As organizations respond to the ongoing, unprecedented situation and grapple with disruptions across their workforce due to the evolving global health crisis, we want to share the steps we’re taking to help ensure our customers’ business continuity with Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform.

HSO and Microsoft’s priority is the seamless delivery of Business Applications services for our customers. This begins with the global response plan for Microsoft’s Azure cloud, designed to help ensure the continuous, reliable operation of our cloud services. Microsoft is building from that, ensuring that Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform incident response teams are available, and equipped with all the tools they need. Consistent with COVID-19 response plans across Microsoft, critical updates will continue to be pushed to Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform services.

During this critical time, we want to reduce pressure on our customers and partners to absorb updates driven by end of support or deprecation deadlines. The details will vary by specific service, for example, we’re simplifying the ability for Dynamics 365 Finance, Supply Chain Management, and Commerce customers to pause updates for an extended period. The product specific FAQs provide details and if you have additional questions, please post them to the Microsoft official forum.

Microsoft and HSO will continue to deliver on our innovation roadmap and leverage our safe deployment models, but will provide allowances for uptake of the 2020 wave 1 release. Our April and, in some cases, May updates are already progressing through our readiness phases according to the published Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform release plans. We expect that those will be available as planned.

However, Microsoft will enable one additional update deferral for Dynamics 365 Finance (previously known as Finance and Operations). This should allow customers to take the 2020 wave 1 updates when it is most convenient—either in the month of April, as originally planned, or deferred to May.

The work we’ve driven over the last two years to empower rapid innovation and protect quality is built on two key factors:

  • First, the signals and feedback from our partner early access programs, release validation programs, previews, and first customer deployments are essential to our delivery for general availability with high quality. As our customers and partners must prioritize running their organizations and protecting people in response to COVID-19, we will be monitoring all channels to ensure that we are still getting the right level of feedback.
  • The second key factor is reducing the number of versions in distribution—a critical component of driving service quality and reliability. We will also be monitoring the pace of our customers’ ability to move off older versions. As we’ve seen with the response to the pandemic across the world, it is important to keep monitoring conditions and adjust plans dynamically. We will continue to drive innovation and achieve the right balance between innovation and safe deployment to our customers.

One of the cultural pillars for the Microsoft Business Applications team is that “we are all in this together.” Please know that “we” extends to the entire Microsoft ecosystem—from our global team devoted to your success to our partner community to everyone in your organization. These are challenging times. Working together, we’ll all emerge stronger.

If you have questions about Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Power Platform services, please check Microsoft’s FAQs, as content is continuously updated with the very latest guidance and information. Again, if you don’t find what you need, please post your questions at Microsoft’s official forum or contact the HSO team, our team will be working to answer questions and address concerns as quickly as possible.

Please be safe and stay healthy.