Microsoft Outlook

Microsoft to finally retire Dynamics 365 for Outlook

John PhillipsProduct Updates

Originally planned for deprecation back in 2018, Dynamics 365 for Outlook received a temporary reprieve as some of the functionality it provided had no modern equivalent. However, Microsoft have now confirmed that it will now be deprecated on October 1st, 2020.

What is Dynamics 365 for Outlook?

Not to be confused with the newer Dynamics 365 App for Outlook, Dynamics 365 for Outlook (also known as the Outlook COM Add-in or Outlook Client) is software that is manually installed that provides a link between Outlook and Dynamics 365. It provided the ability to synchronise records between the two platforms, offline data access and the ability to refresh dynamic Excel spreadsheets.

Why is it being deprecated and why the initial reprieve?

Microsoft have moved their attention away from an installed client to a lightweight app that can be automatically pushed out to users. This lowers the IT overhead for companies and also means that the Dynamics 365 functionality is based on the user, not the computer, so if the user is set up on a different computer or accesses Outlook via a web browser or mobile, the link to Dynamics 365 stays with them. As this app also uses the newer Unified Interface, it provides a better overall user experience and makes it much easier to track emails against specific records.

However, there are features that the new App is missing for the moment, such as offline access and the ability to refresh dynamic data held in Excel spreadsheets; so Microsoft delayed the original deprecation, first announced in 2018.

What happens on October 1st?

Microsoft will officially no longer be supporting Dynamics 365 for Outlook, so no technical support or new software updates will be provided. Therefore, they are recommending that anyone still using the program should migrate to the Dynamics 365 App for Outlook prior to October 1st to avoid potential future issues. Microsoft have provided a comprehensive PDF Playbook to aid businesses with the transition.

What if I need the functionality that the App does not provide?

There are a number of workarounds available:

  • Offline access for Dynamics 365 data is currently available in the Android and iOS Dynamics 365 apps and will be coming shortly for the Windows 10 app.
  • Dynamic spreadsheets can be updated by following our tutorial. Microsoft provide more information on this topic here.
  • Using Power Query to pull data from Dynamics 365 into Excel. Microsoft provide a tutorial on this process here.


As the Dynamics 365 App for Outlook has been making great strides in functionality, there are fewer and fewer reasons to still be using the old Dynamics 365 Outlook add-in. We would encourage companies to make the migration sooner rather than later. For Strategy 365 clients with active support agreements, we can assist with the customisation and deployment of the App – simply contact us to discuss your options.

Related Links

  • Microsoft announcement on the future of the Dynamics 365 and Outlook integration
  • Microsoft PDF Playbook to aid with the transition away from Dynamics 365 for Outlook