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U.S. Air Forces in Europe Opt for Microsoft CRM

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Posted November 15, 2010 By Stuart J. Johnston     Feedback

Microsoft announces successful deployment for federal customer of its Dynamics CRM Task Management Tracker.

Microsoft and partner consultancy Avanade have announced deployment of Microsoft's Dynamics CRM Task Management Tracker (TMT) — an "off-the-shelf" solution — for the U.S. Air Forces in Europe (USAFE).

"TMT provides a simple interface for responding to task and process management challenges, such as personnel evaluations, logistics processes, requests for information, and awards and decorations within the military and federal government communities," a Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) statement said Monday.

The deployment is designed to support task tracking for U.S. and multinational forces, and that can vary widely, from status requests on building projects to questions regarding whether or not an airlift to perform humanitarian support is feasible.

"What was once completed by using signal flags on the battlefield and messengers on horseback now demands the most up-to-date software allowing worldwide synchronized 'same page' collaboration where six generals can agree on an action within 24 hours," U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM) spokesperson Kevin Levija said in the statement.

The initial deployment of TMT was to 1,800 USAFE users which, Microsoft said, enabled them to store task data in a centralized "security enhanced" location. It also lets users make and track massive projects and the tasks that need to be accomplished to achieve them.

In fact, Microsoft claims that the deployment resulted in a decrease of 60 percent in contractor support.

Dynamics CRM TMT hooks into both SharePoint Server as well as Outlook, and helps take stress off of the network by storing email attachments in the document repository. That sliced data storage requirements by 90 percent, and increased task visibility by 24 times, the company said.

The current release of Dynamics CRM is version 4. Microsoft is currently beta testing Dynamics CRM 2011, which is scheduled to be out by year end.

Currently, Microsoft claims some 60,000 users for Dynamics CRM, which includes 23 government organizations. Just last week, Microsoft boasted that it had lured a CRM customer away from rival Salesforce.com (NYSE: CRM).

Stuart J. Johnston is a contributing writer at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @stuartj1000.

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