Edition is moving into that space. And potentially we may have a ...

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About Linda Rosencrance

Linda Rosencrance is a freelance writer/editor in the Boston area. Rosencrance has over 25 years experience as an reporter/investigative reporter, writing for many newspapers in the metropolitan Boston area. Rosencrance has been writing about information technology for the past 16 years.

She has covered a variety of IT subjects, including Microsoft Dynamics, mobile security issues such as data loss prevention, network management, secure mobile app development, privacy, cloud computing, BI, big data, analytics, HR, CRM, ERP, and enterprise IT.

Rosencrance is the author of six true crime books for Kensington Publishing Corp.