Users’ Guide to Dynamics 365 PowerApps
Microsoft PowerApps, (previously termed) Project Siena, was introduced in 2015. It is a SaaS (Software as a Service) solution cloud-hosted by Microsoft on Azure. Most Dynamics 365 and Office 365 license plans include PowerApps licenses. This allows users to extend the functionality of Dynamics 365 by using PowerApps.
With PowerApps, users can create web-based or mobile apps. This platform can be leveraged to enhance and extend Dynamics 365 by linking with processes and data inside the latter, and adding extra features, similar to a bolt-on or add-on tool.
Users can also utilize PowerApps to build applications that run outside Dynamics 365. However for this purpose, added per-user licenses need to be bought.
Dynamics 365 PowerApps allows noncoders and lay people to develop their own programs without requiring knowledge of programming, software design, database technology, or operating systems. Users simply need to point and click, and leverage pre-designed templates to quickly build their apps. Thus, any lay user – regardless of software knowledge or experience – can produce useful business apps with just a few mouse clicks.
Suitability of PowerApps
An efficient user of Dynamics 365 can build the right apps for their needs if they aren’t too ambitious and know their limitations. This will free them up from depending on the IT unit. A person who wishes to learn advanced and new software features should definitely try PowerApps.
PowerApps is more than a tool restricted to simple scenarios and prebuilt templates. The platform allows users to develop applications from scratch, beginning with a pre-built blank template. Advanced users like IT professionals, programmers, and functional ERP and CRM consultants can rapidly build robust new apps, without needing even low-grade coding.
To work with PowerApps, users need to choose one from the following two types:
• Canvas apps: Begin with the user experience
• Model-based apps: Begin with data connections
Canvas applications are the actual PowerApps: Simply drop controls on a canvas and prepare something that can be intuitively worked with by users even with no training.
On the other hand, model-based apps are a fresh addition. Their advantage is they utilize the CDS (Common Data Service) for applications. The CDS is a suite of data entities which includes forms to see the entities, business logic related to the entities, and relations between the entities.
In Business Central, examples of entities are an address, a contact, a business department, and an account. The built app’s screens are based on entity forms which means if a user adds a fresh field to a form, all the applications they develop from it will be automatically populated with the fresh field. There is no need to change or modify previous apps. This type of advanced code inheritance occurs automatically and makes it easy for users to maintain their custom apps.
Today, top consulting firms and major corporations use PowerApps. For instance, a global consulting company named Avanade, with thousands of staff members, has used PowerApps to create smartphone apps that are used daily by employees including field-bound sales reps. The company uses these apps to link together connected data that is kept and managed in different solutions like marketing content in SharePoint and appointments in MS Outlook calendars.
To sum up, companies can take help from a reliable CRM consulting firm to train their employees on how to effectively implement and use Dynamics 365 PowerApps.