New Microsoft Dynamics 365 licensing guide refines Team member usage in PowerApps era

October 9 2018

Dynamics 365 Plan Overview | Source: Dynamics 365 Licensing Guide

Microsoft has released an updated licensing guide for Dynamics 365 enterprise solutions – Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement and for Finance and Operations.

Among the notable updates in the new guide were changes to the low-priced Team Member license and more emphasis on focusing more light users on PowerApps Plan 2, the CDS-driven custom app building framework.  Both the Marketing and Talent apps also get adjustments to their pricing to better reflect usage.


"The Dynamics 365 for Marketing pricing model has been adjusted to better reflect the way marketers use the product and consume its resources. For most organizations, this will mean a significant reduction in licensing fees," the Dynamics 365 team announced via blog post, confirming earlier a September report of the same decision.

Since Marketing is not priced per user, other Customer Engagement app users already have access to it. Or they would, had firms chosen to use it under the previous and comically high costs.

Now, with Marketing realigned to define pricing based on consumption in terms of real marketing contact engagement, the company expects more existing Dynamics 365 customers to give it another look. In some cases, the company says, customers will be entitled to free licenses (though still with limitations) based on how many other Customer Engagement seats they have. Also of note, the product will be adding support for 33 new languages and support in all regions where the rest of the Dynamics 365 cloud suite now runs.

Team Member changes

A few partners have already provided their early findings on the licensing changes around Customer Engagement, with particular attention on the fact that Team Member licenses will no longer allow for creating or modifying Account entities within Customer Engagement apps.

Preact noted that although the privileges for contacts remain the same, accounts will no longer be included in Team Member licenses with the new updates. Users will need to have full licenses for D365 Project Service, Field Service, Customer Service or Sales to create, edit and delete accounts.

PowerApps P2, the SKU needed to create what would have been known as XRM apps in the past, is treated as another licensing category that is open to non-Dynamics users (with the exception of some restricted entities).

The Preact team also predicted new experiences for those accessing D365CE as team members:

Once these Team Members applications are available, users with a Team license only will no longer be able to access the full Dynamics 365 apps. Read-only access across all data remains a core part of Team Members license access but write access will be limited to specified or 'white-listed' entities/scenarios tied to each individual application.

As a result, get ready for a Team Members app for Dynamics 365 for Sales and Team Members app for Dynamics 365 for Customer Service...

Brian Illand, writing on his Dynamics 365 Northern Ireland blog, focused on how the different aspects of the update affect customers.

The original team member license has been grandfathered from today, 1st October 2018. Depending on your renewal cycle you might be able to buy and use it for a limited period only.

Illand also noted a change in access to the Portal feature, which now requires 10 full user licenses – up  from five. Microsoft also added two new licenses: Sales Professional and Customer Service Professional. "I am thinking of these like Team Member Plus – they still have the 15 editable entity limit, but can do straightforward things like create cases and leads," he wrote.

According to Illand, the licensing updates came about due to an issue with "honor" based licensing, in which some users after the update to D365 could access functionality they had never been licensed for.

Illand recommended that companies facing these licensing updates should identify how many Team Member licenses are being used now and for what tasks, as well as understand when their present license agreement is slated for renewal. This understanding comes with other important considerations like how users are currently using the company's solution and what functionality they are accessing.

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