Abed Asi - Senior Applied Researcher
Enhancements to Relationship analytics capabilities in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales Insights are now available as part of the 2020 release wave 1. The AI-powered enhancements enable salespeople to build strong relationships with customers, take actions based on insights, and ultimately close deals faster.
Relationship analytics (RA) leverages the integration between Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Office 365 to provide users with key performance indicators (KPIs) which capture interaction patterns in business relationships. These KPIs include interactions type, response time, email engagement, and more. The new enhancements enable new sellers to benchmark their open deals against similar won deals, unlocking hidden knowledge on successful plays and relevant experts in their organization.
Capturing deal similarity with AI
A sales deal in a customer relationship management system can potentially have hundreds of attributes with non-linear interactions between them. A straightforward comparison between deals is a challenging task due to the complexity induced by their attributes such as missing values, non-consistent types, duplicates, etc. While the CRM system defines a set of out-of-the-box attributes, it is common that customers introduce additional attributes in the system which makes the comparison task even more challenging.
We address this challenge in a two-stage solution. First, we pre-process the data and detect attributes that we can rely on to train a similarity model between deals. This stage considers both out-of-the-box and custom attributes and intelligently detects the most reliable ones for similarity calculation. Next, our modeling process utilizes deals’ historical information to learn a similarity measure between every pair of deals in the organization. Using machine learning, the model also learns which attributes faithfully explain the similarity measure between deals and ranks them based on their contribution to the similarity score.
Given any open deal in the organization, Relationship analytics relies on the similarity model to retrieve the most similar won deals surfacing all the supported KPIs in one table.
Moreover, using the similarity model, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales proactively informs users about interesting patterns in their open deals, ensuring they are knowledgeable about potential winning practices in their organization. The Relationship analytics insights are updated approximately once a day to reflect the latest customer interactions and opportunity data.