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The Customer Immersion Experience

Engage customers and convey the value of Microsoft’s Modern Workplace solutions for their business needs

“The CIE program has helped me increase my closure rate by 60% and drive more bottom line business. This amazing program also gives me the opportunity to bring the latest and greatest technology directly to my prospects and customers. They truly view me as the expert and it helps me differentiate my company by bringing the hands-on technology to them.”

Michael Goldstein, CEO, LAN InfoTech

CIE Comp

What is the Customer Immersion Experience?

The Customer Immersion Experience (CIE) is a powerful sales tool where customers explore and discover hands-on with an interactive, virtual “sandbox” environment populated with data, files, personas, and Microsoft solutions at their own pace. Facilitators foster discussion that benefits the organization and their goals, which changes the conversation from a product-specific discussion to a platform discussion. By letting customers experience and explore what is possible at their own pace, a CIE helps customers see how Office 365 and Windows 10 are directly relevant to their daily work and can deliver value for their business.

Watch the video Become a facilitator

Business benefits of the Customer Immersion Experience

The Customer Immersion Experience has been one of the top sales and marketing tools in the US for over five years and consistently receives rave reviews from customers.* A study shows that bringing customers through a CIE can have the following impact:

30 days faster
20 percent increase
95 percent revenue
*Based on internal data for CIE facilitators. Past performance is not indicative of future performance.

“I’ve always said sales is like art, it’s our job to listen to our customers and help them paint the perfect picture of what they need for business. The CIE is the only program we’ve seen that allows the customer to envision what’s possible using different Microsoft platforms while we provide guidance along the way.”

Sean Ferrel, Founder and Chairman, Managed Solution

Discover the power of the Customer Immersion Experience

Take a first look at the solutions explored in Customer Immersion Experiences and learn some productivity tips to empower your modern workplace.

Hear from partners and customers about the Customer Immersion Experience

See what partners have to say about how CIE helps them grow relationships, find and develop opportunities, and improve adoption.

Reed W New Signature

Pitching the Customer Immersion Experience

New Signature shows customers the value of committing the time to do a CIE

Patrick K Integration Partners

Seeing work in a new way

Integration Partners helps customer envision a new way to work

Jack L Getting to Green

A sale every time

For Getting To Green, every CIE has led to a sale

Rick M Occucare

Solutions for a healthcare customer

The Customer Immersion Experience helps Occucare International find solutions to clinic issues

Tim B Plus Consulting

Moving from legacy systems leads to productivity

Plus Consulting demonstrates to a customer how their capabilities can grow dramatically with cloud solutions

CIE Comp

The business value of the Customer Immersion Experience

What partners and customers are saying about the value of CIE

Customer Immersion Experience facilitator training

The Customer Immersion Experience training is open to select partners. Contact your partner marketing advisor or partner development manager to learn how to get trained as a facilitator.

Frequently asked questions

The Customer Immersion Experience training is open to select partners. Contact your partner marketing advisor or partner development manager to learn how to get trained as a facilitator.

Revenue Opportunities The Customer Immersion Experience helps increase renewal rates, uncover new opportunities and grow Office 365, Dynamics 365, EMS, and Windows revenue and services.
Support A dedicated team of experts are here to help with any software, hardware, and program support needs.
Hardware Get access to Microsoft’s state of the art hardware to use for your CIE at no cost.
Microsoft Facilities The CIE Service Desk will help you book rooms in Microsoft Technology Centers (MTCs) and Microsoft offices for your CIE sessions.
Shipping Microsoft will ship mobile CIE equipment wherever you need it and handle all logistics at no cost to you.
Training Keep your skills sharp with live and on-demand training. Access CIE Facilitator Guides, online training materials, best practices, and other supplemental content in the CIE Portal.
Facilitator Community Join the CIE facilitator community to share ideas, best practices, and get advice from your fellow CIE facilitators.
Marketing Drive awareness and demand with downloadable CIE marketing assets. Increase internal Microsoft visibility and discoverability as a US Customer Immersion Experience Qualified Partner.
Contests & Sweepstakes Gain recognition and visibility for your organization with the Microsoft field and leadership teams and a chance to earn prizes!
Revenue Opportunities
The Customer Immersion Experience helps increase renewal rates, uncover new opportunities and grow Office 365, Dynamics 365, EMS, and Windows revenue and services.
Support
A dedicated team of experts are here to help with any software, hardware, and program support needs.
Hardware
Get access to Microsoft’s state of the art hardware to use for your CIE at no cost.
Microsoft Facilities
The CIE Service Desk will help you book rooms in Microsoft Technology Centers (MTCs) and Microsoft offices for your CIE sessions.
Shipping
Microsoft will ship mobile CIE equipment wherever you need it and handle all logistics at no cost to you.
Training
Keep your skills sharp with live and on-demand training. Access CIE Facilitator Guides, online training materials, best practices, and other supplemental content in the CIE Portal.
Facilitator Community
Join the CIE facilitator community to share ideas, best practices, and get advice from your fellow CIE facilitators.
Marketing
Drive awareness and demand with downloadable CIE marketing assets. Increase internal Microsoft visibility and discoverability as a US Customer Immersion Experience Qualified Partner.
Contests & Sweepstakes
Gain recognition and visibility for your organization with the Microsoft field and leadership teams and a chance to earn prizes!

Facilitators must complete facilitator training to become a qualified facilitator.

After training, facilitators must

  • Deliver the 1st CIE session within 90 days of training;
  • Deliver at least 4 CIE sessions or reach a minimum of 8 unique accounts each fiscal year;
  • Stay current on versions of the CIE storyline and content; and
  • Report all conducted sessions by the 4th of the month following the session.

Presentation Experience. The person you select to attend the CIE facilitator training should have experience presenting, demonstrating, and facilitating technology discussions and engagements with business decision-makers and high-profile executives.

Soft Skills. Beyond just being a proficient presenter, facilitators need to listen, guide, and inspire.

Technology Expertise. Prospective facilitators should understand unified communications (UC), collaboration, and Business Intelligence (BI). Facilitators should also stay up to date on the latest and greatest changes coming from Microsoft, including:

  • 200-level knowledge and experience with all Microsoft Office 365 workloads, including Yammer, OneDrive, Delve, Power BI, Excel Power View and Power Map, Skype for Business on all device types.
  • 200-level experience with Windows 10 and Office 365 scenarios on Windows phone.
  • 200-level knowledge of Office touch apps, and digital inking.
  • 200-level knowledge of Microsoft Intune.
  • 100-level knowledge of Office 365 apps and services working across iOS devices.
  • 100-level knowledge of Dynamics CRM Online and integration with Office 365.

The Immersion experience for Office 365 client image utilizes an evaluation edition of Windows 10, allowing for you to showcase the CIE experience for Office 365 without the need to provide a license key.

Client Software:

  • CIE 9.0 Client ISO
    • Windows 10® Creators Update (64 bit) Enterprise Evaluation - version 1709
    • Microsoft Office® ProPlus 2016 (32 bit) – Monthly – version 1712
    • Microsoft Visio® Professional 2016 (32 bit) - version 1712
    • Microsoft Project® Professional Plus 2016 (32 bit) - version 1712
    • Microsoft Azure Information Protection add-in
    • Microsoft Teams
    • CIE Chat Bot
    • Microsoft Dynamics® 365 for Windows 8.1 app
    • Microsoft Word Mobile, Excel Mobile, PowerPoint Mobile, Sway
    • Microsoft Power BI Desktop and Power BI Mobile apps
  • CIE Virtual Client
    • Windows 10® Creators Update (64 bit) Enterprise Evaluation - version 1709
    • Microsoft Office® ProPlus 2016 (32 bit) – Monthly – version 1712
    • Microsoft Visio® Professional 2016 (32 bit) - version 1712
    • Microsoft Project® Professional Plus 2016 (32 bit) - version 1712
    • Microsoft Azure Information Protection add-in
    • Microsoft Teams
    • CIE Chat Bot
    • Microsoft Dynamics® 365 for Windows 8.1 app
    • Microsoft Word Mobile, Excel Mobile, PowerPoint Mobile, Sway
    • Microsoft Power BI Desktop and Power BI Mobile apps

Online Services:

  • Office 365 Enterprise E5
  • Enterprise Mobility + Security E5
  • Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement Plan Enterprise Edition

Windows 10 Enterprise Evaluation activation:

The Windows Enterprise Evaluation client license has a 90-day grace period that must be activated over the Internet within an hour of startup, or the PC will power off.

Office 2016 Desktop applications activation:

Office ProPlus 2016 is installed during the client imaging process, while the ProPlus suite of Office desktop apps are activated against the Office 365 tenant during the CIE Client Setup process. However, Visio Professional and Project Professional are only activated when used with an appropriate Office 365 tenant which has the corresponding licenses for those applications.

The Customer Immersion Experience can be optimized for customer-specific delivery. Facilitators can set up a CIE in minutes and connect to a remote desktop loaded with Microsoft’s latest and greatest technology. Facilitators can run a CIE session from any set of devices, whether using Microsoft equipment, having customers connect from their own device, or even remotely, with attendees connecting from their own workspace. Mini-CIE sessions can be delivered as an add-on to client meetings. Qualified facilitators have access to CIE equipment kits and can also host sessions at Microsoft Technology Centers and offices.

More marketing resources for US SMB partners

Start at sales and marketing for an overview and then visit our events and training page, grow your SMB cloud business page, Customer Immersion Experience, and Partner Insider for more ways to plug into training, community and marketing resources
Sales and marketing
Events and training
Grow your SMB cloud business
Customer Immersion Experience
Partner Insider community