Sunday, 18 March 2012

Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step 2012 and Sure Step Online

Dynamics Sure Step Methodology

History and Future Directions

The original version of Sure Step was launched in March 2007. Since then, the Microsoft vision for the Sure Step program has been:

  • To deliver an ever-evolving, world-class methodology to partners for Microsoft Dynamics customer engagements.
  • To help partners take advantage of the latest best practices, new tools developed by Microsoft Dynamics product teams, and changes in Microsoft Dynamics software.
  • To help partners achieve high customer satisfaction, increase channel productivity, and improve profits.

What Is Sure Step?

The Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step Methodology is a comprehensive customer engagement methodology describing the processes and disciplines necessary to implement Microsoft Dynamics products.

  • The methodology covers the following products:
  1. Microsoft Dynamics CRM
  2. Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online
  3. Microsoft Dynamics AX
  4. Microsoft Dynamics GP
  5. Microsoft Dynamics NAV
  6. Microsoft Dynamics SL
  • Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step is a full customer lifecycle methodology for all Microsoft Dynamics solutions, providing the Microsoft ecosystem with comprehensive sales through delivery guidance, project management discipline alignment and field-driven best practices. Sure Step is designed to enable the solution provider to better serve customers by helping reduce their Microsoft Dynamics total cost of ownership. Sure Step content covers the Microsoft Dynamics ERP and CRM suite of solutions, including Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics SL, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
  • The guidance, tools, templates and best practices provided in the methodology can help increase the consistency, timeframes, quality and success of Microsoft Dynamics engagements.
  • Because implementations have many similarities across these products, Sure Step has been structured as a general methodology with a product-specific layer for each product. The general content consists primarily of prescriptive phase-by-phase and activity-by-activity descriptions for completing an implementation, and also includes information on the Project Management discipline. The product-specific content is represented by tools and templates as well as hyperlinks to materials that can be found outside of the tool.

 Overall benefits of Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step

  • A consistent methodology, project management tools and advice, and field-tested best practices - all within user-friendly tools - that enable partners to more efficiently deploy, migrate to, configure, and upgrade Microsoft Dynamics solutions.
  • Drives partner productivity by providing a consistent approach and a standard set of tools and templates that help ensure customer projects are completed efficiently, adding immediate business value, which promotes high customer satisfaction.
  • Helps partners to work more easily with other partners - as well as with Microsoft Consultants, when appropriate - on large, multi-site, or multi-region implementations. It also helps partners work more efficiently with independent software vendors (ISVs) who provide third-party solutions or expertise.
  • Assurance that you are using the same approach as others involved in the project to drive toward a successful customer implementation.

The Sure Step Methodology Resources

The Sure Step methodology includes the following resources:
  • Methodology content. A flow of implementation activities that lead from the initial business diagnosis through implementation and handoff to operations.
  • Tools and templates. Sample documents and document structures to help guide the project activity and system configuration.
  • The Sure Step application. A presentation interface for the Sure Step methodology that helps you to navigate and apply the methodology and adapt it to your unique requirements.
  • Community resources. Links to other resources available in the Microsoft Dynamics community.

 Sure Step 2012 and Sure Step Online

  • Sure Step 2012 and Sure Step Online provide options for agile project types, industry, organizational change management, extended CRM development projects and ISV templates. Sure Step projects can be created in both SharePoint 2010 and SharePoint 2007.
  • Partners can get Sure Step content by downloading the application to their personal computer, or access it in its online format via Sure Step Online.
  • Sure Step Online Overview: View the latest guidance and content available online without downloading and installing the client. This is a great way to access and share content quickly from anywhere in multiple languages.

NEW! Sure Step 2012

Sure Step 2012 is now available with updated content and services, primarily focusing on the AX 2012 release. Updated content includes:

  • Accelerated Proof of Concept with CRM Online service – Provides scripts, demos, Delivery Guide, and related content for building a quick proof of concept or demo for a customer using the CRM Online 30-day trial. This supports rapid requirements definition and solution decision-making. Find this in the Decision Accelerator offering.
  • Upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 – tools and templates to support the Upgrade project type, reflecting an Microsoft Dynamics AX 2009 to Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 upgrade scenario.
  • Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 Implementation tools and templates are updated to reflect an Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 implementation scenario, including Fit/Gap analysis worksheet, estimator tool, requirements questionnaire, security configuration requirements template, and other valuable templates.
  • Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Updates – new CRM artifacts including Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 Upgrade Assessment, Database Sizing Tool, and Design Best Practices.
  • Sure Step Optimization Offering – These services have been repackaged across all products to represent either discrete stand-alone services such as Developer Workshop or bundled services available to customers, such as Architecture Review, Project Governance and Delivery Review, and Upgrade Review.

Differences between Sure Step 2012 and Sure Step Online?

  • The content is the same: The online format of Sure Step contains all of the same great content that is found in the downloadable version of Sure Step 2012.
  • Project Location: While personalized projects can be created using either format, you can only save Sure Step Online projects to your own SharePoint site. The downloadable Sure Step 2012 still allows you to create projects to a hard drive that can be read inside a local Sure Step installation as well as to a SharePoint site.
  • Content Updates: With Sure Step Online, Microsoft is able to keep content up to date without a regular release cycle. The Online version of Sure Step will ensure that partners and customers have the most up to date content available.

I hope this blog about 'Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step 2012 and Sure Step Online' was informative. Please feel free to leave your comments.


  1. Intersting and beautiful blog lovely presentation thanks for sharing your software support

  2. Thanks Anil. I am glad you enjoyed reading it.

  3. It is really got a lot of good benefits,I learn a lot on your blog specially the differences of it.Very informative.

  4. Where can I get access to the Sure Step download and any of the eLearning materials? All the links I've found so far lead nowhere (can not be found). Thanks for the post.

    1. The best way to get the materials online is by going into your MBS partner program. Does your company have MBS (Microsoft Business Solutions) partner account with Microsoft? If yes, you can log into that website and download the material. Please remember this account is different than the normal Microsoft partner account.

      The website link is: If your company is not a MBS partner, then please contact Microsoft MBS support. The Microsoft guys are very helpful and they can deliver you the right material. I hope this helps.

  5. There does not seem to be much training for Sure Step now. As a PMP this methodology is aligned with PMI. I'm surprised there are not courses onsite/on-line that would address the methodology taking into consideration what a PMP already knows?


  6. Get Microsoft Dynamics Sure Step certified with the help of the up to date MB5-858 training material.

  7. Yeah its a good article. According to you what we project managers do is communicating. And a lot of this communication is done during project meetings. It can sometimes feel like you are running from one meeting to another and that your time is often wasted. Meetings don’t start on time, the issues aren’t dealt with, there is no agenda, there is no focus, nobody assigns any follow ups or tasks and of course then they also don’t end on time. An efficient project manager is required for the good management of a project. I think a project manager should PMP certified. Looking forwards to apply what I learned in PMP classes in my company.