The Road to Microsoft's AppSource

We are approaching the end of this calendar year. Looking back, I can already conclude that it was an exciting, energizing and challenging year for the Foodware 365 team rebuilding the solution from scratch. Resetting their minds, no more typical ERP restrictions, thanks to having access to the whole Microsoft Dynamics 365 platform. This platform enables us to create the most valuable solution for the food industry. There is still one hurdle to take and to explore, the road to AppSource. AppSource is Microsoft’s app store where users can try & buy their purpose driven extensions for Dynamics 365 Business Central and other Microsoft business applications.

Written by Benny Dor, Schouw Informatisering

If you have been following our blogs the past year you already know creating Foodware 365 is not solely focused on creating lines of codes. Creating Foodware 365 has many domains where processes were needed to be designed, evaluated and secured. If we take a look at AppSource, technology and marketing are two main focus areas.

When it comes to the technology part an app is more than just a set of tables, pages and functions. It is complemented with automated test scripts, version control, upgrade code, languages and much more. To ensure a trouble-free experience from an end-user perspective every app is validated by Microsoft. First of all, the app is ran through a set of comprehensive automated tests. Prior to making it available on AppSource the apps will also be tested manually and feedback will be supplied to us.

Besides the technology also marketing makes up a big part of the AppSource validation. This extends from clear app descriptions to work instructions and app brochures. For Microsoft the goal of these validations is to ensure a consistent end user experience while browsing through AppSource finding the right solution. When he or she has found the correct app, Microsoft needs to make sure it is installed and runs on Business Central. The end user should not find any issues within their environment, for them it should be business as usual. Just one difference: a Foodware 365 solution is available in their environment.

For us, the ISVs, it does not end after the app is in AppSource, but we’re driving upwards into the next intersection. As Business Central will continuously be updated for Microsoft, so should our apps. That means that we already have designed and put these processes in place. Updating our apps does not only mean compatibility with every new Business Central version. More importantly, we will continuously adjust and add features and functions in our apps, making sure that we help our end users not only with today’s challenges, but with tomorrow’s challenges as well.