What is Microsoft Dataverse anyway — and why should I care? That’s a question we get a lot. While Microsoft offers a great technical definition of Dataverse, it struggles to explain the value that Dataverse brings to organizations that are looking to solve problems with technology.
Technically, Dataverse is a database in the cloud. What sets it apart from SQL Server running in Azure is that Dataverse brings additional capabilities that a plain SQL database will not have. For example, Dataverse includes the following features:
- Complex role-based security
- Pre-defined metadata to reflect common types of data you might store
- Native tie-ins to Microsoft Power Platform and Microsoft Dynamics 365
- Ability to build business rules for your data via a point-and-click user interface
- Rollup and calculated fields
- Built-in auditing
Developing all of these features from scratch would be incredibly time-consuming, but Dataverse has them ready to go.
How did Dataverse come to be this way? Historically, these features were born out of the Microsoft Dynamics CRM product. It forms the foundation upon which Dataverse was built.
Extending beyond that has created a truly cloud-first data platform. Microsoft has then enhanced it with their Common Data Model (as well as a number of industry-specific accelerator models). The result is a pre-built data structure to hold common elements of business data. This includes things like customers and contacts, leads and opportunities, service cases/tickets and SLAs, plus many more.
The benefit of this pre-determined schema is the time you save when building or deploying business applications. You no longer need to map out in great detail the table structure or the common fields you expect to store. You don’t need to create everything with relationships and security. Instead, this all comes out of the box. You simply select the components that are relevant to you and start moving in data.
Once you have data in Dataverse, you are truly able to realize the power the platform provides. That data becomes native to your Dynamics 365 modules. It is readily available to build Power Apps against. It is natively ingested within Power BI for analytics and reporting. It is designed to become the central hub for your organization’s data — from marketing to sales to service to financials. Plus, it empowers you to extend into lines of business which may be unique to your organization or industry.
Dataverse can help empower your organization to solve problems faster. To learn more, call Boyer or sign up for our upcoming webinar on Wednesday, Feb. 17.