Robert Houdeshell is the author of Microsoft Dynamics 365 Project Operations, we got the chance to sit down with him and find out more about his experience of writing with Packt.
Q: What is/are your specialist tech area(s)?
Robert: Microsoft Dynamics 365 (Sales, Project Operations)
Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?
Robert: I was approached by Packt Publishing in the Fall of 2020 to write about Project Operations. Immediately, I thought this was a great idea since I have been seeing such confusion in the industry about what Project Operations are. I found it a great way to “level set” what Project Operations is and what it can do for business.
Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?
Robert: The research has included significant deep-dives into the Microsoft library of documentation, product reviews, product knowledge, and usage across industries. To say “how long” might include over 24 years… as it has been a life of learning that has culminated into this book.
Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?
Robert: Yes, I faced challenges and even a three-week timeframe where I was unable to write. However, I found the strength to get back into the writing chair and focus on just the next chapter, then the next, etc. Packt worked with me to create a great outline and construct of the book so it was relatively easy to just “get back into it”.
Q: What’s your take on the technologies discussed in the book? Where do you see these technologies heading in the future?
Robert: The Microsoft 365 Framework, Dynamics 365, and Project Operations will continue to grow. Project Operations itself has significant growth potential. There is a lot of growth potential in the industry as well. Professional Services/Project Operations functionality will also grow within the business world as more emphasis is placed on operational excellence and improvements in the margin.
Q: Why should readers choose this book over others already on the market? How would you differentiate your book from its competition?
Robert: The straightforward nature of this book makes it easy to read and understand versus a highly technical book focused on development efforts.
Q. What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away from the book with?
Robert: The book will provide you with the key elements of configuring Project Operation and connect Project Operations through the Microsoft 365 and Dynamics 365 ecosystem. The book will outline how to effectively manage and profit from the projects you are engaged in as well as how to improve the operational business flows.
Q. What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?
Robert: Always be critical thinkers… understand the technology but also dive deeper into the full functionality of what the solution is and how it adds value to your clients.
Q. Can you share any blogs, websites and forums to help readers gain a holistic view of the tech they are learning?
Q. How would you describe your author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?
Robert: Be yourself and write in a professional way that fits how you explain the topics to your team members, clients, and industry experts. Avoid trying to sound like any other author out there, including myself :-). Just be yourself and give more than you think you can and stretch beyond where you feel comfortable.
Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?
Robert: Take the lead of your editors! They are your friend and they make your work come alive!
You can find Robert’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Project Operations– Available on Amazon.com